Creative Arts Assembly Recap

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Creative Arts Assembly Recap

Upper School students perform “A Million Dreams”     at last week's assembly. Photo courtesy of Cyrus Lowe on Flickr.

Upper School students perform “A Million Dreams” at last week's assembly. Photo courtesy of Cyrus Lowe on Flickr.

Upper School students perform “A Million Dreams” at last week's assembly. Photo courtesy of Cyrus Lowe on Flickr.

Upper School students perform “A Million Dreams” at last week's assembly. Photo courtesy of Cyrus Lowe on Flickr.

Vionna Eshghi, Arts and Lifestyle Editor

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Like years prior, this year’s creative arts assembly included performances and showcases from all of Menlo’s creative minds. From visual to performing, all arts were appreciated and displayed for the Menlo community.

Junior members of the Jazz Band welcomed students into the gym, with Aaron Morgan at the drums, Adam Kasser at the bass, and John Hanson at the piano. Senior Braedon Young opened the assembly with his great energy and spirit, following the jazz performance. A video played for the audience showing Young “being late for assembly” while interview various Menlo students, both involved and not involved in the arts. Once he made an appearance on the stage, he welcomed Creative Arts Director Steven Minning.

Once Minning introduced Menlo’s chorus group, Upper School Science teacher Eugenia McCauley played “A Million Dreams” from The Greatest Showman on the piano while the chorus sang along with soloists freshman Tucker Gold, junior Griffin Thomas and senior Jordan Gold.

Upper School journalism, yearbook and moviemaking teacher Tripp Robbins shifted the assembly’s focus from performing to visual arts. After he showcased several movie making pieces, photography teacher Pete Zivkov pointed the crowd to the photo gallery in the gym lobby. Upper School studio art teacher Nina Ollikainen then took the stage to speak about the importance of art and inspired students to channel their inner creativity, followed by a slideshow of many works from her talented art students.

Cast members in the upcoming play of  “Noises Off” sang a song from last year’s spring musical, “Oliver!”, and introduced this year’s fall play to the audience with a short skit.

Upper School director of orchestra, jazz and chamber music, Leo Kitajima, impressed the audience along side his orchestra group while performing Vivaldi Concerto Number 5 in G Minor. Kitajima then led the jazz band in the performance of two different tunes: Jalen Santoy’s “Foreplay,” which samples Stanley Turrentine’s “Sunny,” and Mac Miller’s “Dang!” with freshman Gretchen Witte on the vocals.

To close the assembly, Upper School dance teacher Jan Chandler introduced her dance classes to the stage. They wowed the crowd with a lively dance to “You Can’t Stop the Beat” from the musical “Hairspray.”