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The Student News Site of Hickman High School

Purple and Gold News

The Student News Site of Hickman High School

Purple and Gold News

Holiday combined concert brings Hickman together

On December 14, 2023, the top band, choir, orchestra, and Jazz Ensemble performed their annual combined holiday concert.


The combined concert has long been a part of Hickman Performing Arts. Especially the song “Sleigh Ride,” which is performed by all ensembles together. 


The concert is made up of four ensembles, the top orchestra, band, and choir, as well as the Jazz Ensemble. It is the one concert of the year where all four of them perform together.


Some students participating in the performance talked about their thoughts on it.


Violin player Meredith Stone (11) said, “I’m in the seconds and we just kind of play along and have fun.”


The combined concert brings a lot of different people together. Samuel Jones (11) is a percussionist, but he plays with the choir.

Noah Elletson


Samuel described the pieces he plays with the choir, “they’re just random and we get to play a lot of cool stuff that we’ve never really played before. So it’s cool.”


Hickman’s new choir director Tim Hercules has been working at Hickman since the beginning of the year. He talked about his transition to Hickman from Battle.


”I’ve known the band directors for quite some time. So it’s actually been really comfortable moving over here from Battle. And it’s actually been really great to work with such people that are amazing and skilled already,” Hercules stated.


Hercules has been a choir director for 14 years. He expressed what he thought the combined concert could do for choir.


“It’s going to be an amazing opportunity for people to hear what vocal arts is happening at Hickman High School, the new changes, I guess, of having a new director and having a fresh perspective of the new director and then seeing what we can do in the future to change,” Hercules stated.


The combined concert has been a part of the Hickman Performing Arts for many years. 


The orchestra teacher Renan Leme stated, “We’re going to also be playing the combined piece, that’s Sleigh Ride, and it’s a long-time tradition here.” 


The director with the most seniority, co-band director and Jazz Ensemble director, Dennis Swope stated that they have been playing the song “Sleigh Ride” for the concert for “As long as we’ve been doing it.”


The combined concert consists of the four ensembles playing their pieces individually and then playing the song “Sleigh Ride” together, but their collaboration doesn’t stop there.


Co-band director Tom Sweeney stated, “In terms of putting the [program] together… sometimes it’s a collaborative thing.” 


The concert is popular amongst both the directors and students.


“It’s just a nice concert because of the variety,” Sweeney stated.


Leme expressed a similar thought about the variety in the concert.


“You get to listen to just the strings and get to listen to just the band and there are multiple types of bands as well,” Leme stated.


Cellist Lucas Vessel (12) showed confidence in the concert’s quality stating, “We’re gonna have some good music there.”


Students are not limited to one ensemble. Performers such as Elizabeth Dorman (12) is a part of both the band and choir.


“Hickman is really accepting about being involved in different musical activities,” Elizabeth stated.


However, there are of course complications that arise when someone is in multiple ensembles. 


“It’s a lot of jumping back and forth,” Elizabeth stated.


The directors need to make decisions with each other when they are putting the concert together.


“When we do a combined piece, we kind of determine where they’re [students in multiple ensembles] needed the most,” Swope stated.


Despite some of the complications, students seem to like the concert. 


Elizabeth said, “It’s my favorite concert of the year. It’s really fun, that we have all groups coming together.”

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  • L

    Lilly MartinFeb 29, 2024 at 12:27 pm

    Coming from what I consider to be an informed voice, I agree with many of the touchpoints in this article. The combined concert is always a big deal within the performing arts portion of our school, and to know that we can all come together and share that love of music, is a great angle for your story. Bravo, Noah.

  • H

    Henry LammersFeb 29, 2024 at 12:25 pm

    I noticed Noah taking these pictures. This article brings back nice memories of performing in the choir!

  • F

    Finley IstwanFeb 28, 2024 at 9:59 am

    I think this article is so inspiring that everyone can come together to perform a piece! It also makes it more tempting to come watch! This was a great uplifting, and informational piece!