Fall Season Brings Upon Annual Music Recital

Isabella Ruiz and Phoebe Lai

A special preface to Thanksgiving Break, the annual Fall Music Recital was orchestrated by PV High’s band on November 8 in the MPR. Aimed at both entertaining the audience and showcasing musical pieces students have been focused on and engrossed in since the start of the school year, the recital profits were directed towards donations to the Air Force Base.
“We’re collecting cash and sock donations, black and white men and women’s socks because Packages for Patriots contacted us just a few weeks ago and said they would really like our help with this,” music teacher Shellie Parkinson said, “It would be easy to combine the events.”
The motivation behind this event was sparked two years ago when students wanted additional time to perform their pieces.
“We’ve been doing the Honors Recital for some ten or twelve years but there are so many students who want to play in ensembles, smaller groups or solo works; students who have not just extra talent but extra passion because they have a lot of projects that they want to perform,” Parkinson said. “So we not only added a recital in the fall in the last two years, but we’ve been donating the money to the Los Angeles Air Force base.”
Music students dedicated much of their time on campus to arrange and assemble their music for the performance.  
“For the groups, it is hard to get together at someone’s house to practice, so it’s easier to use our big rooms on campus.  For the last month or two, everyone has been practicing after school, before school, at lunch, and in between to get as much practice as they can,” Parkinson said.
Students were given the chance to be creative with their musical selections for the recital, as this lead to plenty of diversity among the genres of music.
“I asked them [brass quartet] to play something patriotic and they came back to me and said ‘American Pie!’ and I thought the audience would definitely like that,” Parkinson said. “I like to try to make the music fun for everyone that comes, songs like ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ and ‘American Pie’ just make it more appealing and exciting for people who might not be very musical.”
A number of performers drew on their anticipation for the pieces that awaited the night, especially ones that marked a change from the year before.
Senior April Lee said, “I think this year we have a little more classical music because last year it was mostly jazz. I really looked forward to the other groups, especially the six cello quartet.”
Other students cited their enthusiasm for specific performances of the recital that raised interest and ears among the crowd, ranging from modern tunes turned instrumental to violin solos.
“I really enjoyed my friend Tyler’s own arrangement of the song, ‘I Want You Back’ by the Jackson 5,” senior and MC of the event William Nicholson said.  “It’s been interesting watching the piece grow.”
Parkinson remarked how her favorite part of the recital was not necessarily a song, but rather the process that encompassed the energy of the performers and what they can accomplish.
“I love the surprise of hearing something I either haven’t heard or haven’t heard practiced in a while, and being stunned by how good it is,” Parkinson said.  “My kids are crazy talented, students should come to their recitals and be wowed.”
However, the focus of the night shifted back to its main cause – the Air Force Base – when Senior Wesley Park presented Lieutenant General Thompson, who acted as a representative of the base, with the honorary donation check produced from the recital.
The recital demonstrated significance to both the dedicated students of PVHS’ music department and the military base, which especially holds a place close to the hearts of countless associated Seakings on campus.