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July 4, 2017 > Hopkins musicians wrap up a successful year

Hopkins musicians wrap up a successful year

Submitted By Queenie Chong

Instrumental music students at Hopkins Junior High School in Fremont are recounting another successful year with a strong presence at honor groups and historic high ratings for ensembles at music festivals.

Four of the six groups that participated at the CMEA (California Music Educators Association) Festival in the spring received the highest possible rating of Unanimous Superior, with HopkinsÕ Jazz Ensemble being one of only two middle school jazz groups in the Bay Area to have received such a coveted rating at a CMEA Festival this year.

At the Music in the Parks Festival the Concert Band and Intermediate Orchestra earned Superior ratings. The Intermediate Orchestra also earned a First-Place award in its category and in the Overall Orchestra category. Meanwhile the Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, Advanced Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble, were each awarded both Superior rating and First Place in its own category. Congratulations to all the Hopkins musicians for their accomplishments this year.

In May, the two flagships of Hopkins -- Advanced Orchestra and Wind Ensemble -- were offered the opportunity to perform at the CMEA All-State Band and Orchestra Festival, held at the Mondavi Center at UC Davis. Only groups having received Unanimous Superior ratings at their local CMEA-sanctioned festivals, and successfully completed an audition were eligible to join.

Since the All-State Festival was established five years ago, the Advanced Orchestra and Wind Ensemble of Hopkins were two of only a few groups in California to have been invited to participate. Over the years they consistently earned the Unanimous Superior ratings each time they participated at this statewide festival.

Another of this yearÕs highlights originated from the 70 Advanced Orchestra students who had worked tirelessly for months toward delivering a spectacular performance at the California All-State Music Education Conference, held in San Jose in mid-February. Hopkins Advanced Orchestra was the only string orchestra featured at that prestigious event this year, and one of only two middle schools qualified to perform for the discerning audience of 200 music educators from across California.

More recently Hopkins Wind Ensemble enjoyed the privilege of working with esteemed music educator/composer Dr. Andrew Boysen, Jr. (University of New Hampshire) in performing two of his works, ÒSong of Loudest PraiseÓ and ÒWyvern FireÓ both conducted by the composer. It was an eye-opening experience for the student-musicians as well as for Dr. Boysen: It is unusual for a middle school instrumental ensemble to be able to so versatilely rotate playing a different part in different pieces, and all along they have been interpreting challenging music composed for high school musicians.

The music directors of Hopkins would like to acknowledge the hardworking students and their families which generously give their time, talents and other resources to help foster a quality music program.

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