Honors musicians perform at Festival Disney, enjoy theme park attractions


Maureen Frink

Walking on sunshine-- Students in honors band, orchestra, and choir classes traveled to Florida from April 4 to April 8. The students performed in the 15th annual Festival Disney.

Pei Yi Zhuo, Editor-in-Chief

120 students in honors band, orchestra, and choir classes traveled to Florida from April 4 to April 8. While there, they participated in the 15th annual Festival Disney. 15 chaperones accompanied the group.

At Festival Disney, the band, orchestra, and choirs played pieces to a small audience of judges, composed of conductors from colleges, one of whom would then provide personal commentary regarding the performance as part of a live clinic. The ensembles performed on April 5. The band and orchestra played at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, while the choir sang at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort. Students from the high school also gave performances for parents and other students participating in the program.  

Kaitlin McIntyre
Playing a tune– Student musicians performed with their directors at Festival Disney in Orlando, Florida
with an educational clinic after the performance with a college conductor.

“We are very proud of our students’ performances at Festival Disney this year,” Associate Choir Director Louise Carrozza said.

Prior to the trip, students practiced in ensembles assembled from field trip participants.

“This means extra rehearsals outside of the school day before we leave for the trip to work on refining our performance and achieving a good, balanced sound. Our students rose to this challenge and played very well,” Carroza said.

In addition to performances, musicians and chaperones on the Florida trip partook in recreational offerings as well. They went to Disney Springs, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, as well as Epcot. Besides Disney attractions, students also experienced Universal Studios and Universal’s Islands of Adventures. In the evenings, students sometimes had the opportunity to attend performances.

Each chaperone tended to a group of eight to 11 students. They were responsible for monitoring their wards during the trip, leading them through airports as well as theme park entrances and exits. Pediatrician Dr. Deepa Limaye, mother of senior Rohit Limaye, accompanied the group.

Kaitlin McIntyre
Do re mi– Choir members perform at the 15th annual Festival Disney. The student musicians travelled to Disney from April 4 to the 8.

“It was a relief to know that our students were safe with her,” biology teacher Mary Stewart said.

Stewart also enjoyed the time she spent with her students outside of the classroom.

“Students invited me to go on rides with them, and I faced my fears and went. I was especially afraid to go on Rockin’ Rollercoaster . . . but my [ninth period] students convinced me to go and I had a blast,” Stewart said.

Any student in the honors music classes had the option of going on the five-day trip. Junior Bella Cruz, who participated as a choir member, decided to go because it was the first time in her high school career that she had the opportunity. She recommends the trip to fellow singers.

“I loved every minute of it, between being in the most magical place on earth with my friends and peers, and also being able to perform within the two honors choirs, and get feedback from a professional choir director was an absolutely amazing experience that I would love to live all over again,” Cruz said.

The trip cost around $1,780. Participants were free to cover the price tag with a portion of the funds they raised through music department fundraisers. Parents and students attended an informational meeting earlier this school year to learn more about this opportunity. The high school participates in Festival Disney every other year.