Preview: Springfest celebrates new season with Chamber Ensembles, senior soloists

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Rose Bostwick

by Rose Bostwick
Every year, North celebrates the beginning of the spring season with the annual concert, Springfest. Springfest is a two-part concert, which will begin with Springest I tomorrow and continue with Springfest II Thursday. Both concerts will be at 7 p.m. in the auditorium.
Springfest I
Springfest I will include Jubilee Singers, Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, and the smaller Chamber Ensembles.
According to music teacher Richard Labedz, who directs the Symphonic Band and the Saxophone Ensemble, the Chamber Ensembles are a unique highlight of the concert.
When students perform in the Chamber Ensembles, groups of a few students who play the same instrument, they “go from being in a large ensemble to being featured in a smaller capacity,” Labedz said.
According to Labedz, playing in a Chamber Ensemble allows for a different sound than what one would usually hear in the Orchestra. “It’s a good experience, and it brings out all the different colors in the pieces,” he said.
The Wind Ensemble as a whole will perform a 1937 concert band piece called “Lincolnshire Posey” by Percy Grainger.
“This is a significant piece,” said Labedz. “It has been coming up a lot with high school and college bands over the years, so I would call it a classic.”
According to freshman Sophia Vito, a member of the Symphonic Band,  a special part of preparing for Springfest has been “working with and hearing the other bands.”
Vito also added that the songs Symphonic Band is preparing for Springfest are “more challenging” than what the band usually performs, adding that “each section has worked hard on their individual parts.”
Vito explained that the experience of preparing more challenging songs “has really helped us to play together as a band.”
Springfest II
Springfest II will include Concert Choir, Family Singers, Orchestra, and String Ensemble, all directed by music teacher Adam Grossman.
According to Grossman, a highlight of the night will be Orchestra and Family Singers’ performance of “Four Shakespeare Songs” by local composer Paul Brust, who will be coming to North to help work on the piece with students.
In addition,  Concert Choir will perform “Little Beggarman,” by Emily Crocker.
“This is one of the more interesting pieces because it’s an Irish folk song,” said Grossman. “It’s a fun tune, and it’s different from what we usually do at Springfest.”
Later, featured soloists will perform a movement of the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the orchestra, as part of the annual Concerto Competition. According to Grossman, listening to the annual solos is one of the best parts of Springfest II. The soloists are seniors Spencer Anderson, Dominic Bosco, and Adam Zupancic.
According to Anderson, performing the solo with Bosco and Zupancic “feels like the culmination of all the hours of practicing and rehearsing we’ve done over the last four years.”
“I’ve spent countless hours at my music stand perfecting and performing this piece, learning its ins and outs, and experimenting with different interpretations,” said Anderson. “I’m so happy that I have this opportunity to cap off my high school musical experience.”
Springfest I and II are free concerts, but there is a suggested donation of $5 to attend.