By Roland Li,
The Davis High orchestra program’s first concert filled the seats of the Richard Brunelle Performance Hall on Friday, Dec. 11.
Master of Ceremony and School Board President Alan Fernandes first welcomed two quartets onto the stage: the 10th-grade quartet and the Divertimentalists. The sophomores played a fast paced Haydn piece and the Divertimentalists, composed of only DHS Symphony members, played a lively Dvorak piece.
Next on the stage was the Baroque Ensemble, led by soloists Caleb Young and Kacey Hsu. With everyone standing up except the cellos, the Baroque Ensemble played the lengthy “Christmas Concerto” by Arcangelo Corelli.
Then the Chamber Orchestra, conducted by orchestra program director Angelo Moreno, played “The Bells of Geneviev” by Marin Marais. After the Marais piece, Moreno left the stage and student-teacher conductor Shannon Houston came on, leading the orchestra in “For Unto Us from Messiah” by Handel.
“I felt I did wonderful conducting, but even better the players did a wonderful job,” Houston said. “I really didn’t need to conduct tonight, those students could play together. We had a blast up there.”
Moreno came back onstage and led the Chamber Orchestra in “Allegro from Sonata No.1” by Telemann, bringing an end to the first half of the concert.
“I think it went OK,” sophomore Garrett Ma said. “I think when we rehearsed it was better, but I think we felt more willing to listen to each other onstage because of the pressure.”
During intermission, a slideshow displayed the DHS Symphony’s trip to Carnegie Hall during the summer.
After a quartet called Moment Musicaux played “Death and the Maiden” by Franz Schubert, the DHS Symphony was introduced to the audience.
Conducted by Moreno, the group played three pieces: “Sinfonia I in C major” by Mendelssohn, “Coriolan Overture” by Beethoven and “Danzon No. 2” by Marquez.
“Our performance was pretty good,” concertmistress Rebecca Chang said. “The Symphony’s favorite to play was definitely the Danzon.”
To finish off the concert, DHS orchestra program alumni were led onto the stage. Together with the Symphony, they played “Sleigh Ride.”
“It was really exciting considering that I haven’t touched or played the violin for about two years now,” DHS alumnus Brendan Zhu said. “It brings back great memories.”