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Orange Schools News Article

Music, Photography Come Together for Orange Artists in Chicago


The Orange High School Orchestra, directed by Mrs. Rebecca Ellsworth, and Orange Choir, directed by Mr. Christopher Olsen, had the unique opportunity to perform in Chicago’s famed Field Museum of Natural History on Saturday, March 12, 2016. OHS photography students and their teacher, Ms. Melissa Conrad, joined these musicians as the group demonstrated their artistic skills, while enjoying a culturally rewarding educational experience in touring the Windy City.

The musicians gave special performances in the museum’s impressive Stanley Field Hall, where their music was greeted by a large crowd and beautifully reverberated within the gleaming white marble interior. High notes soared past the balconies to linger in the 80-foot sky lit ceiling. Orchestra students musically acknowledged SUE- the largest, most complete Tyrannosaurus rex fossil yet discovered as they played alongside her massive 42-foot long skeleton and concluded their performance with music from Jurassic Park. Choir students sang a variety of music including Frank Ticheli’s “Earth Song” while they gazed beyond their onlookers to the view of Carl Akeley’s famed preservation “Two Fighting Elephants”. The group gathered a large audience from all parts of the country and speckled amidst the crowd were some familiar faces from home that made the trip to support the students.

Prior to their performances, students relaxed and learned while they enjoyed visiting Shedd Aquarium and Millennium Park. They even partook in a musically comedic jazz-era experience at Tommy Gun’s Garage- a Prohibition themed dinner theater, where their teachers (Olsen & Conrad) were brought on stage as part of the performance! To conclude their trip, the Orange group enjoyed viewing the river being dyed green in time for St. Patrick’s Day from the Skydeck Ledge glass observation area that soars 1,353 feet above the street and dined on Navy Pier. The students closed their adventure with an amazingly entertaining evening at the Blue Man Group performance where the unique entertainer’s rhythms were spot on, the science and music were intertwined and social commentary was blended with satire and brilliant comedic performance.

“I am very proud as our students demonstrated great teamwork and represented Orange so well through their performances on this trip. It was a pleasure to travel with such a great group of kids, faculty and parent chaperones,” said Ellsworth.

The spring OHS Choir Concert will be held on April 14, 2016 and the OHS Orchestra Concert will be held on April 21, 2016. Both concerts will begin at 7 p.m. in the school auditorium. Photography from the Chicago trip will be on display at the concerts.

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