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Music Empowers through Blair’s Spring Concert
Ashley Taube

The power of music is stronger than meets the eye…or ear! Research from Johns Hopkins Medicine reveals the profound impact of music on our well-being. Both listening to and playing music has the ability to not only reduce anxiety, blood pressure and pain but also promote better sleep and improved mood, alertness and memory. With a focus on mental health and well-being, the Blair community has multiple avenues to access cocurricular music—including the end-of-year Spring Concert. Everyone is welcome to enjoy the benefits of an enchanting night of music, featuring performances by Blair’s instrumental and vocal ensembles, at the Spring Concert on Friday, April 26 at 8 p.m. in the Armstrong-Hipkins Center for the Arts, DuBois Theatre.

Vocal Performances

Vocalist Cheyenne Joachim ’25 hopes that the audience will bask in the beauty of the Blair Academy Singers’ sound. “I hope the audience can fully sit in our sound and listen to the message of our songs and feel as though it had a positive effect on them,” Cheyenne Joachim ’25 said. “As a choir, we have evolved so much from the beginning of the year, and, as this is our last concert, I hope the audience can fully appreciate that.”

During the concert, the Singers, Blairitones, Sopralti and Chamber Choir will perform a repertoire exclusively composed by women and about women, according to Vocal Music Director Ryan Manni. As a testament to the theme, the vocal concert is aptly titled “Warrior” as an homage to the Sopralti’s final piece by the same name. 

“Singing music by women about women adds an extra layer of empowerment to the lyrics and meaning of the songs,” Cheyenne explained. “When you sit and truly think about the words in ‘Warrior,’ it’s women talking about women’s struggles and then overcoming them with age. For us as young women, to sing this powerful message amplifies the song’s message.”

Both Cheyenne and Mr. Manni are eager to perform John Lennon’s iconic “Imagine” with the full choir, conducted by fourth-year senior Singer Emma Clavel ’23. Mr. Manni is also excited for the highly-anticipated premiere of Kendra Payne ’20’s newest composition, “Homecoming,” created specifically for this event.

Instrumental Performances

For longtime performing artists like Emma and clarinetist Amy Kim ’24, the power of music at Blair will continue to be felt long after graduation in May. The Spring Concert represents more than a capstone to the semester; it is a tribute to their years of dedication to their art.

“Blair Orchestra has meant so much to me, in a way that it helped me find the joy of making music with my peers,” Amy shared. “It never felt like a class. It was more of an outlet from my busy day. I’ve enjoyed every moment of Blair Orchestra, and going into my last concert at Blair, I feel quite emotional but also thankful for Mrs. Pagotto and this crew for an amazing experience.”

The emotion and connection behind each note will be felt throughout the instrumental repertoire from a well-rounded slate of composers and pieces performed by the Jazz Ensemble, Symphony and Chamber Orchestras, from the standard repertoire to the contemporary. Audience members will recognize the familiar notes of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition” and sweeping melodies of Jurassic Park’s theme song, honoring the film’s 30th anniversary.

“Our smaller ensembles are preparing for an amazing opportunity to perform yet another concert next week at the Kaufman Music Center in New York City, where they will play a diverse repertoire of pieces by female, Black and historic composers,” Director of Instrumental Music Jen Pagotto shared. “It has been a busy semester, and I am immensely proud of the hardwork and dedication from our students to achieve such success.”

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