In addition to the Introduction to Art/Music program, elective courses in music appreciation, choral, and instrumental are also offered.
There are also many other venues for musically inclined students to hone their talents. The Ursuline Singers, Cantors, and Instrumental groups provide instruction and performance opportunities. In the spring, students take the lead in producing and performing in a Broadway-themed cabaret.
2022 - A Spring Concert
The April 2022 Concert in the Tully Family Auditorium - Gymnasium once again offered an evening of beautiful vocals and instrumental music. In a tribute to the Class of 2022, the orchestra played Remember Me from the movie Coco as baby pictures of the Seniors were displayed on a screen.
2022 - Our 4th Annual Cabaret Raised Funds for Ukraine
Ursuline students again took the initiative to entirely produce a Broadway review with the purpose of raising funds for a charity of the students’ choosing.
On March 4 and March 5, 2022, they raised over $2,000 which they donated to Voices of Children, a Ukrainian non-profit that helps children affected by the current warfare occurring in Ukraine, and Sanctuary for Families, a New York non-profit that helps victims of domestic abuse and their children.
Twenty-two students performed and seven participated as the Crew. Students cast, directed, choregraphed, created costumes, performed and produced the shows.
The Spring Music and Dance Performance, "A Breath of Fresh Air" on April 28, 2021 took place on Kelly Mac Field. This was an accomplishment for all of our performing groups after a challenging year of teaching and learning through a pandemic. We were very fortunate to have a beautiful evening to hold our first outdoor performance. Due to having two cohorts and students remote, this had been the first time in the school year that each ensemble performed--played, danced, or sung--together.
Our middle school chorus sang two pieces under the direction of Ms. Rosemary Clarizio. The first was The Beautiful Rain arranged by Janet Gardner This piece fit perfectly with having an outdoor performance. The second piece was a Disney Princess Medley arranged by Mac Huff.
The High School Strings class, under the direction of Ms. Kelly Gentry, performed three pieces that were chosen to reflect the variety of music and styles they have worked on throughout the past year. They performed an arrangement of Johann Sebastian Bach's Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, an arrangement of Billie Eilish's Lovely, and Habanerafrom the opera, Carmen composed by Georges Bizet.
The Advanced Orchestra performed after overcoming many challenges throughout the school year including moving rehearsals to the afternoon, splitting the group into different classrooms to allow social distancing, and learning music over Zoom. The students voted on performing Fanfare and Flourishes and learned Hakuna Matata in two weeks for this performance. The Wind Blows Where It Will was the most challenging piece and was chosen by Ms. Gentry to be performed because just like you cannot control the wind, we cannot control the challenges we may face, especially during a pandemic.
The Junior and Honors Choirs were combined to perform for this concert, and were directed by Ms. Wendy Harmer. The first piece performed was Amazing Grace arranged by Francisco Nunez. They also sang an arrangement of the traditional Native American, Shoshone Love Song, arranged by Roger Emerson. The finale of the concert was For Good bySteven Schwarz and arranged by Mac Huff.
The marvelous Spring Concert in April 2019 offered a thoughtful and impressive selection of pieces. From the Middle School Choir singing Blackbird, by the Beatles, a capella to the Honors Choir performing the ethereal Alleluia by Randall Thompson, there was something for every audience member to enjoy. And not just in English. The Junior Choir sang a complex Bach piece in German.
On the instrumental side, the Beginning Strings showed courage and poise after only 5 months of study and the Wind Ensemble brought joy with the upbeat Remember Me. The Orchestra was tremendous in performing Arirang, a beautiful Korean song based on the pentatonic scale.
All who attended our Christmas Concert in December 2018 were treated to a fabulous evening of beautiful and challenging music from our choral and instrumental ensembles.
Our Middle School Choir opened the concert singing ancient as well as well-known carols in English, Latin, German and French. The Wind Ensemble received a standing ovation after their piece, Highlights from The Greatest Showman dazzled the audience. Members of the Junior Choir performed the The Christmas Song getting the audience in the holiday spirit while the Orchestra proved that they could interpret their great version of Imagine Dragons hit, Radioactive.
The Honors Choir shared three beautiful seasonal pieces, including See Amid the Winter's Snow and then joined with the Junior Choir to perform "Christmas in the Great Hall" featuring solos by Olivia Cook and Christina Yavdosnyak. The Symphony Orchestra musically delivered a unique arrangement of the Shaker tune, Simple Gifts.
The much- anticipated finale showcased the scope of the Performing Arts program as all the instrumental and choral groups recreated The Hallelujah Chorus with much fanfare bringing the festivities to a close.
Before the concert started, we held our Tri-M Music Honor Society Induction. Tri-M selection is based on scholarship, character and service, along with a high level of proficiency in music. Congratulations to the newest members of this honorary organization.
Congratulations to the Performing Arts Department for preparing such a wonderful evening of music! Thank you to our Performing Arts faculty: Ms. Rosemary Kennedy, Dr. Laurie Adamo, and Mr. Mark Collins. The excellent photos are by Chris Pope of Pope Photography.
At the 2018 Spring Concert, the talented Sixth Grade String Class began the evening with selections that displayed excellent rhythm and impressed us with how much they have learned in just one year. The fantastic Middle School Choir, under the direction of Music Department Chair Ms. Rosemary Rossi Kennedy '89, processed into the gym singing an upbeat Bora Maisha Life is the Best Gift. The gifted soloists featured in Songs of a Disney Princess received thunderous applause. They were Violet McCann-Anthony, Gianna D’Ambrosio, Devon Keane, Evelyn Gassman, and Katherine Timmons.
The Ninth and Eighth Grade String Class treated us to a new arrangement of Amazing Grace which showed off their fine pizzicato and bowing skills, and highlighted soloist Mary Branley ‘21. The piece was arranged and directed by Mr. Mark Collins, a new member of our music faculty.
When the Middle School yielded the stage to our high school music groups, we were ready for even more musical riches! The percussionists added a lovely touch to the Wind Ensemble’s performance of Hedwig’s Theme as conducted by Mr. John Benza. The wonderful Junior Choir, under the direction of Dr. Jean Boehler, offered two very different musical selections and sang both superbly. The Honors Choir, extraordinary as always, blended their voices like beautiful tapestries.
The finale of the Romeo and Juliet Overture performed by our exceptional Symphonic Orchestra began with a sweet melody, progressed to a dramatic middle section, and ended with harmonies that led us to imagine the lovers embracing as the tune played out. Notable also were the outstanding violin soloists, Olivia Ross ’18 and Geraldine Goodman ‘18.
Our 2017 Christmas Concert began in candlelight, singing about a hope for peace. Ms. Killebrew was the animated voice for the famous poem, Twas the Night Before Christmas. She was accompanied by a spirited Wind Ensemble, led by their conductor, Mr. John Benza.
The Middle School Choir, led by Ms. Rosemary Rossi Kennedy '89, wowed all with an incredible arrangement of Wenceslas Canon for Voice, Chimes, Drum. The Middle and High School choirs, led by Dr. Jean Boehler, each performed their own version of Jingle Bells, made complete with... Jingle Bells!
The Symphonic Orchestra played The Little Drummer Boy and How the Grinch Stole Christmas. There was no Grinch here as the Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, and Choirs led an audience participation Christmas Carol Sing-A-Long. We concluded our concert festival with our annual Hallelujah Chorus with all ensembles to end with a bang!
That same evening, the Tri-M Music Honor Society welcomed 60 new members, bringing the total number to 124!
The Spring Concert in April 2017 included the Glee Club's performance of Bohemian Rhapsody, to thunderous applause, and the Wind Ensemble's Caribbean Carnival, which featured different instruments such as castanets and drums.
Soloists Christina Yavdashnyak '20 and Catherine O'Donoghue '19 were wonderful. The trumpet solo by Jessica Abbattista '17 was a real treat – a lullaby on an unexpected instrument – performed with exceptional feel and backed up superbly by the Symphonic Orchestra. A dramatic Beethoven number closed the night.