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The student news site of Amador Valley High School


The student news site of Amador Valley High School


The student news site of Amador Valley High School


AV Orchestra prepares for CASMEC 2024

Amogh Belgal
Since 2nd Semester began, guest conductors from different schools have hosted clinics for Amador’s orchestra to practice their music.

Every year, the California All-State Music Education Conference(CASMEC) is held to showcase different bands, orchestras, conductors, and even specific musicians making up all-state jazz and concert ensembles. 

Last year, the Amador Valley Wind Ensemble I performed in this event, but this year, the Amador Valley Symphony Orchestras are combining into one big string orchestra for an impressive performance. 

“I feel super honored. I’m also really looking forward to having fun with all the people in the orchestra. Usually we don’t get much time outside of the class to bond. I’m really excited about that bonding aspect of the event, as well as getting to see other groups perform and getting feedback from professionals across the state,” said Sunny Moon (‘25)

Every year, there is an application process, which can start as early as months before the performance. The orchestra had to submit recordings of repertoire that showed their skills and talents as a group. 

“We submitted a recording of the music that we did last year, our Symphony A music. We sent in our recordings, and schools from other areas of the state that also sent in recordings. And so we were chosen out of a pool of applicants,” said Shelley Durbin, AV Orchestra Teacher. 

For the last three weeks, the string orchestra worked on putting together a concert to perform. They included many songs ranging from elementary difficulty all the way to college level difficulty repertoire. 

“It’s been more intense. So after winter break, we had two after- school rehearsals for four4 hours to go over all the many pieces. And also, we’ve been getting a lot of clinicians and people from outside to help us and listen to us and give us feedback,” said Moon. “For example, Mr. Aubel came to teach us. And then I think the music director of Saratoga High School came, too. They visited and conducted us and gave us really great feedback.”

The concert for the string orchestra is scheduled for 10:00 AM on Friday, Feb 2. Judges and the general audience alike will get a chance to listen and provide feedback during the CASMEC performances.

“It’s good practice for us to move on to a national level event. It’s also just good to create exposure for our orchestra program,” said Durbin. “There’s a really large amount of synergy, meaning it’s all about togetherness, like learning and thinking about the music together. Staying in time, absolutely tied together, functioning like we are one organism. And so I very much love the togetherness of what we do.” 

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