Beauty of Music at KISJ: Orchestra Winter Concert - Dragons News

Friday, March 16, 2018

Beauty of Music at KISJ: Orchestra Winter Concert

 By Diana H. (G.12)
Photograph by Diana H.

Orchestra class and orchestra club at Korea International School, Jeju (KISJ) held Winter Concert in Mini Performing Arts Center (PAC) on February 7th, 2018. Students and their conductor Ms. Henry prepared beautiful music that filled KISJ community with vibrant and joyful moods.

Following the performance that happened in November during the Parents Weekend, it is the second concert that KISJ orchestra prepared. After successfully presenting four songs in the fall performance, the orchestra moved on preparing for the winter concert since November. This Winter Concert is meaningful because it is a collaboration of musicians from the orchestra club and the class. Several members of the club, who meets every Monday after school, joined the class and participated in two of the songs.

The orchestra performed five songs in total. What is unique about the Winter Concert is that there were solo and ensemble performances. The three songs that orchestra performed as a group are Libertango by Astor Piazzolla, Intermezzo from the opera <Carmen>, and Symphony No. 104 by Joseph Haydn. The composer Astor Piazzolla is known for marking the change of classical tango music to ‘nuevo tango,’ which means ‘new tango.’ His music incorporates jazz and classics into classical tango music compositions. Libertango remains as one of his most played music. The song reminds the audience of the male and female tango dancers on stage. The composition Intermezzo is featured in opera <Carmen>, arranged by French composer Georges Bizet. The harmony of the violin’s high notes and cello’s low notes are emphasized in Intermezzo. Also known as London Symphony, the Symphony No. 104 in D major is composer Haydn's final symphony of the twelve symphonies in total. The arrangement of the music that includes shifts of short and long notes creates a grandiose sound.

Students who are in Honors Orchestra were able to further display their skills through solo and ensemble performances. Another work of Astor Piazzolla, named Oblivion, was performed in a solo performance by grade 12 student, Sarah L. Played together with the rest of the orchestra, Sarah was able to pull out the plaintive mood of the song. In addition, three other students, Leo R., Chris B., and Yuji Y. performed in a trio.
Photograph by Diana H.

Overall, KISJ Orchestra was able to play in harmony that was able to bring out the intended emotions of each composition. The sounds of violins, violas, cellos, and bass were beautifully combined, making the audience to be amazed at the sounds. Sarah L.’s solo performance brought out a lot of praise for the wonderful harmony. The trio’s music was filled with a joyful melody that even made the audience to be delightful. The performances prepared by KISJ Orchestra was definitely sufficient to make Wednesday evening meaningful and worthwhile.

KISJ Orchestra musicians shared their opinions about their performances as well. The bass player Grade 10 student Sung K. was satisfied with how the concert went although he “did not have much time to practice than the last concert.” In the next concert, Sung hopes to improve his fingering so that he can be more accurate at playing his bass. In addition, the viola player Grade 10 student Kelly C. wants to play a solo performance in the next performance. The cello player Grade 12 student Sarah L., who played a solo, commented how she tried her best to play as beautifully as possible. She added that “I think it was a great opportunity for me to play one of my favorite compositions in front of the audience.” The violin player Grade 12 student Sue K. is looking forward to her solo performance in the next concert.

Ms. Henry, the teacher of orchestra class, the supervisor of orchestra club, and the conductor of KISJ Orchestra, thought that the orchestra played extremely well in the concert. Having to cancel several rehearsals due to the snow day, she was first worried at the upcoming concert. Also, her attempts at selecting higher-level compositions that involve more flats and difficult playing techniques forced students to work out of their comfort zone. Her worries turned into amazement when the orchestra gathered and performed well in harmony. She was grateful that the students participated and performed at their best. In the next Spring Concert, she is planning to “have more solo and ensemble performances, prepare several advanced-level compositions, and help every member of the orchestra to improve as violin, viola, cello, and bass players.” Ms. Henry showed gratitude at the audience who came to the concert to support music and arts at KISJ.
About the author
Diana is a grade 12 student at KISJ.  
She is a current Honors Journalism student.

After a successful concert, KISJ Orchestra is going to prepare for Spring Concert. Considering how music can positively influence the community, KISJ Orchestra’s magnificent work should be complimented and praised.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Diana, for a wonderful recap of the concert! It sounds like an amazing evening was had by all.

    Nicole Navratil
    Minneapolis, MN