NEWCOMB - On March 20 and 21, students from area schools gathered at Newcomb Central School to share something they all have in common: music.
The Central Adirondack School Music Association annual concert, or CASMA festival, was hosted by Newcomb Central School this year and operated differently than it has in years past.
The CASMA festival is a voluntary offering for band and chorus students. The participating vocal and band students practice and perform musical selections alongside students from other schools.
In the past, the CASMA festival was a one-day event, with participating students from grades 7 through 12, but this year the format was changed. CASMA was opened up to younger students and divided. The Junior CASMA concert was held in the Fall, while the Senior CASMA concert, for students in grades 9 through 12, was held in March. Also, the event was was extended into a two-day event.
Schools participating this year were from Johnsburg, Warrensburg, Newcomb, North Warren, Long Lake, Indian Lake, and Minerva.
Many of the students enrolled in the CASMA event participated in both band and choral concerts.
In order to accommodate this change, events were scheduled so that the students did not have overlapping rehearsal times. This gave the students who only participated in either band or chorus a chance to relax and get to know students from other schools. It was a great chance to assimilate and just have fun.
To kick off the second cay of the CASMA festival, participants experienced the considerable musical abilities of Joe Sallins, whose workshop set a great tone for the day. Joe Sallins is a musician and choreographer who is very versatile and plays many different instruments. Sallins is known for his hands-on drum workshops.
Both days of the CASMA event included rehearsals for the concluding concert that was held Saturday afternoon. The students practiced hard and it showed in the performance.
In the concert, many of the different parts of both band and chorus were showcased. Members of the band were given the option to either play a piece with others in their instrumental section or be a part of jazz band, along with being in the main band. Showcasing the different sections of the band added color to the concert and gave the audience more insight regarding the sounds of various instruments.
The choral students were divided into men's and women's choruses as well. The concert ended with a rousing conclusion when all of the participating students stood on the risers to sing together, demonstrating the fun they had had that weekend. They were a talented group of students.
CASMA is a great way for students who love music to come together to meet people from other schools who share this interest.