Valley Voices Prep for Holiday Cheer

The LAVC Wind Ensemble performs seasonal music at the Main Stage Theater.

By Jhanelle Rivera, Editor in Chief

Bells were ringing on Monday at the Main Stage Theater as the LAVC Wind Ensemble guided their audience into a winter won- derland through harmonious ren- ditions of holiday classics.

Within 50 minutes, more than 30 musicians performed a medley of eight holiday segments. The orchestra appeared to be a wide variety of artist, which consisted of members from the Los Angeles community and Valley College students. Diversity spread wide across from ages and ethnic- ity to reciting Hanukkah and Christmas songs.

“ I think its one way of show- ing music is for everybody, it is the universal language and we all speak it,” said LAVC Wind Ensemble director, Dean Immel.

The audience’s involvement helped to spread the holiday spir- it. Applauses from the audience gradually grew in-between tran- sition of songs and listeners sang along to their favorite melodies and were clapping along to the beat.

“Home For Christmas”, an arrangement played to liven up the mood inside the theatre through the combination of four original Christmas pieces, “Home for the Holidays”, “Winter Wonderland”, “Over the River”, and “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”. According to seven years’ f lautist and Monarch, Erika Perdomo, it took more than a month of rehearsal. Perdomo states she adores play- ing Christmas music and finds it smoothing.

“It’s very relaxing kind of take the stress away and begin to feel all happy things,” said unde- cided major Perdomo.

The performance alter- nated between Christmas and Hanukkah music. Israeli classi- cal melody, “Bashana Haba‘ah”, was a dedication for the Six Day

War. Before the musicians per- formed “The Eighth Candle”, the performers gave a contribute to Hanukkah as Jessica Yarkin, who is in the Rabbinic stud- ies program at American Jewish University and a Rabbinic intern at Adat Ari El synagogue, lit six candles on the menorah that was onstage and recited two tradi- tional prayers.

“The whole point of celebrat- ing Hanukkah is that it is a communal religion so that as many people as possible can get together and sing and light the candles together,” Yarkin said. “So it’s really nice to do it in a big room full of tons of people, and you heard half the audience jump in because they knew the blessings, and that really warmed my heart.”

For the finale, the orchestra played the original rock and roll version of “Bashana Haba‘ah”.

The audience interaction did not end there. Director Immel asked for the audience’s opinion on which version was more appeal- ing. The crowd all agreed on the rock and roll version.

This is the last performance of fall semester. The next Wind Ensemble performance is sched- uled for Monday, March 24, 2014 at 8:00 p.m. at the Main Stage Theater.

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