Musicians perform in instrumental concert


Jacob Frank ’17 plays the saxophone with the Upper School Symphony during its Nov. 18 performance. The symphony performed compositions by Bela Bartok, Antonin Dvorak and other composers in their Fall Instrumental Music Concert. Credit: Pavan Tauh/Chronicle

Kitty Luo

Musicians from the Upper School Symphony, Wind Ensemble, Camerata Strings and String Quartet performed in the Fall Instrumental Music Concert in the Rugby Theater Nov. 18.

Students performed piecessuch as Bela Bartok’s “Romanian Folk Dances,” Antonin Dvorak’s “String Quartet in F” and other compositions.

Performing Arts Teacher Shawn Costantino conducted the Wind Ensemble, and Mark Hilt directed the Upper School Symphony and Camerata Strings.

In addition to rehearsing daily, the ensembles held after-school rehearsals in the days leading up to the concert.

“It was exciting because it felt like a culmination of months of work, so it was satisfying,” Chronicle Illustrator Anna Gong ’18 said.

For tuba player James Xu ’17, the concert was bittersweet as it was one of his last instrumental performances before he graduates, he said.

“I actually felt kinda sad at first because I knew that it was going to be one of the last concerts I would play at Harvard-Westlake since I’m a senior,” Xu said.

The String Quartet featured Gong and Christine Park ’18 on violin, Margaret Renton ’17 on viola and Samantha Yoon ’18 on cello.

“It was a really special experience because you’re in a collaboration with other people, so it’s very intimate compared to symphony,” Gong said.

Gong said that one of the most satisfying aspects of the performance was seeing the final product of all her hard work.

“Putting so much time and effort into this quartet was all worth it because in the end, getting to see the finished product was really fulfilling,” Gong said.

Hilt initially assembled the quartet in May 2016, and the ensemble has continued to perform at various events since.

“It was pretty casual,” Gong said. “Mr. Hilt put us together for the Spring Chamber Music Concert last year, and then we played a couple times over the summer for community service. So we’ve just stuck together since then.”

After the instrumental performance ended, students and their families gathered for food and beverages at a reception on the quad.

“I love the variety of music we get to play and the passion Mr. Hilt has for teaching and conducting us,” Xu said.