The New Jersey School Boards Association will proudly highlight a variety of student entertainment during its Virtual Workshop next month, providing district officials with memorable performances during the three-day annual professional training conference.
In the spring, NJSBA issued a call for student performances and received 90 entries from public schools throughout the state. The winning submissions, selected by an Association panel, will demonstrate their talents and skills on a statewide digital platform during Workshop, to be held Tuesday, Oct. 26 to Thursday, Oct. 28.
Here’s the schedule:
Tuesday, Oct. 26
9 a.m. Arts High School, Newark Public Schools, Essex County
“Jammin’ in the Barrio” features guitar majors from Newark’s Arts High School, the nation’s first school of visual and performing arts. These students have performed in all-state and all-national festivals throughout their high school tenure.
The presentation also features students from Tremolo Music Studio in Clifton, performing alongside students from various public schools from across Toronto, Canada in celebration of “International Day of Education” on Jan. 24, 2020. They used YOUSICIAN software to produce the video. The guitarists were led by Jayson Martinez, music teacher.
Workshop Wind Down Evening Event
7 p.m. Neptune High School, Monmouth County
Scarlet Sound A Cappella, a high school vocal ensemble, recorded Beyonce’s “Freedom” for the semi-final round of the International Competition of High School A Cappella. COVID protocols were adhered to in the audio and video recording.
Since its inception in 2016 at Neptune High School, Scarlet Sound has been nominated to four New Jersey State Teen Arts Festivals, has placed first overall in numerous out-of-state festivals, and has twice placed as a semifinalist in the International Competition of High School A Cappella. Scarlet Sound is already hard at work in preparation for the 2022 festival and competition season. The group is led by J.T. Fryer, choral director.
Wednesday, Oct. 27
9 a.m. Bridgewater-Raritan Regional High School, Somerset County
“God, I Hate Shakespeare” is a production from the Bridgewater-Raritan Regional High School theatre program, which began its 2020-2021 school year completely virtual. The piece served as the opening number from the group’s virtual production, “Shakespeare Unmasked.” Using virtual learning as a device to reinterpret the song from the musical “Something Rotten,” the piece is intended to celebrate the work of William Shakespeare and how his influence has spanned across all genres of art. The production was led by Teresa Wallace-Gunning, director.
Workshop Wind Down Evening Event
7 p.m. Bridgewater-Raritan Regional High School, Somerset County
The Brandenburg Concerto Movement 3 by J. S. Bach will be performed by the Bridgewater-Raritan High School Symphony Orchestra, which consists of students in grades 10 through 12. Students started their school orchestra journey in fifth grade and are taught the appropriate techniques, knowledge, commitment and passion to become members of the high school audition-based ensemble. They rehearsed for one hour every other day during the hybrid learning model and now rehearse daily for 40 minutes in-person. The orchestra is led by Hsiao-yu Lin Griggs, music director; Evan Young, music editor and producer; and Dr. Laura Craig, supervisor of fine and performing arts.
The performance will be held during the Workshop Wind Down Evening Event.
Thursday, Oct. 28
9 a.m. Community Middle School, West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District, (Mercer and Middlesex counties)
Lyric Metal will be presented by the Community Middle School 8th Grade Orchestra from the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District.
The piece was written to celebrate the life of Benjamin Michael Albro, a high school student, who passed away after a tragic accident. Albro played cello in the school orchestra and he loved heavy metal.
Since the students were not able to play together in person, each person recorded themselves individually at home. Organizers used technology to blend the ensemble. Through hard work and perseverance, this group of amazing eighth graders kept playing music. The group was led by Hanfang Zhang, music teacher.
Workshop Wind Down Evening Event
7 p.m. Arts High School, Newark Public Schools, Essex County
Arts High String Showcase is a tribute to the composer Soon Hee Newbold, whose music inspired students through the pandemic with her beautiful melodies and exciting rhythms. The students provided written program notes and met virtually to practice leading up to the final project of recording, including editing discussions for creating smooth transitions between songs.
They also wore headphones and recorded themselves to a click track of instrumental music. The orchestra director is Christine Sweet.
Additional Performances During Workshop Wind Down Evening Events
7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 27 and Thursday, Oct. 28
Henry C. Beck Middle School, Cherry Hill Public Schools, Camden County
Quincy Jones, one of America’s most prolific composers, composed the Soul Bossa Nova, which premiered in 1964 on the album “Big Band Bossa Nova.” It was introduced to a whole new generation many years later, after it was featured in the first Austin Powers movie. The version that the school submitted has been updated and rearranged for the middle school’s musical group called the Band Homeroom.
During non-pandemic times, the dedicated students would meet every day. However, they adapted to working independently and remotely spending many extra hours learning this song so that their band could be featured in a virtual concert. The band director is Steve Marr.
Ocean City High School, Ocean City School District, Cape May County
This graceful dance to Forte A Capella’s “Waiting on the World to Change” was created before the pandemic began, but was not able to be performed in person until April 2021.
This dancers in this piece are wearing white T-shirts with symbols and logs of groups, causes and associations that each of them believe in and want to see change in to improve our world.
They are the future and their message is: “We’ll Change the World” is true! Alyssa Morrison, dance team coach and health teacher, led the group.
Register for NJSBA’s Workshop 2021 Workshop is New Jersey’s largest professional development training conference for school officials.
The well-established annual event continues to present compelling keynote speakers, a wide range of quality professional training sessions, special events, networking opportunities and an interactive exhibit hall with vendors catering specifically to school districts.
Sessions will cover digital and distance learning, equity, cybersecurity, cost-savings, school finance, shared services, leadership best practices, school technology, social and emotional learning, sustainability, integrative STEAM (science, technology, engineering, the arts, and math) and more.
Registration Details NJSBA is offering a special group rate of $900 for up to 25 team members, including school board members, superintendents, school business administrators, IT directors, facilities directors, principals, and other district staff. The individual member rate is $450 per person.
New Registration Process for 2021 The group registration process for Workshop 2021 has changed. Please review the group rate registration instructions before starting if you are registering two or more team members. Select “individual” registration ONLY if you are registering one person. Registration is available online and must be handled by a district business administrator.
To learn more, visit Workshop 2021.