Between the lights, decorations and sounds of music, the Performing Arts Department made a splash at the Winter Spectacular on Dec. 14 at 7:30 p.m. The concert showcased the top band, choir, orchestra, drama and guitar programs.
“I want the audience to take away a great experience and to see how we are all one cohesive performing arts department and what we can do when we all come together,” Drama teacher Mr. Erickson said. “We’re in there practicing everyday.”
The Performing Arts Department all collaborated throughout the performance with choir, the Chamber Orchestra and Honors Band, which was directed by Ms. Hamilton, Mr. Johnston and Mr. Haggard. While the three groups were up on the stage, they performed a medley of Christmas songs that ended in a special sing-along for the audience. During the performance, students from the special education program also came onto the stage to sing “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” with choir. Other songs such as “Rudolph” and “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” were played as crowd favorites and in honor of the previous band director, Mr. Wedge.
“I’m sad that this was my last Winter Spectacular, but I’m glad that I got to experience it three times with everyone that I care about,” senior and saxophone player Anthony Franco said. “I loved every minute of it and would do it over and over again in a heartbeat.”
While students and family members walked in, Guitar Club played a set list of music in the lobby. All of their performances were student lead. The Advanced Acting and Beginning Acting classes also performed with three skits during the transitions for the groups on stage. During other transitions, the Strolling Strings performed three songs. Besides the performances on and off stage, one special performance was “The First Noel” that incorporated a solo by Mark Manatolo.
“I was a little nervous because when you a play a solo, it is hit or miss,” senior and violin player Mark Manatolo said. “When you are at home, you can play it as perfect as you can, but when you are on stage, you don’t know what’s going to happen, so I wasn’t sure how well how I would do. I’m happy and honored… that Mr. Johnston gave me that solo with the choir. It was fun.”
The Red Mountain Performing Arts Department prepared diligently for months in order to make the Winter Spectacular a memorable concert. To find out more about upcoming concerts or the Performing Arts Department, visit http://www.mpsaz.org/rmhs/academics/performingarts.
Performing his solo, senior Mark Manatolo plays his violin during “The First Noel.” (Photo by Ava Hansen)