Marching down Main St. U.S.A.

Rehearsing piece after piece and day after day eventually paid off for the marching band and orchestra students who traveled to the “happiest place on earth” for their yearly musical spring getaway, this year to the warm and sunny Orlando, Florida. The two musical departments traveled alongside one another and set out for their five day trip on March 23.

This year, two charter buses were hired to usher the students and staff to their separate Orlando hotels roughly 16 hours down the road.

Marching Band and Orchestra students were given the rare opportunity to work with Disney performers and perform a variety of different Disney songs. The Orchestra performed in front of a live audience at the Epcot Center on Friday afternoon. The selections they played consisted of the songs Declaration, Mach of Meisersingers, Serenade for Strings Orchestra.

The marching band performed while walking in the parade down Main Street at Disney’s Magic Kingdom theme park on Friday. “Students were excited and a bit nervous but they did a fantastic job,” Band Director Andrew Loft said.

On Saturday, marching band members participated in the Disney “You’re Instrumental” workshop where a Disney musician conducted the students in a studio session. They were given a selection of music in which they had to sight read and then synced it with a Disney movie in an allotted amount of time. The producer recorded them playing “A Tale As Old As Time” from Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” and played it back to them over the original so they could spot the differences.

“It was a great opportunity to learn about the world of the professional musician and learn how to coordinate film with music,” Loft said.

With Festival Disney, both the band and orchestra performed in hopes of receiving advice in advancing their instrumental skills while performing songs they enjoy. “I thought the trip was a great experience. We were given a lot of advice from several professors in music,” sophomore Connie Tran, a member of the violin section in the orchestra department, said.

The trip was not all about performing and receiving ratings; the students also visited Disney Theme Parks during their stay. They visited Hollywood Studios on Thursday, Magic Kingdom on Friday and Epcot on Saturday in addition their performances.

“It was a wonderful experience to travel with such outstanding students and musicians,” Orchestra Director Stephanie Lewis said.