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Christmas music is already filling the air at Mooseheart, where the band is feverishly preparing for its annual Christmas concert. The free to the public event takes place at the Women of the Moose gym at the Mooseheart school building on Wednesday, Dec. 14 at 2:30 p.m.
“The question the members of the band are always asking me is ‘when’s our next performance?’” Mooseheart Band Director Steve Schmidt said. “It brings meaning to everything we’ve been doing in the classroom to get up in front of an audience and perform.”
In addition to the traditional medley of Christmas carols, there will be a number of other pieces played by the band. Schmidt said there will also be soloists such as senior Tarry Johnson, who will play “The Christmas Song” on the clarinet.
“When we perform, we’re giving back to the community,” Schmidt said. “That’s extremely special at Mooseheart, because the band will be performing to hundreds of Moose members, family teachers and staff members who are their biggest supporters.”
Schmidt’s band comprises students from sixth grade through seniors in high school. He also takes students of widely-varying experience and ability levels and blends them together into the Mooseheart band. This year, there are approximately 60 band members.
“As soon as a student can play at even the most basic levels, they’re included in the larger band,” Schmidt said. “Nobody’s left out. We have those experienced musicians, but we also have those with one or two years, or less, of experience. This is great, because it makes leaders of the older students and allows the younger ones to learn from the older ones.”
The Dec. 14 concert is the second to take place in the new gym facility at Mooseheart rather than at the campus’ House of God. Schmidt and the band had an opportunity to play on-stage in the gym at the spring concert in May.
“This gym has better acoustics and we’re on a stage and it looks more like a concert venue. It’s exciting for the kids, who feel they’re on-stage performing, which is how they should feel,” Schmidt said.
For more information, call 630-906-3601 or visit www.mooseheart.org.
Mooseheart is located between North Aurora and Batavia, two miles north of I-88 on Illinois Route 31.