JHS musicians prepare for All-State Music Festival

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By PETE FONTAINE

Times are indeed busy for the undergrads who participate in Johnston High School’s music ensembles.

“Our kids are living music and loving it,” said Ronald Lamoureux, the Music Department chair who has developed a highly-regarded program. “Each and every member – as well as my fellow teachers Oliver Reid and Matt Gingras – are working real hard in a number of areas.”

The first involves 11 JHS students who on Sunday will make history during the annual All-State Music Festival at the Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Providence.

“This is the most kids we’ve ever had make the select All-State Festival,” Lamoureux said. “We’re thrilled with what each and every student has accomplished. All our musicians are excited about this unique opportunity.”

Lamoureux, who along with Reid and Gingras, has the JHS Music Department near the top of Rhode Island’s high school programs, said the All-State Bands will play at 11 a.m. Sunday with the Junior and Senior Orchestras performing at 2:30 p.m. The vocalists are scheduled to be on stage at 6:30 p.m.

The All-State Music Festival is sponsored by the Rhode Island Music Education Association (RIMEA), of which the three JHS teachers are members.

“The group is a valuable resource for the state,” Lamoureux said. “RIMEA brings hundreds of kids together in these ensembles and provide an incredible experience. Each group is directed by professional from around the country.”

The JHS students who will perform at various times Sunday includes: Junior All-State Orchestra: Anthony Andriole, French Horn; Senior All-State Band: Rachel Carson, Base Clarinet; Edward DiLorenzo, French Horn; Senior All-State Orchestra: Benjamin Budway, Clarinet; Jordan Pena, Trombone; Senior All-State Mixed Choir: Sarah Banno, Aldo; Madison Paolucci, Soprano; Lauren Papa, Alto; and Hillary Rogers, Alto.

JHS will be represented in the Senior All-State Women’s Choir by Isabella Battista, Alto; and Emily Gaye, Alto.

“We are fortunate in town right now to have strong advocates in our central administration and town government,” Lamoureux said of Mayor Joseph Polisena and Superintendent Dr. Bernard DiLullo “who have been big supporters of our program. We look forward to growing even more in the year to come and creating a culture rich in the visual and performing arts.”

ANOTHER FIRST IS ON TAP

The JHS Music Department is also preparing for its first annual “Festival Concert” which will be held next Thursday, March 23 beginning at 7 p.m. inside the school auditorium.

Admission is $5 at the door and the event will feature the Jazz Band, Concert Chorus, the a cappella group, the Percussion Ensemble, the Select Choir and the Concert Band.

All the JHS groups will perform the music they are preparing for the upcoming April trip to Williamsburg, VA, where they’ll compete against other music groups from all over the country. The groups will also participate in the RIMEA Band and Music Festivals that are scheduled for March 29 and April 27.

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