On May 13, 2014, the Mills High School String Orchestra and the Skyline College Concert Band joined together to present a thrilling concert of classical and popular music in the Skyline College Theater. The 32-member award-winning string ensemble from Millbrae, under the direction of veteran music teacher Doug Miner, began the night with 45 minutes of diverse pieces, from eighteenth-century Mozart to the twenty-first-century hit song “Let It Go.” Just before intermission, the Skyline College Concert Band joined the Mills High School musicians on stage to perform Gustav Holst’s orchestral tour de force “Mars, the Bringer of War” from his suite The Planets, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the piece’s 1914 premier and the start of World War I. For the second half of the night, the 47-member Concert Band continued the centennial anniversary theme with selections composed during the Great War as well as some modern pieces – The Red Baron, “Downton Abbey” Suite, Cyprian Suite – with musical references to World War I. Skyline College clarinetist Pedro Gomez magnificently stole the show as featured soloist in Carl Maria von Weber’s Concertino for Clarinet and Orchestra. In Fall 2014, Pedro will transfer to San Francisco State University on a performance scholarship, pursuing a degree in clarinet performance. For the final piece of the night, the Band and audience played and sang together the newly-composed Skyline College “Alma Mater,” a song which will be featured in the 2014 Commencement Ceremony: A beacon shining through the fog, Alma Mater stands, Ever watching and cherishing Her children hand in hand. Skyline, O Skyline, Worthy of our praise, Skyline, O Skyline, We shall love thee all our days!
Article by Zack Bruno | Photo by Edwin Serrano