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  • Writer's pictureCarla DeFord

Town Day: AHS Jazz Band and Madrigal Singers "pull off a great show"

Updated: Sep 17, 2018

AHS Jazz Band at Town Day

After only two weeks of rehearsal, and despite the challenge of having to integrate a significant number of new members, the Arlington High School (AHS) Jazz Band and Madrigal Singers gave a polished concert to an enthusiastic audience on Town Day.

The jazz band, a multiple award-winning ensemble, which included seven new instrumentalists, announced their presence in no uncertain terms with their signature opener,"The Chicken" by Pee Wee Johnson. The program continued with a Dizzy Gillespie favorite "Salt Peanuts"; "Diana" written, arranged, and directed by senior Julian Carpenter with vocal soloist Olivia Carpenter; "Sweet Home Chicago" with vocal soloists Joey Dalton and Franco D'Agostino; "Hurricane Season" by Troy Andrews; and "Caravan" by Juan Tizol and Duke Ellington with percussion soloist Julian Carpenter; and "Revelation is Here" by Take 6 and the Yellow Jackets with the madrigal singers and featuring vocal soloists Ben Horsburgh and Franco D'Agostino.

"Town Day is always special for us," said jazz band and AHS instrumental music director, Sabato ("Tino") D'Agostino, who added, "The electric atmosphere, playing on the main stage, and the response of the audience all make this concert unique. While it is very challenging to get the band ready in just two weeks, it is helpful to start right away at this fast pace. The students and I are very motivated by having such a tight deadline. We are all so excited about performing at this wonderful event."

The madrigal singers, directed by Madalyn Kitchen, who have eight new members out of 28 vocalists, sang "Il Est Bel et Bon" by Pierre Passereau; "Chili Con Carne" by Anders Edenroth with Khalil Waldron out front at the slow cooker actually making chili; "Dream" by Johnny Mercer, and "Revelation Is Here" with the jazz band.

"Singing at Town Day is such an interesting challenge and so much fun," said Madalyn Kitchen, director of the madrigal singers. "The students are just getting to know each other," she noted, "and they have to learn the music quickly and efficiently. It's simply miraculous to see how they rise to the occasion; they work their behinds off and pull off a great show, as they always do. They not only learn the music, they memorize it and take it to a level of performance that is truly amazing to see so early in the school year."

The crowd gathered in front of Town Hall at 11 a.m. on Saturday, September 15, seemed to agree with the directors that this was indeed an "amazing" performance and a "wonderful event."

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