Student Musicians Serenade the Carmel Community from Home

 Julia Wilder February 8, 2021 

Music knows no boundaries and this year that includes Zoom.

It was a packed Zoom house for the Carmel High School Music Spotlight, where a sea of community members of all ages came together on individual Zoom screens to celebrate the accomplishments of our student-musicians. Unable to serenade the community through a traditional in-person concert this year, the students used the virtual platform to showcase their talents and brighten spirits.

“We wanted to continue to highlight the wonder of music-making that is still going on, despite the COVID changes,” said Meghan Cabral, director of Music. “This was a great opportunity not only for students to showcase their performance abilities, but also to allow students to work together to create the presentation.”

Despite the change in venue, attendees were treated to what felt like a personal concert, right in their own homes.

“I was so happy to see everyone on the Zoom,” said Amanda Purr, a junior who had a performance in the live stream. “I haven't done a live performance in so long and this was such a great experience to have. I honestly felt as though I was physically there with all the performers, teachers and audience members!”

The video performances were created by each student at home while on remote learning. Seeing all the students performing from different locations was a reminder that musical expression is a unifying force.

“I prepared for the performance from home by practicing the piece for at least a month before I thought it was good enough,” said Troy Sweet, a senior who performed a waltz by Chopin for the event. “I have been taking piano lessons, so I had to practice for that, and this was a perfect opportunity to show my progression on piano!”

The move to a virtual platform also allowed for a few unique moments that could not have happened had the event been in-person.

Eleanor Harrison

 One performance, from high school senior Eleanor Harrison, featured side-by-side videos of Harrison duetting with herself, playing both parts of Adagio Espressivo on her French horn. This was a treat for viewers who would not have seen this in-person unless Harrison was able to clone herself!

While the virtual platform was better than the alternative of not having a concert at all, Harrison and the other students miss the in-person experience.

“I still very much prefer a live audience because I get more out of the experience, and it helps me grow further as a musician,” said Harrison.

“I am so happy at how successful our first Zoom performance spotlight went,” said Cabral. “I was so happy that the students were able to collaborate on this professional presentation. It was a pleasure to see how many students, staff, administrators, board members and parents participated!”

In total, 16 talented Carmel High School student-musicians shared performances during the January 27 live-stream.

Performances included:

  • Jennie Belle Aliaga (Freshman): It’s Beginning to Look A lot Like Christmas
  • Marina Cilento (Freshman): Hallelujah
  • Jack Curtis (Junior): Spanish Dance No. 2
  • Fiona Faccilonga (Senior): Se Tu M’ami
  • Eleanor Harrison (Junior): Adagio Espressivo, 16th of 30 horn duets by Henri Kling
  • Nicola Kelly (Senior): Bach Gavotte en Rondeau
  • William Meyers (Senior): The Strenuous Life
  • Lauren O’Rourke (Junior): Fantasia in Major C, Third Movement
  • Anthony Piscottia (Freshman): Bonetrousle
  • Amanda Purr (Junior): Jingle Bells
  • Molly Radigan (Junior): Telemann Viola Concerto in G major
  • Olivia Scaperotti (Senior): Etude based on the works of S. Hering from The Progressing Clarinetist book by Leon Lester
  • Michelle Shaffer (Senior): Meditation from Thaïs by J. Massenet
  • Robert Sleight (Junior): Etude #19 By S. Hering - L. Lester
  • Troy Sweet (Senior): One Minute Waltz
  • Julia Wilder (Senior): Fleur Des Bles by Claude Debussy