Area to be filled with sweet sounds this weekend

The cast of Fayette County High School’s 35th annual variety show. Photo/Special.

Peachtree Wind Ensemble’s 20th anniversary among numerous weekend concerts

This is a big weekend for music in Fayette County involving two programs with a long history.

Fayette County High School’s 35th annual variety show is just around the corner. “Everything Music 2012: A Night On The Town” opens on Friday, April 20, and continues through Sunday, April 22. The Select Chorus will be displaying, through a wide array of songs and dances, a weekend on the town. “A Night On The Town” was created by Richard Prouty with the assistance of his family and dedicated choral students. Those attending will hear a variety of music, including songs from the Broadway musical “Hairspray,” pop tunes by Katy Perry and Gavin DeGraw, and classic hits by Journey and The Who.

The dedicated members of Select Chorus work diligently in class, before and after school, and on their own time to make sure all their songs and dances are ready, as well as costumes and props. Members of the chorus participate in many activities outside of choir including band, academic clubs, sports, and theatre.
Preparations for this year’s show began in August 2011, when the students attended a weekend retreat at Camp Calvin to begin working on dances and the work hasn’t slowed down since. They have learned many more group dances at dance workshops and continued working on those every Tuesday and Thursday after school while adding to their repertoire student-choreographed numbers. In addition to the group numbers, this show features the many talented soloists in this year’s choir.

“A Night On The Town” takes you on a weekend adventure full of fun activities to do in our town beginning with a Friday night basketball game, as the Fayette basketball team tries to “Getcha Head in the Game.” Following the game, the fans go to their favorite hangout spot, Chick-fil-A. The next morning the audience will see many different types of people at Starbucks before they head to Piedmont Park for Screen on the Green. The story continues as the audience views a carnival scene and everyone is amazed with the“Pinball Wizard.” The final scene is a “Masquerade” at the Fox Theatre, complete with stories of romance and fun. The whole weekend ends as the teens dread school on Monday, yet reminisce on their exciting weekend with the song “You Can’t Stop the Beat.”

This year’s must-see variety show will take place on Friday, April 20 and Saturday, April 21 at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, April 22 at 3 p.m. at the FA Sams Auditorium. Pre-sale tickets are $5 for students and $8 for adults. Tickets at the door are $10. Advance ticket sales are available at the FCHS front office and from any Select Chorus member.

The Peachtree Wind Ensemble, celebrating their 20th anniversary this year, will have their spring concert this Sunday at 3 p.m. at St. Paul Lutheran Church. The winners of the Young Artist Competition will also perform at this show. The night before the concert will be a Member’s Dinner at St. Paul Lutheran Church at 6 p.m. honoring current and past members. The Peachtree Wind Ensemble provides a fun means for musicians to express and expand their talents for the enjoyment of the surrounding community. The practice Monday nights at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Peachtree City from 7:30-9 p.m.

The band, originally called the Peachtree City Concert Band, formed in 1991 by Bob Lancette. Their first rehearsal space was the band room of the J.C. Booth Middle School. Tom Stroud was the group’s next director and he was followed by John R. Miller from 1994-1998. Lancette returned to lead the group in 1998 until he became ill. The Board of Directors for the group attempted to find John R. Miller. Without current information on John Miller, they looked in the phone directory for John Millers in Fayetteville and started calling. John S. Miller answered the phone to a man asking if this was John Miller the band director. John S. Miller answered, “Yes, but nobody knows that.” It was during that time that John S. Miller became the conductor of the Peachtree Wind Ensemble in 2003.

The band then rehearsed at the YMCA facility on Huiet Road in Fayetteville. In 2007, Miller stepped down and Mike Landry, a clarinet and trumpet player, became the conductor. When the Peachtree Wind Ensemble had to find a new home after changes were made to the YMCA facility, the group moved to St. Paul Lutheran Church. The band thrived, growing up to 50 members and introducing more peformances including the Pizza and Pops series in front of Partners II Pizza. They also became the pit band for Twilight Theatre’s shows at “The Fred.”

In 2009, Mike Daniell, a music minister from Noth Fayette United Methodist, took the baton. In 2010, the group held their first Young Artist Competition for local middle school and high school students. Recently the group has partnered with the Point University (formerly Atlanta Christian College) where their music students will play with the PWE as their performing ensemble.

Out of the Peachtree City community band and the Peachtree Wind Ensemble, several smaller ensembles have emerged, such as brass quintets, woodwind quintets, trios, saxophone quartets, clarinet and flute ensembles. The band members enjoy a ‘members concert’ in the spring where some of these small ensembles and members of the band play for each other.

For more information on the band and this weekend’s concert, visit peachtreewind.org.

There are several other shows this weekend for music lovers.

The Fayette County Youth Orchestra presents its spring concert Friday at 7 p.m.. The concert will be held at Flat Creek Baptist Church, 161 Flat Creek Trail, Fayetteville and is supported by the Fine Arts Academy at Flat Creek. This is a free concert and will include music from Bach to Bernstein. The FCYO, under the direction of Cindy Wilson, has been in existence for two years. It has grown considerably and includes members from almost every middle and high school in Fayette County as well as a few members from Henry and Fulton County.

Totally dark and sleeping on most dates - save for a few local gospel concerts and dance recitals - the Wadsworth Auditorium in Newnan awakes annually for its most glamorous and culturally exciting event. It will happen again this Saturday, when the annual Wadsworth & Friends Concert comes to town. The brightly lighted stage will be filled with musicians of exceptional quality and a full house audience will dissolve the darkness.

Robert McDuffie and the 24-piece McDuffie String Ensemble will be joined by soprano Jeanine De Bique and baritone Christòpheren Nomura when Charles Wadsworth hosts the 20th Annual Wadsworth & Friends Concert and presents the Newnan and Coweta County audience with an exceptional Wadsworth Auditorium evening.

A spokesman from the Newnan Cultural Arts Commission stated, “Many of the concert seats will be garnered by patrons who truly appreciate and support the event. There is also a limited number of $20. General Admission tickets available. I hope the general public realizes what a value this is for a concert of this quality..  The Wadsworth & Friends Concert has become a “sell-out” … for both Patrons and General Admissions tickets.”
General Admission tickets for the concert are budget priced at $20. and are available at Scott’s Book Store and at Let Them Eat Toffee on the Courthouse Square, at Morgan Jewelers in Ashley Mall, or at the Bank of Coweta at Thomas Crossroads. Patron tickets for the event, including a post concert reception, are also available.

Starr’s Mill will present a Night of Stars at “The Fred” in Peachtree City Saturday night from 6-9 p.m. The concert provides an evening under the stars showcasing the talents of the Starrs Mill High School (SMHS) Music Department, featuring the Big Band sounds of the SMHS “Swingin’ Starrs” Jazz Ensembles, along with the “Octave Above” Jazz Choir and performances by other SMHS musical groups.  Tickets are $10 and are available from any SMHS Band Student and at the gate.  Proceeds benefit the SMHS Band program.

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