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CLASS OF 2023: Seniors Will Miss Community They’ve Created

by The Hawk staff

As the Class of 2023 prepares to spread its wings, many will carry fond memories of the flock they found at HHS. Those who responded to The Hawk survey counted friends, teachers and the school community among what they’ll miss the most after graduation.

In a senior class of 169 students, many of whom have been together since elementary school, it makes sense that the relationships they’ve made would be deemed so important. Let’s face it: high school is not an easy journey. Finding your community, your “people,” can help make the classes, homework, and everything else that comes with being a teenager a little easier.

“I’ll miss the community I have built around me and all the activities I’ve done,” said Ava Sullivan. Kathryn Shields called the Hanover community “tight-knit.”

For Abbey Kinzel, that community came in Mrs. Molloy’s chem class and the Drama Club. Cassie Lopes found it in marching band. For Joe Clasby, it came from friends, teachers, and sports. 

Whether the future keeps them local or takes them across the country, seniors will have one thing in common: the loss of familiar faces that, for years, they could count on seeing every day.

“I’ll miss being around my friends I grew up with,” said Dennis Sacco.

Teddy McCrann said it will be hard to leave behind “hanging out with friends basically the entire day.” 

David Quinlan will miss “messing around with the lads and some of the teachers I created relationships with.”

Some seniors cited specific teachers, coaches, or classes they’ll be sad to part with. For Sophie Rathgeber, that includes “the teachers who make me smile when I’m having a bad day.” Bree Cole says it’s those who “have played a huge role in my success over the past four years.” Others named Mrs. Pereira, Mr. Molloy, Mrs. Martin, and the library.

Of all the classes he took, sports he played and experiences he had, Henry Gorbey says the thing he will miss most is “lunch.”

With plans to start working construction after graduation, Cam Barron will miss something he truly will no longer be able to do: “skipping class.”

CLASS OF 2023: Band Members Reflect on Special Journey

By Jake Faghan, ’23

Staff Writer

It’s that time of year, when the weather gets warmer and the senior countdown gets closer and closer to graduation. As time speeds by, the class of 2023 prepares to embrace a new chapter of life. With each graduating student, comes a story they offer. With the journey of the Class of 2023 ending, we reflect with senior members of the Pride of Hanover Band on their high school stories.

How has music shaped you as a person?

Cassie Lopes – “Music was always there for me when I needed anything. I love to play and listen when I’m sad and it’s a wonderful coping mechanism. … Something great that came from band was my confidence. Performing on an instrument like the horn is so difficult, and as I started to get good and performed well, my confidence in other areas definitely also improved.”

Emily Dillon – “Music has had the biggest impact out of everything in my life. So much so that I’ve decided to pursue it as a career. It’s given me so many opportunities that have helped me become a better leader, musician, and person. I loved playing with my friends and making new ones along the way.”

Bree Cole – “Music has shaped me as a person by giving me the confidence to believe in myself. Although sometimes things were hard or pieces seemed difficult, I was able to persevere and try harder.”

How will music be part of your future?

Cassie – “In college I plan to be in the pep band and the concert band at my school. …. I enjoy the marching/stands side of things as well as the more classical side of things and I want to be able to continue to have both as part of my life.”

Emily – “Music will be a big part of my college experience since I will be majoring in trumpet performance. I’m so excited to see what type of opportunities I will have over the next years.” 

Bree – “In college, I hope to join the Pep Band (and potential future matching band) as well as be in dance companies and ensembles.”

What does playing the traditional ‘Homeward Bound’ mean to you?

Cassie – “I’ve been thinking back to everything I’ve done over the past four years with band, and I have loved it. I’m going to miss the safety of that room but with ‘Homeward Bound,’ I know I can always return and be welcomed with open arms. The song means I need to go on to do something bigger and I always have space in the band room to come back to visit.” 

Emily – “It reminds me that even though I’m moving on to a new chapter in my life, I will still always have this to come back to.” 

Bree – “Playing ‘Homeward Bound’ for the last time and as a senior is emotional but exciting. It is playing with my amazing band family for the last time. It means the end of this chapter and the start of my new life.”

What advice would you give the Class of 2024?

Cassie –  “Enjoy every minute of your senior year. It goes by so fast and so much happens, but every moment you spend in that band room or on the stage or on the field, you are creating a memory that will last forever.”

Bree – “Have fun and don’t stress! You will enjoy your senior year as long as you do things that make you happy!”

Emily – “Don’t take anything for granted. You’ll miss the small moments. And take pictures your senior year! It’s always fun to look back on memories and remember the fun times you had.”

* * * 

From the Friday Night Lights of autumn to Concert Blacks, the Pride of Hanover is ready for the future. For those who have to say goodbye, there is one important lesson to keep in mind: no matter what, forever and ever true, You Will Never Walk Alone.

CLASS OF 2023: Early Bird Gets the Worm, and Other Lessons Learned at HHS

By The Hawk staff

Time flies. Try new things. Don’t be afraid of change. Avoid the school bathrooms. These are some of the words of advice from seniors who replied to The Hawk survey. 

Some thought back to their freshman year and what they could have done differently. 

“Definitely try as hard as you can freshman year and then just try to hold onto that,” said David Quinlan. “Freshman year is the easiest, so take advantage of the grade boost.”

Dennis Sacco agreed. “Every year counts so don’t take any lightly. It could greatly affect your future plans.”

Devin Benjamin would have taken more honors classes in ninth grade. “I did not know how big of an impact it would have on my GPA,” she said.

More important than what classes you take is figuring out how you learn best, advised Danny Tawa. “When you discover how [you learn], it can serve you throughout the rest of your life and benefit you tremendously,” he said. “The school work is only the means by which this new understanding is found.”

Developing good study skills will help with every class, said Liam Monahan. “Put in the effort … it will pay off.” 

While academics are important, it’s critical to find some balance so you’re not overwhelmed, many seniors said. 

“Push yourself to work hard, but definitely set limits,” said Teddy McCrann. “I wish I had known that getting a good night’s sleep and just taking a break from work is more important than turning in an assignment, because your teachers are very understanding.”

“Put some pressure on yourself to be the best you can,” echoed Sophie Rathgeber, “but also don’t prevent yourself from having fun in the process.”

“Don’t think high school is all work and no play,” Pat Jones agreed. “You are put in the best environment to make the best memories.”

“Find friends who are there to help you through the difficult years,” said Evelyn Hallaren.

A big part of high school is making discoveries about yourself. The best way to do that, seniors said, is to expand your comfort zone and keep an open mind.

“High school is a place for you to grow, so experiment with what high school has to offer. Try new things,” said Jake Faghan.

“Become involved in the things you love to do simply for the sake of your own joy in those activities,” suggested Mike DeMayo, senior class president.

“Be open to talking to a variety of people,” said Morgan Ceurvels, “because you’ll never know who you’ll become friends with.”

Change can be scary, said Ava Sullivan, but “everything will always work out and you should embrace change with open arms, even if it seems negative.”

Other students advised underclassmen to be true to themselves, do their homework, and try not to overthink everything.

As for the bathrooms, several seniors used their parting words to warn against vaping, congregating or just generally causing mayhem in some of the most-used spaces in the school.

“I would tell younger students to not hang out in the bathrooms,” said Henry Gorbey.

Jay LaFreniere agreed … “unless you want to meet Dean Hannigan.”

CLASS OF 2023: Hawks Take Flight for Careers, College

By Paulina Leskow, ’24

Staff Writer

As the school year comes to an end, the Class of 2023 is preparing for the future. After four years of bells, cafeteria lunches, and spirit weeks, seniors are looking forward to the next phase of their lives. 

Many seniors who replied to The Hawk survey plan to pursue majors in business. For marketing, Liam Joy will head to Endicott College; Bobby Delkouras, Noah Andrade and Daniel Tawa will study at Bentley University; and Luke Segalla will go to Westfield State. Aria Arabia will attend the Fashion Institute of Technology for fashion business management. Brian Bellerby, Holly Rossi, Maddie Poirier and Shane Coleman plan to major in business at UMass Amherst, while Alexa Rowe will head to Clemson, Max Aiello to the University of New Hampshire and Ethan Nosek to Merrimack. Jay Champagne will attend UMass Boston to explore the field, along with Owen Carolan, who will have a sports management concentration. Jake Peterson will study business and play basketball at Babson University, while Joe Curran will head to Union College for economics and football. 

Noah Hofeman plans to pursue outdoor recreation business administration at the University of Maine-Farmington, while Ned McCann explores entrepreneurship at Siena. Colin DiTullio, Jack Douglas and David Quinlan are attending Bryant University for finance. Other finance majors include Charlie Carroll at the University of Maryland and Gabby Guy at UMass Amherst. Marketing majors include Amanda Tannuzzo at Flagler College, Ava Sullivan at Emmanuel College (with a minor in sociology), Devin Benjamin at UMass Amherst, Mary Elliott at Providence College and Merri DeCoste at Fairfield University. Matt Connerty will study finance and play football at Salve Regina. Sam Burke will study economics at Boston College, while Teddy McCrann will pursue economics and history at Villanova. Emma Hammett will attend Baylor for human resources management.

Several HHS grads will be entering the military. Liam Monahan will attend the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, while John Ryan will join the Coast Guard and Jackson Snyder will head to the Navy. Others will head into the workforce, including Jay LaFreniere, Brodie Carroll and Henry Gorbey, who hope to become electricians, and Cam Barron, who plans to work in construction.

Many students will head to college for cience. Biology majors include Ava Toglia at Fairfield University, Caleb Lawrence at UConn, Colin Kilgoar at Boston College and Jack Sullivan at the College of Charleston. Sophia Marshall-Pelayo will be pre-med at the University of Alabama. Cassie Lopes will study chemistry at the University of Vermont and Kathryn Shields will study environmental and sustainability studies and chemistry at Northeastern. Ben Hickey will attend Bryant for biology and business while also playing football. Going pre-vet will be Jillian Fuller at UConn and Sophie Rathgeber at Rutgers. MaryKate Vermette will attend Coastal Carolina for marine science, while Meghan DeRice studies coastal environ- mental science at Flagler College.

Michael DeMayo will study math, physics, or engineering at Dartmouth College. Michael is among several HHS students who plan to enter fields of engineering. Ryan Freedman will attend the University of Central Florida to study mechanical engineering, as will AJ Leone at the University of Kentucky. Jimmy Godin is heading to the University of Rhode Island to explore the field.

Future nurses include Mary Carven, Rachel Reynolds and Sarah Long, who will head to Sacred Heart University; Ben Lines at Merrimack College; Lexi Rondeau at Quinnipiac; and Abbey Kinzel at Bridgewater State. Gianna Puzzangara will attend Quinnipiac for radiological sciences. Ashley Little will study exercise science at Salisbury University, while Mia Pongratz will pursue it – and soccer – at Virginia Commonwealth University. Health Sciences majors include Hayley Cabral at Providence and Peyton Noonan at Quinnipiac. Pat Jones will pursue a surgical tech program.

Several graduates plan to study psychology, including Abby Armstrong at Ole Miss, Brendan O’Neill at Quinnipiac, Annie Straut at Providence, Annika Corrick at Boston University, and Jake Faghan at UMass Amherst. Cullen Burke is heading to Fairfield University, where he also will play rugby.

Computer science is another popular major among HHS grads, with Caitlyn Jordan heading to Syracuse University, Alex Wood to Stonehill, Dan Nguyen to Carnegie Mellon, Gavin Swenson to Miami University, Joe Clasby to University of South Florida, and Joe Montoya to Wentworth.

Some students will explore their more creative sides. Hayden Daley will attend New York University, majoring in liberal studies and English. Harrison Brewster will attend Bridgewater State to study art and art history. Gina Mignosa will study fashion at Fordham. For film and video, Harper Seelye is going to Hampshire College while Makenzie Conward will head to MassArt. Emily Dillon will attend the Boston Conservatory at Berklee for trumpet performance. 

A few students said they hoped to become teachers. Anna Mahoney will attend Westfield State for elementary education. Erin Shea will major in theater education at New York University, and Bree Cole will attend Stonehill College with a double major of secondary education and English.

Kaya Bianculli is going to Cardiff Metropolitan University in Cardiff, Wales, for media and communications. Other communication majors include Ellasyn Murphy at Clemson and Maeve Sullivan at Coastal Carolina. Morgan Ceurvels will study communication disorders at Sacred Heart.

Ryan Jones will study aviation flight technologies at Bowling Green University. To study criminal justice, Kylie Handrahan will head to Providence College and Seth Willoughby will go to UMass Dartmouth. Matt Arancio will attend the University of New Hampshire for homeland security. Sarah MacDonald will be politics/pre-law at Bryant.

Several seniors who replied to our survey are still undecided about what to pursue. It’s a good reminder that these years are a time of exploration. Whatever their plans, we wish all of the best for the Class of 2023.

Note: Due to our press deadline, this is not a complete list of seniors plans

CLASS OF 2023: Seniors Soar to New Heights

By Abbey Kinzel, ’23

Staff Writer

As a senior, I have made some of my best memories during my years at HHS. Some are the most insanely funny things I’ve ever done or heard of in my life. If you asked me for one of the highlights, I would say taking part in this year’s Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild Drama Fest and making it to the semifinals. Members of the Class of 2023 who replied to The Hawk survey shared their favorite classes, teachers, milestones and moments from the last four years. Some were amazing achievements, while others were the joyful but ordinary days with friends. One thing they all had in common: these memories won’t soon be forgotten.

“Sophomore year Mr. Perry’s class” – Annika Corrick

“Our playoff football game vs Walpole in fall 2022” – Ben Hickey

“The Friday Night Lights, senior activities, Senior Sunrise, and hanging out with my friends” – Bree Cole

“All of my time involved in the music department” –  Cassie Lopes

“The people I met throughout the years” – Emma Anctil

“Fun Fridays with Ms. Mathisen” – Jay Champagne

“Being on the field hockey team” – MaryKate Vermette

“Spirit Week and the pep rallies” – Morgan Ceurvels

“Getting caught sleeping in Mr. Picardi’s zoom sophomore year” – Pat Jones

“Puzzling and Cedar St. Cafe in the library” – Sophie Rathgeber

“Senior year Italy trip run by Mr. Perry” – Teddy McCrann

“Lacrosse” – Matt Connerty

“Spamalot the Musical junior year” – Kaya Bianculli

“Winning the state championship in hockey last year” – Liam Monahan

“Hanging out in the morning with my friends” – Evelyn Hallaren 

“The marine science class’ trip to the aquarium” – Harper Seelye

“Being on the basketball team and getting an ‘and-one’ on senior night” – Danny Tawa  

“The 2022 boys hockey championship at TD Garden” – Joe Clasby

“Winning states in soccer” – anonymous

“First period study senior year – we had munchkins and got no work done” – Sarah MacDonald

“Junior Year rugby” – Seth Willoughby

“Mask breaks” – Luke Segalla

“Mr. Turocy’s stories and Mr. Molloy’s BAM” – Ethan Nosek

“Every time I got the giggles when we were supposed to be quiet” – David Quinlan

“Being part of chorus” – Amanda Tannuzzo

“Lax team my junior year” – Henry Gorbey

“Getting the silly goofies with the lads in school” – Dennis Sacco

“Going to the TD Garden for boys hockey” – Devin Benjamin

“Mask breaks, especially in the spring after AP exam season” – Jake Faghan

“Prom!” – Kathryn Shields

“Spirit Week and the Pep Rally” – Mike DeMayo

Iron Man Saved Marvel from Bankruptcy

By Abbey Kinzel, ’23

Staff Writer

Marvel had been great at producing superhero movies. (I think everyone can agree that statement belongs in the past tense; their movies and TV shows recently haven’t been the best.) But despite the acclaim Marvel received during phase one of the MCU, the company almost filed for bankruptcy in the late ’90s. What saved them was a little movie called Iron Man. When Iron Man came out, it was a huge hit, and Marvel began to create more movies to form a narrative for years to come, like Captain America: The First Avenger, Thor and Guardians of the Galaxy. So let’s take a look back at all three Iron Man movies and see how well they have done.

Iron Man (2008)

The movie starts with Tony Stark  almost dying, then a flashback to a few hours earlier to show he has a lot of money from the manufacture of weapons for the military. He is kidnapped and forced to make one of his most powerful weapons with all the parts he needs in a cave. With the help of this one engineer, they instead make a prototype of the Iron Man suit. Once Tony escapes, he makes more suits and has to battle a former colleague who comes into possession of the prototype suit. This was a good movie, obviously. There is nothing I particularly hate about it, which I’m typically good at. Some worried that casting Robert Downey Jr. as the leading role, and Jon Favreau as the director, were questionable choices. But all in all it’s a good movie. Rotten Tomatoes gives this movie a 94 percent.

Iron Man 2 (2010)

In Iron Man 2, everyone knows that Tony Stark is, get this, Iron Man. The military makes many attempts to make an Iron Man suit of its own so Tony isn’t the only one with a suit and they can control it however they like. The new villain is a guy named Whiplash who, get this, uses electrified whips. So the primary conflict is that Tony is being poisoned on the inside by his tiny arc reactor which is also, ironically, the thing that is keeping him alive. We get introduced to Black Widow – I’ll just keep it at that – and they switched the actor playing Rhodey for Don Cheadle. The movie’s plot is a mix of fighting Whiplash, people trying to obtain blueprints to the Iron Man suit and Tony having a midlife crisis. This movie received 71 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

Iron Man 3 (2013)

After saving New York from being an alien attack in The Avengers, Tony begins to suffer hard. He gets insomnia and anxiety from some kid’s drawing of him going into space with a missile. Tony starts to rely on his Iron Man suits and even makes more of them so they can protect the world when aliens attack in the future. All of this puts a strain on his relationship with his girl, Pepper. With all that going on, a terrorist group called the 10 Rings begins to, guess what, terrorize America under the leadership of a man named the Mandarin. Tony also has to fight these guys that glow and explode. With all that, this movie earned 79 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

Featured image: https://www.gamespot.com/gallery/iron-man-28-easter-eggs-to-look-for-while-you-rewatch-the-mcu-classic/2900-4200/

Fantastic Four Fizzled in Fox’s Hands

By Abbey Kinzel, ’23

Staff Writer

The Fantastic Four has been done so dirty by 20th Century Fox, so much so that the highest rated film on Rotten Tomatoes has earned just 37 percent. I feel like 20th Century Fox can’t get the story right for the silver screen; they have done three films, but some force of nature is keeping them from being any good. But after Disney purchased 20th Century Fox in 2019, the rights returned to Marvel’s hands, so hopefully the story can finally be done right.  Marvel has announced that its MCU Fantastic 4 will hit theaters in February 2025. So let’s dive in and talk about the things we hopefully won’t see in the upcoming movie.

Fantastic Four (2005): The first movie actually got the origin story right, (I’m looking at you, 2015 remake). Reed Richards and Victor von Doom are smart, Reed’s friend Ben is bald and strong, Susan Storm is Victor’s girlfriend and Johnny Storm (Susan’s brother) likes to do stunts. They all go into space and get radiation poisoning from this cloud, and that gives them superpowers. The Fantastic Four minus Victor have to fight the super villain Doom, absolutely no relation to Victor in any way, shape or form (wink wink). With the CGI looking passable, it’s a decent movie standing at 28 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007): In this movie, Reed and Susan are getting ready for their wedding but Reed also has to help the government figure out the cause of multiple supernatural events. The four learn that Silver Surfer is the cause of these events, big surprise. He says he is the “message” that will bring Galactus to Earth so he can munch munch crunch the planet. And it’s up to the Fantastic Four plus Victor von Doom to save the planet. It feels like this was better than the first movie and it has a higher rating, 3 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

Fantastic Four (2015): I absolutely love to say this was a total disaster. This movie deserves every bit of hate it gets. The origin story isn’t the original, Victor and Reed are supposed to be the same age but it seems like Victor is 4-5 years older, and none of the characters’ ages match the story from the comics. The only person that is even close to their comic book age in the movie is Johnny.  I also hate how they go to a different planet and get powers rather than in space, and I can’t say anything else without spoiling it even though I highly recommend watching something else. But if you want to watch it, you better be ready to laugh at it. The movie earned only a 9 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which I think is way too generous.

Featured image: https://www.forbes.com/sites/scottmendelson/2015/08/10/box-office-4-reasons-fantastic-four-flamed-out/

Two Dystopian Novels Imagine What Happens When Fear and Hate Win

By Mrs. McHugh

HHS Librarian/The Hawk advisor

Our Missing Hearts by Celeste Ng can be called a dystopian novel, a genre which imagines a future world destroyed by war, disaster or other catastrophes. But like Internment by Samira Ahmed, the premise is not such a big leap from our current reality. The story imagines our country has gone through a terrible recession and violent unrest, only settled by a law prohibiting anything foreign or unpatriotic. Asian-Americans unfairly bear the blame for the country’s problems, and any criticism of the new rules is quickly squashed: protests are stifled, books are removed from libraries and children are taken from “unfit” parents. Still, a resistance rises, one that uses story and art to amplify voices that are being silenced. It’s not an action-packed book, focusing heavily on the families and friendships torn apart, so it’s not exactly a thriller. But it’s not science fiction or straight realistic either. It’s a bit of a slow build as you follow 12-year-old Bird, his enigmatic mother and those who support the resistance. The author, who is known for family dramas like Little Fires Everywhere and Everything I Never Told You, says she was inspired by our current divisive politics and the anti-Asian sentiment stirred up by COVID. 

Internment was similarly inspired by politics and American history. In the near future, the U.S. government has imprisoned all Muslim-Americans in internment camps, including 17-year-old Layla and her family. Even though they are citizens, they are stripped of their rights and possessions and considered enemies of the state. This echoes what happened to Japanese-Americans during World War II. It also draws on the hate and fear directed at Muslims after the September 11th attacks committed by radicals in the name of their religion. This is a fast-paced, thrilling story of tolerance and reason triumphing over fear and hate. It also highlights the danger when people stay silent in the face of injustice.

There are countless examples of dystopian novels, including The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, The Road by Cormac McCarthy, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood and 1984 by George Orwell. But in each of those books, something catastrophic has happened and our world is barely recognizable. In Our Missing Hearts and Internment, the world is very familiar. The good – and the bad – feel very real. Perhaps that is why these books have such a strong impact.

Making Music, Memories at SEMSBA

By Jake Faghan, ’23

Staff Writer

For athletes, the goal is taking your team to the championship game. For musicians, the equivalent of the “big game” is SEMSBA. The Southeastern Massachusetts School Bandmasters Association involves about 30 towns and 250 student musicians. Students are divided up to form chorus, jazz, orchestral and concert ensembles. It’s a huge moment for the performing arts, as schools come together to create emotion and life, and to form an even stronger community as musicians and singers. 

For SEMSBA 2023 at Middleborough High School March 17-18, Hanover High School sent a strong contingent: seniors Emily Dillon (trumpet), Cassie Lopes (french horn), Owen Forrand (vocals – bass), Andrew Keegan (vocals – bass) and myself (bassoon); juniors Aidan O’Connor (trombone) and Abby Lamb (vocals-alto); and sophomore Brian Tawa (timpani).

To qualify for SEMSBA, students must first audition. In addition to preparing the audition piece they are given, they practice their scales and sight reading (the act of playing a song for the first few times and interpreting it based on what’s on the paper and what one believes it should sound like), as the judges will ask them to play a small piece they have never seen before. HHS music teachers Mr. Harden and Mr. Wade shepherded students through the process. This year, roughly 400 students from across the region tried out, and as is a common theme, it was so amazing to see so many other musicians. The process itself was enjoyable too. It was more of an evaluation instead of harsh grading. There was only one judge so it was easier to think of it as practicing with yourself, and not in front of an audience. When auditions were over, students were slotted into the different musical groups.

The first day of SEMSBA began at 9 am with groups practicing their respective pieces. The school’s gymnasium, auditorium, and practice room were filled with talent. The concert band, which I was a part of, had about 80 students, which was really nice to see and experience. Despite never playing together before, it was remarkable to watch songs quickly fit together and sound complete. Our first song of the selection, Americans We by Henry Filmore, was sight-read only once and it came out perfectly. It was a promising day of practice, and each section worked hard to provide their voice and pull their weight. After lunch, each group swapped locations and began practicing again. Lunch was provided by the host school, and it was a chance to meet new people from other towns. Once we were back at it, practice continued until 4 pm; it was amazing how much we all improved in that time. The first day was a huge success, and we all looked forward to the concert the next day.

The second day started similarly with the early hours used for practicing before the performances. Other pieces the concert band played included October by Eric Whitacre and Parkour by Samuel Hazo (which, from this, has become one of my favorite arrangements ever). The auditorium was packed for each performance, and every song from each group – chorus, jazz, orchestra, and concert band – went exceptionally well. 

Overall, it was a wonderful experience. It gave us the chance to see a broader world of music, and enabled friendships to form. I was able to meet fellow bassoonists, and saw myself improve from the experience. It was my first time playing at SEMSBA, and it is something I will never forget. I believe every young musician should at least try it, because there is a lot to gain from an opportunity like this. To anyone considering auditioning in the future, I would strongly recommend it, as it is a wonderful experience and a great opportunity to grow. I’m lucky to have experienced it, and I’m grateful every day for being able to make music.