District One students featured in Bill Drake Christmas Music Festival

Published 3:18 pm Monday, December 15, 2008

The 29th Annual Bill Drake Christmas Music Festival was held December 7 at the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium.&bsp; A record-breaking crowd was on hand to enjoy the variety of music that area school children and performers from the area presented.

District One Schools had the largest presence in the performance as approximately 215 students performed.&bsp; District One had the honors elementary chorus made up of 135 voices of students in grades 4-6.&bsp;&bsp; The All County Chorus had 31 vocalists from Chapman High School singing with students from high schools across the county.&bsp; The District One Symphony Orchestra is made up of students from Landrum High School and Chapman High School with 45 members.

The District One Elementary Honors Chorus opened the program with A Perfect Winter Day and their second selection was Rockin Around the Christmas Tree. Dr. Robert Nelson, music teacher at Inman Intermediate School directed the chorus. &bsp;

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The music teachers in District One are to be commended for their ability to bring 5 separate groups of students together and perform with only 2 opportunities to practice as a group.&bsp; Each year, the students are brought together at one of the high school performing arts facilities and practice as a group for the first time. &bsp;

The teachers from each school assist in helping students to sing together, work on vocalization, timing, and stage presence.&bsp; Music teachers are:&bsp; Dr. Robert Nelson, Inman Intermediate School; Mrs. Stacey Gossett, New Prospect Elementary School; Mrs. Allyson Allen, Holly-Springs-Motlow Elementary School; Mr. John Holloway, Campobello-Gramling School; and Mrs. Cecilia English, O.P. Earle Elementary School.

The District One Symphony Orchestra is under the direction of Mrs. Tamara King and Mr. Henry Anderson. This is the first time in many years that a district-wide orchestra has performed and the first time ever for the Bill Drake Christmas Program. &bsp;

Students in the orchestra and their teachers began preparing for this event in early August with an orchestra camp where they began learning music.&bsp; They have practiced on Wednesdays since the beginning of school.&bsp; We commend parents and students for their dedication to make the orchestra possible.

The symphony orchestra performed Dance of the Tumblers and Sleepers Wake. They then accompanied the Spartanburg All County Chorus in the performance of Handel&squo;s Hallelujah Chorus from the &dquo;Messiah&dquo;.&bsp; This performance is done with the county chorus and orchestra having practiced together only once and under the direction of someone they do not know.&bsp; This performance is an outstanding example of the excellent fine arts programs in public schools in Spartanburg County. &bsp;

A string quartet made up of Brittany Allison and Hamilton Bonds, violin;&bsp; Roman Fulton, viola; and Camy Helms, cello, provided music before the program. We wish to thank these outstanding performers for their extra work.

Thirty-one students from Chapman High School&squo;s choral music department participated in the All County Chorus, which performed Sleigh Ride and African Noel.&bsp; Ms. Rebecca Rostron is the choral instructor at Chapman High School.

We wish to recognize our District One student musicians and vocalists, our parents and friends, our District One Maintenance and Transportation Departments, our teachers, and our principals for helping this event to be a success.

A list of the Chapman High School students performing in the All County Orchestra&bsp; and the members of the District One Symphony Orchstra is below.

The 29th Annual Bill Drake Christmas Music Festival can be heard on &dquo;Awake With Drake‐103.3 FM on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Chapman High School Members of the Spartanburg All County Chorus: Kayla Burnett, Quinton Cole, Brittany Dressel, Preston Durham, Marcie Franklin, Danae Gaddy, Jennie Garrett, Kylie Gilbert, Faith Grant, Adrian Hall, Courtney Hall, Lyndsey Henderson, Kenny Hutchinson, Kaitlyn Kilpatrick, Leslie Landrum, CJ Ligon, Brandon Loftis, Cinnoun Mao, Katie Martin, Landon Masters,&bsp; Courtney Montgomery, Karla Nason, Keisha Nesbitt, Tori Shamp, Kimberly Solesbee, Dylan Stephens, Emily Underwood, Leana Weaver, Shanetta Wilkins, Talisha Wilkins, Chevy Wofford

District One Orchestra

First Violins: Brittany Allison, Concertmaster, Forrest Rossi, Asst. Concertmaster, Hamilton Bonds, Amanda Crago, Tommy Fiorillo, Buddy Fiorillo, Daphne Fortner, Anzhela Ionova, Julia Wines, Joe Woodfin

Second Violins: Lauren Givins, Principal Ethan Bruce, Alyssa Jaikaran, Katelyn Lanford, Lindsey Payne, Ty Rikett

Violas: Lilly Myers, Principal Emily Brooks, Lauren Cheek, Roman Fulton, Angela Krechko, Taylor McCullough, Will Ross, Josiah Smith

Cellos: Camy Helms, Principal, Danielle Blackwell, Grayson Bonds, Garrett McMakin, Justin Stone, Cayla Teague

Bass: Kelsey Spicer, Principal, Tori Hall, Amber Miller

Flutes: Angel Hollon, Amanda Robbins

Oboe: Tyler Goodwin

Clarinet: Rebecca Burrells

Horns: Katie Stewart, Max McGee

Trumpet: Josh Davenport

Trombones:Gurtej Singh, Tyler Goodwin

Tuba:Jaaron Snyder

Timpani:Erica Johnson

Percussion: Josh McDowell