Tag Archives: Music

Emily’s Last High School Band Concert

Emily had her last high school band concert the other night. It’s been amazing listening to her grow in her talent of playing flute over the past 8 years. She was among those few recognized as a State Band participant and also received several awards for her work that she does with the different bands.

Despite being a wonderfully talented flutist, she has been stuck playing in the Freshman Band through all 4 years of school. Her dance team, Pacesetters, is scheduled at the same time as the upper level Symphonic Band (in which she would’ve been placed). She made the decision 4 years ago that she’d rather play in the Freshman Band so that she could keep up with her love of dancing.

In the role of upperclassman in a younger band, she has often assisted with sectionals and playing tests. There are times, it seems, that she sometimes functioned as a student teacher, albeit unofficially. This past year, she also played in the Concert Band (the next level up) – being allowed to do so by just coming and sitting in and practically sight-reading. She’s quite a talented young gal.

Enjoy a short piece, played by the Concert Band – John Phillip Sousa’s “Semper Fidelis”. You’ll see Emily and her section stand up to play at about the 1:35 mark.

Finally, here are some pictures of Emily among the other award winners and also being presented a rose by fellow senior, Jonas. All of the senior women were acknowledged and presented a rose by one of the guys.

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Anna plays in Percussion Ensemble at KSU

Anna has been really enjoying her studies in Music Education at Kansas State University. Despite focusing her studies on violin and some voice, she is required to participate in a band comprised of students playing instruments that are not their own.

There was a concert a couple weeks ago and we were unable to attend, but a friend sent us a video of Anna playing the marimba. You’ll find her to the front and left as you are watching. The piece is a theme and variations on Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.

Singing National Anthem for Big 12 Basketball Tournament

Being involved with the Kansas City Symphony Chorus can sometimes have its perks – including getting asked to sing the National Anthem as a quartet before one of the Big 12 Basketball Tournament games. 

I met with 3 of my fellow Chorus members early on the morning of March 9 at the Sprint Center. We were escorted down to the floor for sound check and figuring out where we would be standing. We then spent the next hour in the actual Green Room – the one used by performers when they’re at the Center for big concerts. After hanging out a while, waiting for the Iowa State and Oklahoma State fans to fill in the arena, we were summoned to mid-court along with a Color Guard from the KC Police Department. We performed a wonderful 4-part harmony rendition of The Star Spangled Banner, followed by a rousing applause upon its completion. 

We’re working to get a copy of the Jumbotron footage and audio; so, hopefully I will be able to post that here soon. In the meantime, here’s a picture of us at mid-court before the teams and crowds arrived. 

Once we were done singing, we were able to go sit in the front row right behind the OSU band. This was our view as the game started – with the players on the other end of the court. 

After the first game (which Iowa State won), we sang God Bless America for the crowd before the Kansas-TCU game. I didn’t get to stick around for that game because I had to go to work, but it would’ve been a fun game to watch.

Emily plays KMEA All-State Band

Emily was selected to play for the KMEA All-State 5A and 6A Band. What an honor and a testament to the hard work she has done with the flute. The whole family was there to listen – Linda was there for professional purposes already, Anna drove down from Manhattan, and I drove down from Kansas City. Additionally, Linda’s parents drove down from Topeka. It was great having the whole family there to listen to Emily and the rest of the All-State Band.

Unfortunately, we were unable to record any of the concert, but I have a nice picture that was taken during the final bow.

Emily plays Kabalevsky

Emily played in the winter piano recital a couple weeks ago. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make it due to work obligations, but Linda was able to record it on her iPhone. I realized earlier today that I hadn’t actually watched the video.

So, here’s Emily playing Variations, Op 40 No1 by Kabalevsky.

Anna and Emily & The Wizard of Oz

Anna has spent the last couple months rehearsing “The Wizard of Oz” with the high school theater program. She has had rehearsal almost every weekday after school since before Christmas. Emily played flute in the pit.


I did musicals in both high school and college; Linda also played flute in the pit for musicals. This was quite a “circle of life” kind of moment. In addition, the musical director was a former classmate from our days as music majors at Kansas State University 25 years ago. Truly, a circle of life.

Anna was selected for several chorus/cast parts – she poured herself into each of the positions she was asked to perform. She was on stage several times, but the best was as a Munchkin. She had the absolutely best “munchkin voice”; one couldn’t help but smile when she spoke/sang her lines.


She also portrayed a resident of Oz; additionally, she portrayed a monkey and a “tornado” dancer (blinking strobe lights dancing around during the tornado scene).


Fortunately, we have one picture of Emily playing flute in the orchestra pit.


Finally, each cast member had a brief “biography” in the program. Here’s Anna’s text from the program:

Anna is very excited for her final show at South. Her previous roles at South are a Dance Hall Girl in Jekyll and Hyde, a chimney sweep and Ms Smythe in Mary Poppins, and Ensemble in Hairspray. She also played violin in the pit for Peter Pan and Pippin Outside of South, Anna has been ensemble in Beauty and the Beast and Suessical, Jr. At school, she is in Symphonic Orchestra, Heritage Choir, and the marching band. Outside school, she is in her church youth group and youth band, Girl Scouts, and piano. Anna would like to thank you mom, Linda, for teaching everything she knows about music, always being there for her, and being her biggest fan. Anna would also like to thank her grandparents for making the hour drive to come see her in every little thing she does, her dad and sister, current and previous music teachers, friends, and youth group leaders for their continuous support and Nina Molleson for teaching her not just dance, but the importance of being the best person you can be in life.




Anna plays violin recital – Romance in F major, Op 50 (Beethoven)

Anna has been working on a fairly big violin piece since January 2015. Her goal was to be selected to be a soloist on the “Masterworks Concert” with the high school orchestra as a Senior. This concert involves one vocalist, one band instrument, and one orchestra instrument performing with the orchestra or band as the accompanying music. It’s a pretty big deal.

She’s worked amazingly hard on this piece, including memorizing this work that is over six minutes long. Her audition reportedly went well, but, unfortunately, she was not chosen for the concert. There were reportedly so many great choices, it was hard for the music faculty at the high school to choose what would work best for the concert.

Despite being a bit saddened by not being chosen for the concert, Anna has kept her chin up and has carried on. She performed the piece for the studio recital for her teacher. Enjoy the hard work that Anna has accomplished:

PS: Linda is accompanying. 

Anna and Emily play Christmas Recital

Linda has had her piano students play a Christmas recital each year at a local nursing home. It’s easily a favorite of the students – they get to play fun Christmas songs and it really pleases the audience. 

Enjoy the pieces played by Anna and Emily:

Anna: What Child is This?

Anna: Away in a Manger

Emily: O Holy Night/Silent Night

Emily: Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas