Tri-M’s Annual Scholarship Concert


Photo taken by Marvin Lee

Karen Li and Emily Winston

The Three Village Tri-M Music Honor Society presented its annual Scholarship Concert on Friday, February 27th, in Ward Melville’s auditorium. The funds raised will ultimately be awarded to a senior looking to pursue music after high school.

Act I of the concert began with a flute choir featuring Mrs. Gustavsen on the contrabass flute, a rare band instrument that stands taller than five feet and is played vertically. Next to perform was junior Alexandra Bassin, who gave a captivating and heartfelt performance of Miss Saigon’s “I’d Give My Life for You,” accompanied by junior Dana Smith on the piano. Sophomore Allison Dana played the first movement of Mozart’s oboe concerto, followed by senior Haebin Chang and junior Andrew Mata who played movement III of Bach’s Violin Concerto for Two. Senior Nick Greene brought a contemporary classical tune to the stage with Ligeti’s Sonata for Solo Cello. Act I concluded with an original song sung by sophomore Michal Zadok, who played the piano as well.

With Act II came a slightly different feel to the concert. The second act featured more contemporary and upbeat performances, starting off with Ward Melville’s Saxophone Choir as they played “When I’m Sixty-Four” by the Beatles. Senior Jack Tanzi was next to showcase his love for music as he sang “Run Away With Me” from “The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown”. Brothers Bill Carson (senior) on cello, along with his little brother Nick (sophomore) on guitar played Vance Joy’s popular song “Riptide.” Finally, the scholarship concert came to a close with performances by two bands, Milk and Town of Cats. Milk performed “Are You Gonna Be My Girl” by Jet, followed by Town of Cats’s performance of their original song, “What Are We”. The finale of the concert featured a combined performance featuring both Milk and Town of Cats, plus several brass instrument players. The entire audience clapped along to the two bands’ cover of Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars’s hit single “Uptown Funk”. Refreshments were served in the cafeteria after the concert as performers, Tri-M members, and audience members mingled together.

At one point during the night, the humorous MC and senior Jake Vincel, a violinist himself, sat down cross-legged on the floor of the auditorium stage as he carefully explained why Tri-M hosts this concert every year. He elucidated the sky-high cost of music conservatory or college education, and thus what a gracious contribution this scholarship will serve the lucky recipient from Ward Melville’s Class of 2015. Vincel cleverly introduced the performers of the concert and incorporated musings about composers, vocals, and his personal interactions with the performers.

Town of Cats’s keyboard player, senior Gabriel Downs, reflected on what it was like putting the finale together. “Getting to collaborate with the guys from Milk and all of the brass players…there’s nothing better than putting on a good performance with so many people working together, where everyone really is bringing something to the group,” he says.

Junior Tri-M member Thomas Li, who designed the program for the evening, thought: “The evening was definitely a success, and I’m glad that we were able to put on such a great event for an equally great cause. With college tuition and other expenses on the horizon, I’m glad that we’ll be able to help out someone who is chasing his/her passion for music beyond high school. And what better way was there to do that than a concert featuring people who share that passion?” Audience member Jamie Sung (junior), shared that “the performances were very good and much better than what I was expecting. Plus, Jake was a really funny host!”

This year’s scholarship concert was even better than the last. “I thought the scholarship concert had a great turnout this year,” says junior Maho Koga and Tri-M member. “I’m glad that a lot of people were able to come because it’s for such a great cause. The performers were all so talented, and I think everyone especially enjoyed the finale because everyone was singing ‘Uptown Funk’ as they were walking out!” A performer in the concert with Ward Melville Saxophone Choir and also a Tri-M member, junior Hanna Bliska said: “This was my first time performing at the scholarship concert, and I can truly say that it was one of my favorite performances that I’ve done at Ward Melville. Tri-M truly makes the night amazing – from stellar decorations to punch and cannolis after, I had a great time on and off stage! Congratulations to everyone involved. It was amazing!”