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The 2016-2017 Christian Brothers High School Band continued to grow in size and achievements this year. This is the first year the band program has grown to over 100 students, marking a new record from last year as the largest band in CBHS history. The Concert Band started its year by playing at the Ring Ceremony Mass on August 10th, bringing in the new senior class of 2017. On October 19, the Historic Band had the honor of playing at the Installation Mass of the new bishop of Memphis, Bishop Holley. The Jazz Band and the Pep Band showed once again the talent and enthusiasm the students have for the arts and for the school.
The Historic Band had a respectable schedule of many important performances, starting the school year with the performance for St. Patrick’s 150th Anniversary Celebration at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in early September. They played at the Shiloh 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service, followed by a tour of the historic site. In November the band played at the Massing of the Colors Veterans Ceremony and the Veterans Day Parade, after which they returned to the Christian Brothers and left immediately for the Quarterfinal football game against MBA in Nashville. This immediate back to back performance schedule, though challenging, proved that the Christian Brothers Historic Band Members are resilient and hard working for their school.
The Pep Band, as always, brings overflowing team spirit and energy to every court and stadium that tries to contain them. They rallied support for the football and basketball team with the help of the student section. They energized the crowd as the CBHS basketball team overcame MUS in the last seconds of gameplay. The band cheered through hot and cold weather for the football team, making the games that much more entertaining to watch and be a part of. They gave respect to Memphis Catholic High by playing their fight song in place of their now discontinued band program. The CBHS Pep Band even paid a visit to Christian Brothers University to play for their Homecoming, helping to energize their crowds by playing their fight song and cheers for the fans to enjoy.
The Christian Brothers Concert Band showed its talent this 2016-2017 school year with excellence in all its works. In the fall the band performed with CBHS graduate of 1991 alumnus Barrett Seals, a world-renowned English Horn and Oboe Player of the Coast Guard Band. He has performed with the American Wind Symphony Orchestra, he is a Christian Brothers Hall of Famer, and the featured soloist/performer at the 2016 fall concert. He played English horn with the Band “The Girl with the Flaxen Hair” piece by Claude Debussy, performed an oboe duet with senior Kris Foster for the piece “Minuet Petite”, and soloed “Variations on a Theme of Glinka” with the oboe as well. The fall concert also featured seniors Seth Klumph and Yitao Li in the song “Variations and Theme” and Jonathan Forcherio in the work “Morceau Symphonique.”
The Jazz Band had a great list of performances for the 2016-2017 year. They featured at the Taste of CBHS, played for several schools such as Immaculate Conception and OLPH, and played wonderful Holiday and Spring concerts. From the Jazz Band came the Saxophone Quartet, starring Austin Lopez, Johnathan Radcliff, Andrew Scherson, and Chris Donati. On March 19th, they performed at Trinity in the Fields Anglican Church.
The concert band received Strength 1 Superior Ratings in the highest difficulty grade level, Grade 6, in Performance and Sight Reading at the WSTBOA Concert Festival playing the songs “Piccadilly Ragtime March” and “Nilesdance,” a piece written by Christian Brothers Band Hall of Famer, David Holsinger.
From March 23rd-27th, the Christian Brothers Band toured the south with performances in Asheville, North Carolina; Charleston, South Carolina; and Florence, Alabama. The students had the pleasure of playing in front of the Biltmore Mansion, followed by a tour of the mansion. The band then performed at the Southern Heritage National Concert Festival, where they proudly took first place. The band then toured Fort Sumter and the USS Yorktown Aircraft Carrier with a subsequent boat tour of the Charleston Harbor. The final stop was in Florence, Alabama, where the Christian Brothers band played at W.C. Handy’s birth home, nicknamed the “Father of the Blues.” The Band has now performed in every state in the South.
On May 7th the band played their spring concert to standing room only at the Halloran Center. The concert was named Symphonic Dances, which featured “Memphis Blues” by W.C. Handy, “Western One-Step,” "Mambo" from "West Side Story" and “Masque” by McBeth. To wrap up the year, the band performed at the Christian Brothers Graduation held at Hope Church.
2018 Band Vice-President