It was a full two hour program for adults and all our students were enthralled. They watched eagerly to see which instruments were used for those opening bars to Jaws. They noted that the French horn section turned their horns sideways during Raiders of the Lost Ark. It felt like the string section soared during the theme to ET. At the intermission many students commented that this show was “even better” than Children’s show they had seen in the fall. When they played Star Wars Main Theme I looked around and every students was glowing and excited.
The children asked to play John Williams as background music as we completed spelling exercises the following morning. Spelling was punctuated with gleeful comments about how loud the timpani had been, how gentle the harp sounded or how beautifully the concertmaster had played the solo violin.
I hope that we can continue this tradition of going to quality music even after our theme of music is over. I am already eyeing COC’s Magic Flute for next year!
by Catherine O’Keeffe
Steven Reineke, the conductor of the Toronto Symphony Pops series gave a background story to each of the chosen pieces. Some anecdotes he told:
- He told us that Steven Spielberg collaborated with John Williams for all, but two movies.
- When Williams saw the finished, but un-scored Schindler’s List, he was so moved that he suggested a better composer than he should write the music. Spielberg agreed, but lamented that they were all dead!
- John Williams was nominated for an Oscar 50 times and won five of those.
- Steven Reineke’s parents took him to see Jaws when he was five. He has been afraid to swim in the ocean ever since
- The sheet music for Star Wars: The Force Awakens has only just been released for orchestras, so we were one of the first audiences in the world to hear it.