Music 5K Goes the Distance, Attracting Hundreds of Music Fans
Tuesday, March 5, 2013 • 3:24pm
WEST CALDWELL, NJ - Singing, dancing, original musical compositions and even hand-made guitars were showcased by the talented students within the Caldwell-West Caldwell school district on Saturday when staff and students came together for the annual Music 5K. The performers entertained hundreds of audience members at the five-hour event held at James Caldwell High School (JCHS) that is designed to raise money for the school’s music program.
Formerly known as the Music Marathon, the program is coordinated by the school’s Music and More Booster Club. Groups, including the JCHS orchestra, chorus, band, jazz band, Madrigal Singers, Women of Note, Retromen, and a host of individual musicians, performed a variety of classical, contemporary, whimsical and original compositions for more than five hours, showcasing the depth and breadth of musical talent in the schools.
The event began in the school’s Center for Performing Arts, first with a selection of pieces by the high school orchestra, led by Nate Lienhard, then by the JCHS Chorus that performed a medley of pop tunes, directed by choral supervisor Elsie Timpson.
JCHS Chorus Credit: Christine Corliss
The high school band, directed by Andrew Burrows, next took to the stage.
JCHS Band Credit: Christine Corliss
Following the band performance, the jazz band's session was next, featuring a solo by Joe Salter on saxophone.
Joe Salter on saxophone, JCHS Jazz Band Credit: Christine Corliss
After the completion of the on-stage production, the crowd then moved to the cafeteria for a coffeehouse experience, listening to performances by the Retromen, an all-male singing group led by David Modero; the Madrigal Singers and Women of Note, both led by choral supervisor Elsie Timpson; the String Consort; Percussion Ensemble; and a host of individual student performers.
The coffeehouse started out with Timpson directing the Madrigal Singers.
Choral Supervisor Elsie Timpson, Madrigal Singers Credit: Christine Corliss
Segueing from the Madrigals, the Women of Note sang for the crowd.
JCHS Women of Note Credit: Christine Corliss
Following the Women of Note, The Retromen stepped forward to entertain the audience with their three and four part harmonies.
JCHS Retromen Credit: Christine Corliss
This segment of ensemble performances was complete with selections of chamber music from the String Consort, directed by William Downey and energetic pieces from the Percussion Ensemble, led by Peter Abazia.
The final portion of the event was reserved for individual performances. Seventh graders Ashvin Nagarajan and Ken Axe both played violin solos, with Axe performing a medley of military songs.
Ashvin Nagarajan Credit: Christine Corliss
Ken Axe Credit: Christine Corliss
Split Statement, a vocal and guitar group, featured singer Giselle Fernandez, a senior, and singer-songwriter-guitarist Jacob Ploch, a junior, performed several original compositions.
Giselle Fernandez and Jacob Ploch Credit: Christine Corliss
Over a three year time period, Ploch built the guitar he performed with.
Jacob Ploch Credit: Christine Corliss
The rock band GNGR, featuring tenth graders Garrett Bell on vocals and guitar, Jake Lefkowitz on lead guitar, Jake Miller on bass, Michael Berry on keyboards and Nick VanLeer on drums, rocked the crowd with its original rock ‘n roll blues compositions.
The final performance of the night was by pianist and composer John Franek, a junior at JCHS, who performed three original piano compositions.
John Franek Credit: Christine Corliss
The event raises funds for the music program, providing special equipment requests, scholarships and more.
For further information:
James Caldwell High School
265 Westville Avenue
West Caldwell, NJ
Music Department Website