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Band Teacher Conducts Her Last Spring Concert

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The school’s freshmen, concert, and symphonic bands united on Wednesday, March 15 and orchestrated various iconic pieces for a content audience. The bands, conducted and introduced by band teacher Arlene Berney and choir teacher Sean Millard, filled the NMU with songs ranging from the solemnity and earnestness of “Orange Was Her Color,” performed by symphonic band, to the carefree nature of “Main Street Celebration,” performed by freshmen band, to the somber and dour tones of “The Last to Defend,” performed by concert band.

By 7p.m., the audience filled up with parents, siblings, and relatives with electronic devices in hand for video recordings of their student.

Junior Martin Contreras, second chair tenor on the saxophone, describes the sentimental undertones behind one piece symphonic band performed.

“One of them is a piece entitled ‘Orange Was Her Color.’ The song is very impactful; it was written in memory of a young teenager who was tragically killed in a car accident. It expresses all the emotions that you would feel after someone’s death. It’s probably my favorite.[My favorite thing about performances is] the thrill you get of performing and then seeing people’s emotions throughout the performance, [seeing] their faces lighting up with happiness,” said Contreras.

Furthermore, junior Zoe Richer, section leader of the French horn in concert band, shares insight into her emotions before concert band’s performances.

“My favorite part about concerts is getting to show the other bands what we have been working on. We don’t get to know what the other bands are playing so I was excited to hear what they had been working on,” said Richer.

In addition, Richer stated their gratitude towards band teacher Arlene Burney, who is retiring this year.

“Ms. Burney is such an asset to the band program. I’m really glad that she’s been my teacher for this long. It’s going to be really sad that she’s not going to be here; she has just done so much for the band program,” said Richer.

Paige Hulsman, section leader of the bass clarinet for freshmen band, also shared her appreciation towards Burney’s teachings and impact.

“I am really sad that Ms. Burney will not be our conductor next year. She has completely changed my band experience for the better. She is an amazing teacher and always guides me in the right direction,” said Hulsman.

The next performance for all bands is the Eastside Band Festival on April 20 at 7p.m. in the gym, followed by the marching band’s Butter and Eggs Day Parade performance on April 29 in downtown Petaluma at 11a.m.

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Band Teacher Conducts Her Last Spring Concert