WHS band picks up their instruments for the last time this year

WHS band picks up their instruments for the last time this year

On Tuesday, May 9, the Wadsworth High School band put on their spring concert. The concert featured performances from the concert band, symphonic band, wind ensemble, and even a singing performance from Kara Moore, a senior at Wadsworth High School. 

This concert was more bitter sweet for band director Dana Hire than most. Her son is graduating this year and the leaving senior class, she said, is a special one. 

“I feel like it’s gone by way too quickly,” said Ethan Hire, Dana Hire’s graduating son. “I will be missing it in the future.”

Dana Hire taught some of the class of 2023 when they were first graders, so she and the class have a lot of history. In addition to teaching them in first grade, she has gotten to know some of them because of her son and his friendships. 

“I have honestly watched some of these kids grow up,” Dana Hire said. 

Although the concert may have been more emotional than usual, it was still a success for Hire and the band. They were able to incorporate unique, non-traditional elements into their show.

“I think it adds so much more to the concert,” Dana Hire said about the inclusion of mixed media into the performance. 

One section of the show incorporated a slideshow of various pictures and videos of scenes in nature. This slideshow was created to line up with the music being played by the band. Hire said that this was the most difficult part of the show, and was the hardest for the band as a whole to prepare for. 

“All day Tuesday I was in the PAC [Performing Arts Center] making sure the mics were working getting the lighting right trying to time things up,” said Dana Hire. 

In addition to the technical difficulties Dana Hire had to work through, the challenge of lining up the band’s music to the slideshow was another thing she had to figure out. Neither she nor the band had any way to change their speed while playing to make sure they were on timing. 

“I had no gauge,” Dana Hire said. “I was flying blind.”

Another stand-out aspect of the concert was the “Goodnight Moon” performance. The piece was based off of the children’s book by Margaret Wise Brown. This included playing from the wind ensemble while Kara Moore sang the book word for word. 

Before the song was performed, Dana Hire made a short speech to the audience about how significant the music was to her. She said when she first heard the song played and sung by a different band, she knew she was going to have to make her band perform it someday. 

“Very rarely do I sit in an audience, and it evokes such an emotional response like that piece did,” Dana Hire said. 

She also gave a lot of credit to Moore, and said that the vocal demands of the piece were no joke. Another challenge Moore faced was keeping her vocals on the same time the band was playing. 

“It’s not an easy piece. She was out there flying by herself,” Dana Hire said about Moore’s performance. 

The Tuesday evening performance was a successful way to end the year for the Wadsworth band. Dana Hire and all of the band look forward to next year and the performances it will bring.