On the Middle School Day of Music, Cincinnati Country Day School fifth- through eighth-grade students displayed their musical skills for their peers, parents, and the school community.
The Day of Music is a tradition in which all Middle School students participate year after year, although the event was canceled for the last two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. By the looks on the students’ and audience members’ faces, everyone was grateful to have this tradition return.
"These performances build the students’ resilience and comfort levels in performing in higher stress situations like on stage in front of a live crowd,” said Stephanie Wietmarschen, K-12 fine arts chair and band director. “We are strengthening their performance skills and etiquette, both of which are crucial for a formal concert.”
This year, approximately 113 students participate in the middle school band and 72 in the choir. All fifth and sixth graders are enrolled in a music class and have two performances every year, while seventh and eighth graders get to choose between band, choir, and tech theater.
For the Day of Music, some students opted to showcase their skills behind the scenes, moving set pieces, assisting with sound balance and management, and helping with lighting changes throughout the performances.
"Hosting any concert is all about the experience and growing our skills as musicians and technicians,” explained Wietmarschen. “If we make a mistake during a live performance, what can we do now to keep the ensemble together? Listening and working as a team to produce a piece of art is what we strive to accomplish for every person involved in any performance.”
Each grade level concert included an array of presentations, including solo piano performances, band performances, and choir performances.
"I always encourage parents and families to cheer the students on, mistakes and triumphs alike,” said Wietmarschen. “Live theater is challenging to navigate, especially for a middle schooler who might be nervous, but they get stronger, wiser, and more resilient with every performance."