Salute to Youth concert a send-off for music teacher Ron Thorpe – Daily Republic

By Tony Wade

Solano Symphony’s Salute to Youth concert will serve as both an opportunity for the public to experience up-and-coming Solano County musicians and as a swan song for longtime organizer and retired music teacher Ron Thorpe.

Thorpe began organizing the annual event about seven years ago and feels it’s time to move on.

The Salute to Youth concert is an exhibition performance and the culmination of a musical competition.

“Last November, Solano County students from ages 12 to 21 had an opportunity to display their musical talents in front of a three-judge panel,” Thorpe said. “The categories were vocal, piano, strings and wind instrument. They memorized a concerto that could be played along with the symphony. The four that were chosen have been working very hard and will rehearse with the symphony and then perform for the public.”

Source: Salute to Youth concert a send-off for music teacher Ron Thorpe

Semple teachers to face off in Lip Sync Battle fundraiser – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

Lip-syncing in music is often frowned upon (See: Milli Vanilli), but when it is turned into a competition, suddenly everybody wants to be a part of it. Lip-sync competitions certainly have become a sensation in the past couple of years. While simply mouthing the words to popular songs may not seem like it takes a lot of skill, it actually is quite a challenge to not only make the lip movements match with the words but also make it entertaining. However, lots of people have managed to attempt this challenge, and it has proven successful. Perhaps you have seen celebrities squaring off against Jimmy Fallon on “The Tonight Show,” or maybe even the Paramount Network competition series “Lip Sync Battle,” hosted by LL Cool J and Chrissy Teigen.

Now the concept has come to Robert Semple Elementary School for the second year in a row, as faculty members square off in the school’s Teacher Lip Sync Battle.The event, which is coordinated by fifth-grade teacher Kendra Petrellese and fourth and fifth-grade combination teacher Matt Shelton, acts as a fundraiser for the school’s Outdoor Education Program for fourth and fifth graders. Both classes go to Coloma for three days and two nights, where the fourth graders go by Sutter’s Mill and learn about the Gold Rush, different mining techniques and how the early settlers made cornbread.

Source: Semple teachers to face off in Lip Sync Battle fundraiser

Benicia High School grad helps bring next swing revival to LA – Benicia Herald

By the Editor

Art Blakey said that “Music washes away the dust of every day life.” The L.A. Swing Barons are helping make that happen in Southern California. The classic 13-piece jazz big band was formed in 2015 when it became clear that no one in the greater Los Angeles area was playing music capturing the hard swingin’ 1930s /1940s Kansas City sound of Count Basie and his peers.

Dancers from all over Southern California come once a month to the iconic and historic Clifton’s Cafeteria in downtown Los Angeles to dance to the Swing Barons’ live & lively music. Many dress in vintage clothing from the era.

They have just released their first CD, and it features a graduate of the Benicia Unified School District’s music program and 2013 Benicia High School graduate Liam Robertson, who plays lead alto saxophone.

Source: Benicia High School grad helps bring next swing revival to LA

Choristers to liven the holidays at SCC – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

Christmas carols have been with us since the earliest days of Christianity, with songs of praise at Christmastime going back to the fifth century, not long after the early Christian church created the holy day marking Christ’s birth. Many of the songs were written in the Middle Ages and told stories as minstrels carried them from town to town, the lyrics providing a narrative about the Nativity, among other things.

A pair of weekend choral concerts at Solano Community College may not delve into such detail, but the holiday spirit almost certainly will quicken somewhat when the Solano Choral Society and the Solano Community College Chamber Choir begin their musical programs, which organizers promise will be fun and festive.

Dubbed “A Fest of Carols and Lullabies,” music begins at 8 p.m. Saturday and will be repeated at 3 p.m. Sunday in the newly renovated SCC Theatre, 4000 Suisun Valley Road, Fairfield.

Source: Choristers to liven the holidays at SCC

Fantasy, reality become intertwined in Benicia High School fall production – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

One might associate fantasy fans and theater fans as being disparate groups of people, but they will come together for Benicia High School’s fall play “She Kills Monsters,” which opens tonight. However, the fantasy elements will be intertwined with the harsh realities of grieving and growing up.

Qui Nguyen’s comedic drama only debuted off-Broadway in 2011 but is quickly becoming a popular production for high schools. The story is set in the ‘90s and centers around Agnes Evans (played by Ellie Bettencourt), a young high school teacher reeling from the loss of her parents and teenage sister Tilly (Pilar Gonzales) in a car accident. Agnes learns that Tilly was an avid “Dungeons and Dragons” player after uncovering a notebook of game scenarios and soon becomes a part of that world— both literally and figuratively— while learning about the side of her sister that she never really knew.

Director Nathan Day said he chose the play due to its themes, which he felt audiences could relate to.

Source: Fantasy, reality become intertwined in Benicia High School fall production

Armijo drama students tackle brain-teasing murder mystery – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

Armijo High School’s Theater Department invites the community to a good brain-teaser with the production of “The Murder Mystery at the Murder Mystery,” which opens this weekend.

The play, written by Brian D. Taylor, takes place in a playhouse in Chen Boyang, Michigan. This mysterious comedy revolves around actors and actresses who are performing the play, “Putting a Little English On It.”

Performances are at 7 p.m. Friday, Saturday, Thursday and Dec. 8-9 at the school, 824 Washington St., Room T-2, in Fairfield. The show runs for about 1 hour and 45 minutes, including a brief intermission.

Source: Armijo drama students tackle brain-teasing murder mystery

Wood High Madrigal Dinner shows begin Thursday – The Reporter

By Reporter Staff

The air chills, the nights grow longer, signs the season of glad tidings will soon be here, always welcome news to the eyes and ears, as the Will C. Wood Singers ready their annual Madrigal Dinner programs, fundraisers for the high school’s choral programs, beginning Thursday.

Besides the first performance, the 21st annual shows, called “Seasons of Light,” also are set for Friday and Saturday at the Opera House, 560 Main St., Vacaville.

Madilyn Hawkins wrote the script; Colby Hawkins, a choral instructor at the Marshall Road campus, directs; and Naomi Simpson is the choreographer.

Source: Wood High Madrigal Dinner shows begin Thursday

Rodriguez students tackle comedy ‘You Can’t Take It With You’ – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

Rodriguez High School presents the comedy, “You Can’t Take It With You,” written by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman.

The story centers on sweet-natured Alice Sycamore who falls for the banker’s son, Tony Kirby.

When she invites her snooty prospective in-laws to dinner to give their blessing to the marriage, Alice’s peculiar extended family might be too eccentric for the Kirbys.

Source: Rodriguez students tackle comedy ‘You Can’t Take It With You’

Solano Youth Theatre opens season with ‘Mulan Jr.’ – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

Solano Youth Theatre, a division of Young Artists Conservatory of Music, opens the 2017-18 season this weekend with Disney’s “Mulan Jr.”

“Our SYT is a great expression of our community at its best,” said Wanda Cook, artistic director and founder of the Young Artists Conservatory of Music, in a press release.

“Each SYT show gives our student actors the opportunity to develop lifelong skills. It pulls together hundreds of adults in support of excellence demonstrated in the life of a hard-working young person.”

Source: Solano Youth Theatre opens season with ‘Mulan Jr.’

Vacaville High choir kicks off busy season at ‘Christmas in My Hometown’ – Daily Republic

By Amy Maginnis-Honey

Ashley Parker, who directs the Vacaville High School choir, begins listening and searching for Christmas music in the late summer.

“I joke around that I’m always ‘bah humbug’ by the time Christmas actually gets here,” she shared in an email.

The choir kicks off a busy holiday season Nov. 25 as they make their third appearance in “Christmas in My Hometown,” now in its 12th year.

That will be followed by singing Nov. 28 at the annual Festival of Trees in Vacaville.

Source: Vacaville High choir kicks off busy season at ‘Christmas in My Hometown’

Local students prepare for another Merriment on Main ensemble – The Reporter

By Michael Morris

It’s that time of year in which music often acts as a uniting force for communities throughout the country.

Whether the sounds of the season exude from the speakers of a family’s living room or spills through the illuminated neighborhood streets as carolers go from house to house, Christmas music often rekindles the most treasured of memories as people reconvene for Merriment on Main Nov. 28.

For families set to attend to the 35th tree lighting, music has become ingrained within the tradition of Christmas in Vacaville. While there will be a collection of professional artists, the performances by the younger and less seasoned crowd have been a popular point of interest year after year.

Although the local jazz bands at Vacaville and Will C. Wood high schools have been an integral part of the annual celebration, the choir at Jean Callison Elementary School returns after more than 25 years providing their unique spin on the annual festivities. After originally performing on the sidewalk adjacent to where Fleet Feet Sports currently resides, the budding group of more than 100 elementary students will return with 14 unique songs and plenty of movement.

Source: Local students prepare for another Merriment on Main ensemble

Scarlet Brigade announces Tournament of Champions band revue – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

Fairfield High School’s acclaimed Scarlet Brigade Marching Band will host the 29th annual Tournament of Champions from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Nov. 18.

The competition viewing area is on Dover Avenue between East Atlantic Avenue and Cement Hill Road. The parade begins at 9 a.m. Concert and jazz performances begin at 8 a.m. at Fairfield High School, 205 E. Atlantic Ave.

More than 40 elite middle school and high school band programs from Northern California and Nevada will perform. The event ends with a field show competition at 5:30 p.m. at Schaefer Stadium.

Source: Scarlet Brigade announces Tournament of Champions band revue

Will C. Wood Jazz Earns 1st Place In Division – Daily Republic

By Richard Cook

Congratulations to The Will C. Wood Jazz Band who performed at the 40th Annual Grape Bowl Classic in Lodi on Saturday November 4th. The band earned 1st Place in their division. Will C. Wood will compete again on Saturday, November 18th at Fairfield High School to end the season.

Source: Good News: Will C. Wood Jazz Earns 1st Place In Division

Will C. Wood Singers’ madrigal returns to Vacaville Opera House – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

The Will C. Wood Singers’ 21st annual madrigal dinner production is Nov. 30 through Dec. 2 at the Vacaville Opera House.

Performances are at 7 p.m. Nov. 30 and Dec. 1. There will be a 2 p.m. matinée Dec. 2. The evening performances feature a catered meal. The venue is at 560 Main St., Suite C.

Source: Will C. Wood Singers’ madrigal returns to Vacaville Opera House

BHS Panther Band hosts first golf tournament fundraiser over weekend – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

Benicia High School’s Panther Band Boosters held the program’s first-ever golf tournament fundraiser at Hiddenbrooke Golf Club on Sunday where money was raised and fun was had by all.

Benicia High School’s band program– including its jazz band, Color Guard, drumline and two concert bands– remains one of the school’s proudest organizations. The program has won an ocean of awards over the years and traveled all over to participate in band reviews, competitions and other events. After all, this was the same program that was part of the Rose Parade for two years and has even performed outside the state in places like Chicago and Georgia.

However, it does cost money to participate in these events, so the Boosters group puts on a variety of fundraisers to benefit the program. These include the Jazz ‘N’ Crab Fundraiser in January, the Benicia Bay Winter Review Fundraiser and the Classic Car Show Fundraiser in the spring. With three fundraisers in the spring semester, Booster President Holly Ojendyk said the parent group was looking for another one to hold in the fall.

Source: BHS Panther Band hosts first golf tournament fundraiser over weekend

Will C. Wood Band Earns Awards in Elk Grove – Daily Republic

By Richard Cook

The Will C. Wood Band traveled to Elk Grove to compete in the 6th Annual Franklin Band Review on October 14th and earned awards in Concert and Jazz competition.

The students of the Wind Ensemble earned 3rd Place and the Jazz Band earned 5th in their division. The Jazz Band will travel to Lodi in November to compete again at the Lodi Grape Bowl Classic. The Wind Ensemble performs again in Fairfield at the Tournament of Champions, also in November.

Source: Our Successes: Will C. Wood Band Earns Awards in Elk Grove

Will C. Wood Band Hosting Fundraiser Event – Daily Republic

By Richard Cook

Attention ALL Wildcat fans! On Saturday, October 21st, the Will C. Wood High School Band Boosters will be hosting their 1st annual Mattress Fundraiser Sale!

We will be turning the high school gym into a mattress showroom. There will be Simmons Beautyrest and more top brands in all sizes. Memory foam, latex, pillowtops and hybrid styles will be on display, priced up to 50% below retail store prices! Further discounts also offered for retired or active Teachers or school staff, First Responders, and Military.

Source: School Event: Will C. Wood Band Hosting Fundraiser Event

Fairfield band boosters seek Tournament of Champions sponsors – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

The Scarlet Brigade Boosters Club of Fairfield High School is seeking community members and businesses to help sponsor the 29th annual Tournament of Champions Band Review.

The event is Nov. 18 and is expected to draw 40 middle and high school band programs from Northern California and Nevada.

Sponsorships are needed by Oct. 23.

Source: Fairfield band boosters seek Tournament of Champions sponsors

Retired educator follows musical dream – The Reporter

By Jessica Rogness

Nancy Northrup was born and raised in Vacaville — and on music.

“I’ve always had music as part of my life,” said the Winters resident, who plays guitar and mandolin when she performs.

Later this month, Northrup will be traveling to Waycross, Ga. to play at the Gram Parsons Festival.

She has a busy September and October scheduled locally too, with performances at Berryessa Gap and Seka Hills Winery.

She has also played at the Vacaville farmer’s market, and hosts open mics at Steady Eddy’s in Winters the last Saturday of each month and at Berryessa Gap the third Thursday of each month.

“I see Winters becoming this Renaissance place for art,” Northrup said.

There are many great musicians there who haven’t come out of their shell yet, she said.

She also has played at The Bluebird in Nashville twice.

Source: Retired educator follows musical dream

Vacaville Jazz Festival includes local musicians – Daily Republic

By Tony Wade

Will C. Wood senior Brette Stout will be one of the hundreds of musicians performing in the 18th annual Vacaville Jazz Festival produced by the Vaca Jazz Society from Sept. 15-17 in numerous locations.

While Stout was not yet born when the yearly tip of the fedora to America’s indigenous musical art form began, one may deduce that she was genetically predisposed to be a part of it. Stout’s father, Ken Stout, and her uncle – her father’s twin, Keith Stout – are longtime staples of the local jazz scene.

Source: Vacaville Jazz Festival includes local musicians