The 2011 Winter Concert on Jan. 14 brought together groups from all three campuses for a special two-part show at the Blackford Theater. With eight groups performing, the concert provided a well-rounded view of the talents of Harker’s many instrumentalists.
The Lower School String Ensemble, directed by Toni Woodruff, began the show with their versions of “Sword Dance” by Bob Phillips and “Bach Country Fiddles.” The Lower School Orchestra and Lower School Jazz Ensemble, both directed by Louis Hoffman, then followed, performing a number of popular pieces, including the orchestra’s performance of Strauss’ “Radetzky March” and the jazz ensemble’s rendition of Wild Cherry’s “Play That Funky Music.”
Directed by David Hart, who also directed the Grade 6 Orchestra and the Grade 7-8 Orchestra, the Middle School Jazz Band played well-known tunes such as “The Saints Go Marching In” and Billy Strayhorn’s “Take the ‘A’ Train.” The Grade 6 Orchestra’s set included the Shaker hymn “Simple Gifts” and a rousing performance of the famous “James Bond Theme” by Monty Norman. Grades 7 and 8 played “Jupiter, Bringer of Jollity” from Holst’s “The Planets” and concluded with “New World, Mvt. I” from Dvorák’s “Symphony No. 9.”
The Harker School Jazz Band and The Harker School Orchestra, upper school groups directed by Chris Florio, closed the evening. The jazz band was joined by two special guests from Tamagawa Gakuen, Miyu Kondo on tenor saxophone and Marina Saito on baritone saxophone. They performed such tunes as “Bones For Basie” by English composer Alan Hare and the rollicking “You Can Have It” by Morgan Ames and James Foster.
After a brief intermission, the upper school orchestra concluded the concert with their performances of pieces by Verdi, Schubert and Brahms. Their performance of Saint-Saëns’ foreboding “Danse Bacchanale,” from “Samson and Dalila,” brought the show to an exhilarating close.