Middle, High school bands play to one beat

Middle%2C+High+school+bands+play+to+one+beat

Photo by Nicole Kaauamo

Sophomore trumpet player Justin Fernandez plays as part of the third annual Band-o-Rama, March 6, 2012, in Keopuolani Hale. The spring event features the middle and high school bands.

By Nicole Kaauamo, Sports co-editor

The 7th grade, 8th grade, and high school bands all demonstrated their musical skill on Tuesday at the third annual Band-O-Rama under the direction of Mr. Siuai Laufou.

7th grader Kahulu Nunokawa was the emcee and opened the night. The 7th grade band then performed a theme from the “Surprise Symphony” by Josef Haydn.

Next, they wooed the crowd with their rendition of the upbeat song “First Slide March” featuring four trombonists, who came downstage for their featured performance.

Then, they incorporated standing movements into their song “Funiculi, Funicula” by Luigi Denza for their closing song. “We were trying to emulate the up and down movement of the funiculi, funicula [the funicular, or cable car],” Mr. Laufou said.

Mr. Laufou explained the purpose of the two-campus format of the concert between the different bands.

“So they [the older students] can see where they were. The younger ones see where they can be in a couple years,” Mr. Laufou said.

After taking time to warm up with their scales, the 8th grade band proceeded to perform “Invincible (A Fanfare for Band)” by Robert W. Smith. They also performed Steve Hodges’ “Alpine Meadows” and Douglas Akey’s “Fire Dance” before closing with Michael Sweeney’s “Aztalan.”

The high school concert band was the last of the performing groups and opened with the dramatic “Chimera,” which went from heart-pounding percussive passages to smooth symphonic sounds. That was followed by a soothing rendition of “Shenandoah,” arranged by Robert Sheldon.

The audience got a special treat in the form of a drum challenge by five select members of the percussion section during Carl Strommen’s “Tap Out.” Four of the drummers created their rhythms with drumsticks on plastic buckets, while one in the middle kept cadence on a pair of snare drums. The drummers on the buckets challenged each other, with one pair starting a rhythm, and the other pair responding.

They closed with selections from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 . The opening strains got the student-filled audience murmuring as they recognized the unmistakable sounds of one of their favorite movies.

Before the night came to an end, all three bands filled the stage and performed Robert W. Smith’s “The Tempest” in combination. This song showed the unity between the three bands, despite the age and skill differences.

“‘Tempest’ was my favorite number because having everyone playing together was just crazy,” said junior tenor saxophonist James Krueger.

The evening was well-attended by parents and staff with at least half of the theater seats filled.