City’s young singers to perform tonight

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 28, 2005

Most school music performances give their parents and friends a look at the best the individual school has to offer. Tonight at King’s Fork High, however, there’s a bit more to it.

There won’t just be one elementary school performing. There’s not going to be only two. Nope, the top fourth- and fifth-grade musicians from 10 local schools will be showing their skills in the Students Talents Are Rising in Suffolk (STARS) concert, which will start at 7 p.m. Students will drum, percussion, record, sing and dance around the stage.

&uot;This is the first time that every school has had the same curriculum,&uot; said Nansemond Parkway instructor Kathy Owens, who along with her colleagues from Southwestern, Mount Zion, Mack Benn, North Shores, Driver, Booker T. Washington, Oakland, Robertson and Kilby Shores, has brought along some performers, roughly 180 in all.

Email newsletter signup

&uot;We’re all teaching the same thing. This is to send them to middle school after working together for the first time.&uot;

American and Russian dancing will be performed, including a rendition of the Isaac Payton Sweat tune, &uot;Cotton Eye Joe.&uot; That’s Callie Jones’ favorite part.

&uot;It’s fun, dancing all the time,&uot; said the Zion fifth-grader, leaping up to demonstrate a bit of hopping and tapping. &uot;You get to do all the steps and go around in circles. You always get to move around.&uot;

A recorder piece of Beethoven’s &uot;Ode to Joy,&uot; is on the program, as are instrumental and choral versions of &uot;Mango Walk,&uot; &uot;Zum Gali Gali,&uot; and other songs. Ryan Sporer is in the unenviable position of banging out some xylophone notes.

&uot;It’s hard, because you have to look at the conductor while you’re playing the notes,&uot; said the Driver student. &uot;I look at my hands fast, and then at the conductor again.&uot;

Playing the flute-like recorder is a bit simpler, said Parkway student Elice Genier.

&uot;It’s fun and really easy,&uot; she said. &uot;There’s words that you remember to make notes to.&uot;

Chorus students like Lindsay Mainhart have to make notes with their own words.

&uot;We all just sound so cool,&uot; she said. &uot;Singing’s fun and exciting, but it’ll be kind of scary because of all the people.&uot;