We are happy to have worked with the Chaparral Middle School Wind Ensemble, one of four talented bands featured in the inaugural John Philip Sousa Band Festival at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. Their dynamic program included Anne McGinty’s Sea Song Trilogy, Eliot del Borgo’s Tame the Savage Sea, Dr. Buddy Clements’ Memories of the March King: A Tribute to John Philip Sousa (with the composer in attendance), and Sousa’s melodic march Fairest of the Fair, first composed for the annual Boston Food Fair in 1908.
Music director Leslie Schroerlucke had the following to say on behalf of the ensemble about their experience with MCI and their time at the festival. Congratulations, Chaparral Middle School, on a fantastic festival performance, and we hope to work with you again in the future!
“I just want to thank you and Music Celebrations for the wonderful opportunity to perform in the Kennedy Center last Sunday. It was truly a magical experience for me and my students and you and the team are to be congratulated for such a finely run event. I am so grateful for Music Celebrations in giving us extraordinary opportunities such as this!
Erin and Cindy [Music Celebrations staff] did a wonderful job at the Kennedy Center with getting us to the rehearsal rooms, on and off stage, etc. Everything seemed very organized and I felt good putting my total trust in them for the day’s events. I really appreciate them giving me a dressing room as well as it really helped me to be away from the kids for a little while. I really needed that at that point!!!!! The stage crew was also very nice.
The dinners out were very good – plenty to eat. Marie [the tour manager] was wonderful. She was not only knowledgeable, but she could read the group well and give them as much or as little as they could handle in information. I appreciated that she did not put pressure on the students. She also gave us a free performance of La Vie En Rose in French, what could be better?
The sightseeing was great. The Marine Barracks performance was amazing!!!!! It made everything worthwhile and the kids were so impressed. It just showed them everything I had been trying to instill in them in the last 3 years.
My personal highlight was definitely the performance at the Kennedy Center. It was a dream come true to conduct there and I think the students and parents finally understood the immensity of our undertaking. The students really rose to the challenge and I think they sounded better than ever! It was just amazing to be there with an actual audience. And a great audience at that! You guys did a great job on the publicity and I was so impressed at the turn out. Very commendable – all of you!
Anyway, thank you again for putting faith in me and my group to be able to pull this off. I think we did pretty well.”
Leslie Schroerlucke, Director
Chaparral Middle School Wind Ensemble, Diamond Bar, California
2015 Sousa Band Festival