An unforgettable “Night at the Movies”

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

The Greenville High School (GHS) Department of Fine Arts gave a musical treat to the local schools and the community on Sept. 12. The GHS Symphonic Winds and the Tiger Pride Jazz Band performed “A Night at the Movies”, a musically reminiscent stroll through blockbuster favorites. 

Lee Herring, the band’s new director, debuts his teaching career at GHS with big plans for the ensembles.  

“The GHS Symphonic band and the Tiger Pride Jazz Band are two different ensembles and they differ in many ways,” Herring said. “While our concert band serves to bring enjoyment to the community at large, we hope to establish a reputation for our jazz band that would lead to hiring us to play for different clubs, organizations, banquets, or events.”

Email newsletter signup

The bands, in a mature fashion, performed “A Night at the Movies” four times that day, first for Bright Beginnings and W.O. Palmer, then for Greenville Elementary School, later for Greenville High School, and finally at the Ritz Theatre for community members. 

Herring expressed the importance of exposing the youth to the musical arts. 

“It’s imperative for these students to have exposure to the arts and music at a young age,” Herring said. “Studies show it is good for development, it’s also just good recruitment for the future of the program!”

Trish Powell McCullough, the mother of band member Daven McCullough, said she was very impressed with what the ensembles were able to learn and perform in just four weeks. 

“It’s very impressive that they have only been working on that whole concert for one month,” McCullough said. “Amidst marching band rehearsals, academic studies, Symphonic and Jazz Band practices, and other extracurricular activities such as JROTC. They keep their plates full and I’m very impressed with them.”

The performance “A Night at the Movies” featured music from 14 different films, and renditions of three well known musical scores. Herring said some of the student’s favorite songs of the night were “What a Wonderful World,” “Hooked on a Feeling,” and “John Williams: Movie Adventures,” which featured “Star Wars,” “Jurassic Park,” and “E.T.” 

Herring explained the goal of the concert was to engage with the community in a meaningful way. 

“One of the pieces performed was a selection of songs from ‘The Sound of Music,’ a movie that I imagine crossed the silver screen of the ritz in 1965!” Herring said. “We hope it brought back memories to those that may have viewed it in the theater. We want to show the community that being in the band has a direct influence on many of our lives.”

Herring said he is excited and honored to announce that The Tiger Pride Marching Band has been selected to perform for the Talladega YellaWood Race on Oct. 1.

Anne Elise Shealy, the assistant drum major for the marching band and saxophonist in the symphonic and jazz bands, says the concert felt special to her. 

“It was so much fun to be back on my saxophone Tuesday night for our first concert,” Shealy said. “The performance was special to me as a senior because it was my “last first concert”! It has been really fun playing with the jazz and symphonic bands over the years and I look forward to our upcoming concerts and shows.”

The band is slated to perform its Fall Concert, featuring the middle school concert band, the high school symphonic band, and the Tiger Pride Jazz band, on Oct. 17 at 6:00 p.m. at the Ritz. 

The Veterans Concert is Nov. 9 at 6:00 p.m. at the Ritz. “Christmas at the Ritz” will follow on Dec. 14-15 at 7:00 p.m., and the Christmas Concert will be performed at the GHS auditorium on Dec. 19 at 6:00 p.m.