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Four-Band Winter Concert at Eckstein Middle School in Seattle

Posted by glennled on December 14, 2011

Eckstein Wind Ensemble

At Eckstein Middle School in northeast Seattle on 8 December, more than one-quarter of the entire student body performed in one of four bands at the winter concert. These bands are comprised of 341 musicians out of the student body of 1280 students–that’s 27% and that’s success! You simply can’t argue about the superiority of this music program when you look at all the trophies in the hallway outside the auditorium, which was packed with parents, relatives and friends like me.

The Beginning Band (31 students) conducted by Chris Boscole played three pieces. Next was the Junior Concert Band (109 students) conducted by Cuauhtemoc Escobedo (aka “Mr. E” or “Moc”), Director of Bands at the school. The Junior Band played five pieces, finishing with Leroy Anderson’s “A Trumpeter’s Lullaby,” featuring three trumpet soloists. After that, Mr. Escobedo conducted the Intermediate Concert Band (107) in another five pieces, one of which featured another trumpeter. Finally, Mr. Escobedo conducted the Wind Ensemble (94) in yet another five pieces. Soloists included two clarinetists and five flutists.

Flute soloist in Eckstein Wind Ensemble performs "Gemeinhardt Suite" by Robert W. Smith

The music, including some Bach and Mozart, was challenging for the students—there was no effort to “play it safe” with easy compositions—and the students were up to the challenge! It was very impressive and enjoyable.

Two of my trumpet students performed—see my blog posts of 18 November 2009, and 19 April 2010. One is in the Wind Ensemble, and the other is in the Junior Concert Band. I was very proud of and happy for them.

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

Thus ends "Sheherazade" by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

Students don Santa hats for the finale, "Sleigh Ride," by Leroy Anderson

Three trumpeters accept the applause from the Eckstein Junior Band (standing) and the audience after soloing in "A Trumpeter's Lullaby" by Leroy Anderson

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