The future of the Stillwater High School bands program was on display Tuesday evening at the Stillwater High School Performing Arts Center when the sixth grade Beginning Band performed in a “side by side” concert with the Stillwater High School Wind Ensemble.
Each year, Stillwater sixth graders experience performing alongside top musicians in the band program during this concert. “The Side by Side concert is designed to give our beginning band students an idea of what they have to look forward to in the future. Students get to sit alongside high school students and look at the music while the older students are performing,” said SHS Director of Bands Kevin Zamborsky. “It’s also a great opportunity for parents to understand that the sounds that they’ve been hearing at home while students practice do continue to improve!”
The sixth grade and high school students only get one rehearsal together as a full ensemble the day of the performance. “This concert is also a great reminder to our high school students of just how far they’ve come. They get to see music that they would’ve thought was very difficult when they were beginners, which they can now read and perform accurately the first time,” said Zamborsky. “Overall, the concert is a great display of the bookends of our band program here in Stillwater, from our first-year players to students that have worked very hard to refine their playing and are not only among the best in their section in Stillwater, but in many cases, among the best in our state on their instruments. This is truly one of my favorite performances of the entire year.”
Tuesday evening there were over 220 students combined on stage for the Side by Side concert, which is the largest group the program has had since beginning the tradition in 2014.