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NHS Students Selected For Regional Music Festival


Newtown High School students were selected to participate in the 1999 Western

Regional High School Music Festival. This annual festival will take place at

the Stamford High School, 55 Strawberry Hill Avenue, on Friday, January 15,

and Saturday, January 16.

The 26 students chosen are among the finest high school musicians selected to

represent Fairfield County. Selection was based on an all-state audition held

in November 1998. Each student was required to perform a solo. The practice

sessions and rehearsals that led up to the students' solo performances were

intense and demanding.

Students are enrolled in at least one of the music department class offerings

which include: Band, Orchestra, Jazz Band and Chorus. Most of the players

began formal music/voice instruction in grades four and five.

Many of Newtown's graduates proceed to major in music, said Michelle

Hiscavich, director of the Newtown High School music department, and then go

on to attend such colleges as Eastman, Brown and Stanford.

Among the 26 students participating are Terry Bates, Christina Bennett, Sarah

Blau, Melissa Cartoun, Jonathan Danyew, Nicholas DeLuca, Geoffrey DiBeneditto,

Philip Demand, James Dunseith, Shannon Elf, Andrew English, Corey Galotta,

David Kremenitzer, Kari Levinson, Brittany McClure, Sharon McNulty, Christina

Palmer, Kevin Pious, Rachel Romanelli, Michael Rostafin, Andrew Sirois,

Ashwini Srikantiah, Grant Skinner, Spencer Swain, Maggie Tomasiewicz and Kate


These young musicians will take on a rigorous schedule while at the festival.

On Friday, rehearsals are held from 3 to 9 pm. Rehearsals will resume early on

Saturday, running from 8 am to 6 pm. This time will be spent working on the

refinement of their musical performance.

The students will have the opportunity to work with professional guest

conductors during the regional festival.

The evening performance is scheduled at 7 pm. It is open to the public, though

seating is very limited.

As Ashwini Srikantiah, a string player, observed, "This will be an amazing

experience for us to play music with such serious, talented musicians. It is

like a reward to us for performing well!"