May 09, 2007 Lori Ruhlman Uncategorized
High school orchestra earns top rating
Audience members and judges who heard the Skaneateles High School Orchestra perform classical and jazz pieces at the recent NYSSMA Major Organization Festival in Cortland would never have guessed that it was only the ninth time the students had all performed together this school year.
The judges awarded the group a coveted “Gold with Distinction” rating on Friday April 27. It was the third time a Skaneateles High School orchestra has earned the top ranking. The first was in 1999, according to Karen Veverka, orchestra director.
Veverka said that for two years, her orchestra students have practiced as two distinct groups, due to scheduling difficulties. There is no one time of day when all of the students are available and so two separate groups rehearse in the orchestra room at different times of day.
“Thanks to cooperation of the faculty and administration, the two sections are allowed to come together and rehearse as one group before a performance,” she said.
She praised the students for their teamwork. “When they came together into one orchestra, they shined.”
Ninth grader Marika Klosowski captured the feelings and hard work involved in rehearsing and performing with the poem “Violin Hands.” She earned a third place award in the ninth through twelfth grade category of the annual American Pen Women Art & Poetry Contest:
If violin hands could speak
Oh the stories they
Of coldness and composers
Vibrato and pain
In these hands memory of
The contours of a violin lingers
Fingertips calloused and firm from the
Bite of metal strings
Fingers themselves are
In remembrance of the shape
They so often take
These are hands that can
Tug gently at heartstrings
And lose themselves in the passage of
Music and time.
Violin hands are different.
By Marika Klosowski
Photo: Students practiced all year in two separate groups but when they came together was one orchestra, they shined. Judges gave them a “Gold with Distinction” rating on April 27. Here, most of the orchestra members gathered with the plaque to celebrate the accomplishment.