Music in Our Schools: Part 9


akron March is the 30th anniversary of “Music in Our Schools Month” by the National Association for Music Education and Akron Schools (New York) will celebrate with several music events scheduled for March that showcase local talent.


Selected from solo competitions held in January, the “best of the best” are selected throughout the county to participate in All-County ensembles at the Elementary, Junior High, and Senior High level. The Elementary All-County festival will be held at Kleinhans Music Hall this weekend, March 7 and 8, 2015. Emma Hayes, Isabella Leiker, Skyler Rice, Jacob Koziej, Jessica Gurney, Samantha Kern and Ava Martina will represent Akron Schools in the chorus and orchestra. Trevor Cleversley will be playing in the All-County Jazz Festival also being held this weekend. Shannon Roberts, Micah Suckow, Riley Polkowski, Abby Nunn and Emma Sage will be performing in the Junior High All-County Festival concerts in the band or orchestra and Kaitlyn Stachowiak, Casey Bower, Carly Staebell and Maggie Kowalik will perform with the High School All-County Festival band or orchestra during the next couple weekends as well.

Locally, the Akron Middle and High School Orchestras will present “Music & Munchies VI” at 7:00PM on March 11, 2015. The annual event is held in the High School cafeteria where the audience will be treated to hors d’oeuvres and desserts compliments of the musicians. Beverages will be available for purchase. Admission is free.

The annual Cabaret Concerts held in the performance gymnasium are scheduled for Saturday March 21, 2015. Featuring the bands, jazz bands and choruses, the Middle School “Pops” Concert will be at 4:00PM and the High School “Land of the Free, Because of the Brave” themed concert begins at 7:00PM. Tickets for this event are available for just $4.00 from any musician or get them for just $5.00 at the door. The Akron Music Parents will also hold their annual spectacular Chinese Auction during both performances with the drawing held at the end of the evening concert.

Shrek the Musical will be performed for the first time on the Edward Allen Auditorium stage on March 27 and March 28 at 7:30PM. A special Saturday Matinee of the show is also scheduled at 1:00PM on March 28, 2014. Tickets for the production are available at both “Music & Munchies VI” or either Cabaret Concert.

Community members are encouraged to come to any and all of these performances to help celebrate “Music in Our Schools Month”.

Additionally, the Music Department is proud to share some of the many accomplishments of the music students and the department including junior Kaitlyn Stachowiak’s selection to play bassoon in the Conference All-State Orchestra. Stachowiak, along with percussionist Cierra Janis, also play for the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra.

Viola player Shannon Roberts and bassist Zach Cleversley are members of the Greater Buffalo Youth String Orchestra.

Akron also has eight string student musicians that will participate in a side-by-side concert with professional musicians from the Genesee Symphony Orchestra on April 12th.

Nearly 100 students auditioned at solo festivals this year, too. Since 2001, the Music Department has enjoyed increases in its enrollment. For example, in 2001, there were just three string students and 35 band students at the elementary level. This year, there are 84 band students and 28 string students.

Akron Schools boasts five bands, three orchestras, four choirs and two jazz ensembles – each group performs at numerous concerts or parades each year.

For the past four years, Akron Schools has hosted the New York State School Music Association’s Junior High Area All-State Music Festival held in November.

Music teachers Mr. Mark Flynn and Mrs. Debra Komosinski have both been awarded the prestigious Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and Erie County Music Educators’ Association “Award for Excellence in Music Education.” The District has also been designated by the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) as one of the “Best Communities for Music Education” two years running.


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