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Ending on a High Note

Ending on a High Note

Every spring at SBS, the pews of the sanctuary and the chapel fill up with eager fans excited to hear the musical talents of our performing arts students. From vocal ensembles to instrumental solos, the sounds of music echo throughout the chapel and sanctuary walls. With music in their hearts, student after student confidently sings or plays the notes of the selected songs.

The Spring Choir Concert held this year was a night to remember for everyone in attendance. The sanctuary came alive with a mix of traditional and contemporary selections, from “Blue Moon” and “One Day More” to “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” and “Jesus Is Coming Back.” Along with impressive large-group performances, soloists also had their moments to shine. Finally, alumni joined seniors on the stage to sing “Blessing,” a long-standing spring concert tradition.

Director of Arts Cindy Blades said of the concert, “The annual concert is a highlight of the school year for me because it showcases our thriving choral program, from sixth graders all the way to twelfth graders. Under the talented direction of Becky Martin, our choir students sang beautifully with joy and enthusiasm, captivating the audience with their wonderful voices.”

This year, the SBS Arts Department started the Arts Advocate Award, which will be given every year at the season’s last choral concert. Director of Arts Cindy Blades gave the award to alumni parents and said, "The 2023 Arts Advocate Award is given to recognize the outstanding support of alumni parents Kim and Steve Ellis, who go to all arts events, including visual art shows, instrumental and choral concerts, one-act plays, and musical performances. In addition to their financial support, they have worked behind the scenes on props and costumes for several productions. Their last child graduated in 2020, yet they continue to support SBS Arts by attending and encouraging our young artists!”

After the concert, Class of 2023 choir members and their fans remained for the annual Senior Showcase. Wearing their respective college destination t-shirts, the soon-to-be graduates performed special solos featuring entertaining performances that included songs like “Free Fallin,’” “Super Trouper,” “Man or Muppet,” and “Someone Like You.” Congratulations to our seniors: Gerry Vazquez, Grace Quach, Fubo Liu, Linley Norris, Caroline Marshall, Scarlett Gunn, Dami Briggs, Edward Millard, Jackson Tidmore, Sloane Harrison, Nathan Flato, Caroline Martinez, Emily Bolling, Alek Moya, Elaine Adams, Arrow Brown, Grayson Gandolfo, and Charley Schwinger!

At this year’s Spring Instrumental Concert, the Hankamer Chapel swelled with quick-tempo notes and moving melodies from the James Bond theme to ZZ Top, echoing from the farthest corners to reach the audience. Chords were struck, and harmonies melded seamlessly to make this final concert of the season one to remember, especially for fans of the classic rock genre.

Director of Arts Cindy Blades enjoyed the concert: “It was thrilling to see the Hankamer Chapel packed as students in grades 6–12 performed a variety of well-known songs like “Skyfall” from the James Bond movie and “Funky Town” by the Luck Chops! Mr. Hickenbottom and our student musicians played a great range of musical selections that were both delightful and entertaining. I am very proud of our performing arts students, both choral and instrumental! The 2022-2023 school year has been an exciting one filled with talented vocalists and musicians.” 

Throughout the concert, Director of Instrumental Music Kendel Hickenbottom played alongside his students while conducting, recognizing and praising them for their achievements. “These students are incredibly talented and doing amazing things with these instruments. Some of them have picked up playing two or three instruments.” Hickenbottom concluded by thanking his students for investing their time in music and their parents for seeing the importance of music in their lives. “I hope that by doing this, they will have a love for music that will be with them forever.”

Grade 6 Band featured solos from Karlyse Firenza (drums), Tess Kelley (drums), Carl Rubly (piano), Daniel Going (alto sax), Jonah Kates (trombone), Mason Mettenbrink (trombone), Matthew Murray (trumpet), Findley Caballero (clarinet), Jacob Field (French horn), and Anthony Jin (trombone). The award-winning Grades 7–12 Band featured solos from Austin Fuhrman (trumpet), Brandon Sek (trumpet), Zane Brannan (piano), Elijah Parrish (alto sax), James Enger (guitar), Will Adcox (trombone), James Enger (bass), Kendalyn Firenza (drums), Nadia Fabre (trombone), Will Young (tenor sax), Ally Enger (drums), and Regan Gamble (percussion).

Thank you to all of our SBS families, dedicated parents and Arts Patrons members and board for their continued support of the arts at SBS this year.

Photos from Spring Choir Concert

Photos from Spring Instrumental Concert