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Jazz Band goes back to Florida

The band is given the opportunity to perform in Disney every two years for an extended weekend

During an extended weekend off after Christmas break, the band was able to have a concert in Disney under the bright sun.

Every other year, Malvern’s upper school jazz band is lucky enough to get the chance to travel down to Florida during January to go to the Disney Parks and perform. This year’s trip included 28 students and ran from January 13-16. They visited the Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios parks.

Music Teacher Mr. Emmanuel DelPizzo is the director of the band. He said that the trip is required for members of his band unless there is an emergency.

Along with performing and exploring the parks, the trip has an aspect of learning and improving the band members’ musical skill, according to DelPizzo.

“We participate in a two and a half hour workshop called ‘Jazz It Up’. It’s intense,” DelPizzo said. “The cool part about it is that everyone has to solo, so it gives kids who don’t think they can solo a chance to try.”

One of the most interesting parts of the trip, according to DelPizzo, is getting a behind-the-scenes look of Disney.

“We get to go behind Disney, where you’re not supposed to go because it ruins the magic,” DelPizzo said. “We get to see how one of the world’s most efficient and precise professional venues works, because they entertain all day long, every day.”

For many students in the band, this was their first time. “[It was a] fun, entertaining, great bonding experience with other classman that are not my age,” freshman trumpet player CJ Mulcahy said.

Junior saxophonist George Snyder had already been on the trip his freshman year. He said that he was nervous this time because he had a solo in one song, but it was an interesting trip.

“I was able to be prepared,” Snyder said. “I was able to go to different rides since I spaced out the time better. The second day this year, we went to the Disney workshop thing and the guy there showed us cool tips and stuff on band.”

The band performed in Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney), outside near a lake. It was a bigger stage and a bit different than performing at the Duffy Center, according to a few of the band members and DelPizzo.

“Playing outside in general gives a very different feel,” sophomore saxophonist Jacob McGraw said.

“The crowd was really good, because it’s a free concert, and people like to spend their days down [in Disney Springs],” DelPizzo said. “The pressure it put on our guys was amazing, so it really fine-tuned and polished our performance.”

McGraw said that band members bonded with each other, even if they were in different grades. “Definitely, kids that I would talk to every once in awhile became like everyday friends,” McGraw said.

At the very end of the trip, all students had fun and truly enjoyed themselves while at the parks according to all three of the band members .

“It was a great experience and I highly recommend it, that’s about it,” McGraw said.

The only sad thing for a few upperclassmen was that this was going to be one of their last band trips, since the end of the year is closer than people think.

“It was emotional in the fact that it was my last band trip,” Snyder said.

About Steve O'Meara

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