Wind lapped at the pages of musicians’, but failed to diminish the musical impact of Temple City High School’s annual Pops Concert.
The event showcased numerous pieces derived from “popular” songs; however, deviating from the norm, the three symphonic groups (Beginning, Advanced, and Honors) debuted original pieces and arrangements produced by students and staff.
“Blue Ridge Legend”, a piece reminiscent of the Appalachians and rugged frontier, commenced the concert. The conductor of this symphonic group, composed of the Advanced Orchestra and Symphonic Band, Bert Ferntheil, merrily donned costumes for his arrangement “A New Hope for America” while violins hummed the tune of Superman, brass trumpets the Dark Knight Score, and the entire ensemble for “Thy Alabaster Cities Gleam.”
The Beginning Orchestra, only containing incoming freshmen, then joined the Symphonic Band and presented works (“Thunder and Lightning Polka”, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix arr.) under the direction of Mr. Phil Bailey.
The upper tier Honors Orchestra and Wind Ensemble closed the event in blues, battle, and brotherhood. Duke Ellington piped in a medley, while soldiers could be seen in a rendition of the HBO series “Band of Brother” theme. Cello section leader and composer Daniel Gee then conducted his “Philia Overture”, a piece celebrating friendship, used symbolic rhythms and modern musical convention.
This article was written by Randy Shun. It was published in the Temple City Voice on May 29, 2009.