By Sarah A.
On March 6-10, Duxbury High School music groups travelled to Washington D.C. to perform at the famous Strathmore Hall. Only select music groups were able to attend this trip, which includes Wind Ensemble, String Ensemble, and Chamber Singers.
Music teachers Mrs. Noerenberg, Mr. Madru, Mr. Tatarka and Mr. Judge all put in a great deal of work and time into planning the trip. Leading up to the trip, Mrs. Noerenberg said, “There is so much [to do] it’s overwhelming, but we have a lot of good help. It is a major undertaking.” Mr. Judge said, “Planning a trip of this magnitude takes a lot of work. There is a lot of time planning together as music teachers, as well as with the touring company. These trips take almost a year to plan out, but for the experiences that our students gain from it, makes it all worth it.” Teachers had to give up a lot of their own time to make the trip happen. Mr. Madru said, “Music teachers give a lot to go on a trip. Eight out of nine teachers are going.”
The music teachers have many favorite parts about the trips that they take. “I like when we get to perform and how excited everyone gets before the performance,” said Mrs. Noerenberg. She also enjoys being able to bring students on trips to many famous halls; Strathmore Hall is where the Baltimore Symphony performed before Wind Ensemble. Mr. Judge said, “I am very excited that our students have the opportunity to travel and gain exposure to a variety of musical experiences. I think one of the most thrilling opportunities is being able to attend a performance of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at Strathmore Hall Saturday evening, then spend the day there rehearsing and performing on Monday.”
The schedule was packed with many activities for students to do. The groups had clinics with a college, saw the Baltimore Symphony perform, went sightseeing in D.C., and went on a riverboat dance. Before the trip, senior and chamber singer Alana F. said, “I am looking forward to exploring D.C. with some of my friends and performing at Strathmore Hall. It is really cool to be able to perform at this hall.” This is Alana F.’s fourth music trip with the chorus. She was very excited for the new experience. Junior and wind ensemble member Anna S. said, “I am looking forward to seeing the Strathmore Hall in real life. From what I’ve seen online, it’s a beautiful hall! I’m also super excited for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra concert and the spirit cruise.”
Students and teachers were excited to perform at Strathmore hall. Mr. Judge said, “It’s a remarkable opportunity to perform in such a unique hall. While we have a great home with the PAC, because every space is so different acoustically, it becomes such a different experience performing at a venue like Strathmore Hall. Also, the students serve as representatives of Duxbury as they display their months of hard work to an audience that may not be familiar with our town and school.” Anna S. said, “It is such an honor! Last year, when we went to Carnegie, it felt almost wrong stepping on the same stage that Tchaikovsky directed on. It is such an honor and a privilege as a band to get to play at this hall.” Mr. Madru said, “It’s going to be good. I’ve never been on this stage before.”
Music trips give students the opportunity to talk with kids that they may not normally interact with inside of school. Mr. Tatarka thinks that music trips are a good bonding experience for the music groups, especially when they travel and get to perform in different places and music halls. Mr. Madru said that in his past experiences, he has seen the band become more of a team when they go on trips because everyone contributes more. “I see a lot of kids help each other on these trips,” Mr. Madru said. After the trip, senior and string ensemble member Jill S. said, “We had amazing and stunning pieces this year, which we performed amazingly. It’s definitely going to be a memory for everyone in the ensemble. We’re one, big, happy family.”