The Band Nights for Howard County Middle Schools program opened a two-week music extravaganza for young western Howard County musicians and music lovers last week.
Middle School bands from throughout the county played their best for judges last Thursday and Friday. The performance by the Glenwood Middle School Wind Ensemble under the direction of David Apple was compelling.
The students, dressed in their concert finest, gave an outstanding rendition of Claude T. Smith's difficult "Declaration Overture." Mr. Apple was pleased with the band's performance, and grateful for the support of Principal Vince Catania and Assistant Principal Albertha Caldwell, who attended band night, and for the help of faculty members and parents.
Shelly Williams, who directs the bands at the new Mount View Middle School, says that the Wind Ensemble and Concert Band at Mount View have surpassed her expectations. Judges at the Band Nights were extremely complimentary to both bands, citing the Wind Ensemble's rendition of Latham's "Court Festival" as one of the finest interpretations they'd heard.
The judges knew that this is the first year for both groups, but said they wouldn't have known this by their performances.
Meanwhile, at the Virginia Beach National Festivals of Music, students from Glenelg High School were walking away with all the trophies. Bands from all over the East Coast participated in the festivals, and the Glenelg musicians, led by director Barry Enzman, expanded their already considerable national reputation.
They took home trophies for first place in all the Division AA instrumental and band categories: concert band, jazz ensemble, parade, silks, and drill team. They won for best sight reading, outstanding rhythm section, best auxiliary parade unit, and best concert and jazz bands, regardless of division.
Glenelg saxophonist Garrett Warren was named best jazz soloist at the festivals.
Students in the sixth grade at Glenwood will join students from Lisbon, Bushy Park, and West Friendship elementary schools Friday at Glenelg High to hear the Maryland Youth Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Angelo Gatto.
Mr. Gatto teaches strings at our local schools, and he is the founder and director of the Maryland Youth Symphony Orchestra. Each year Mr. Gatto plans a concert for local school children to introduce them to symphonic music.
Friday, many students from our area will participate in the Middle School Gifted and Talented Orchestra and Symphonic Band and the Elementary Enrichment Orchestra Concert at Centennial High School. The 7:30 p.m. free concert is open to the public, and you will hear extraordinary music from these accomplished youngsters.
If you hold tickets to the Maynard Ferguson concert at Glenelg High School rescheduled for Tuesday, you are invited to attend a free music clinic. The clinic will begin in the school auditorium at 6:30 p.m. The concert begins at 8 p.m.
The Laun family of Ellicott City lost their home in a fire earlier this month. Sons Matt and John attend Mount View Middle School, and the Mount View community invites you to join them in helping the Launs.
The family survived the fire, but lost their pets, their home and all their household possessions. The Mount View PTA has set up a fund at Maryland National Bank for the family.
If you'd like to contribute to the fund, send a check payable to the Laun Family Fire Fund to Maryland National Bank, 9150-19 Baltimore National Pike, Ellicott City 21041.
Sixth-grade classes are constructing a photo album for the family and would be pleased to have photos that the Laun family might enjoy including in their album. Contact the school at 313-5545.
There is art on display at Columbia Mall, and many pieces are the work of students from Bushy Park, Lisbon and Pointers Run elementary schools.
Be sure to see the students' outstanding work the next time you are at the Mall.
Last week, I incorrectly reported the dates that the Glenelg Country School musical "The Sound of Music" would be performed. The musical will be given this weekend. Today and tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 4 p.m., the curtain will rise in the Performing Arts Room in the Gould Building.
Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for students. Call 531-5775 for more information.
Saturday is "Christmas in April" throughout the area. Youths and adults from schools, churches, and civic organizations will pick up hammers and paint brushes to refurbish houses their owners are unable to care for. A group of students from Glenwood Middle School is volunteering, and members of Poplar Springs and Jennings Chapel United Methodist churches have plans to help.
It's Art Extravaganza Day at Pointers Run Elementary School tomorrow. All day students at the school will move from one art activity to another.