Caroline Wilkerson ~ Copy Editor

On Thursday, Feb. 21st and Friday, Feb. 22nd, the University of Lynchburg Wind Symphony and Orchestra with the Community Big Band performed a movie concert featuring Walt Disney. Due to inclement weather and the University being closed on Wednesday, February 20th, the concert was cancelled for that night.

The musicians performed different songs from The Lion King, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Toy Story, Beauty and the Beast, Mary Poppins, Aladdin, and Miracle. The University choir also sang live to a couple of the songs too.

Dr. Chris Sharp arranged almost all of the music performed during the concert. According to the University of Lynchburg website, Dr. Sharp, “is a professional composer, arranger, orchestrator and musician. He has extensive experience as a professional trombonist, having served for 13 years as a bandleader and sideman for The Walt Disney World Company.” Additionally, Dr. Sharp “has provided music for many noted clients including the Disney parks worldwide, Universal Studios, and SeaWorld.”

Many of the performers had a lot to say:

Senior, Mark Stephens, said, “This concert was especially exciting for me because it was Disney, and not something that I have ever done before. The music was exciting and invoked all of the childhood feelings I had when watching these movies years ago. My love for Disney movies has been reignited, and I cannot wait to play more Disney music in the future…but for now I have a few Disney movies lined up to watch to hold me over.”

Sophomore, Claire Steger added, “I really truly enjoyed taking part in this amazing set of performances! It is so exciting to be a part of such a wonderful crew of musicians and performers. It seems crazy to me that even though a bunch of us were sick before and during the show, the show must go on, and we sold out all two nights of performances!”

“This concert was so much fun to play. The Disney theme was relatable to everyone, young and old. My favorite piece was The Miracle, because that music is unpublished and has only ever been played in the movies. It was a great opportunity,” said freshman, Nina Caldwell.

Audience members were also impressed with the performance.

Junior, Toni Kingery said, “I really enjoyed the concert! I loved how the woman played the piano to the old Mickey mouse show. It was amazing to watch her and watch Mickey on the screen and how they played the keys at the exact same time. I also really enjoyed the last song the orchestra played to Miracle. I got chills when they started to play the song to the final scene in the movie. This was my first time watching our live orchestra, and it was not a disappointment at all! I can’t wait for them to put on another show.”

While junior, Carol Oberhelman added, “I liked that there were parts of the movie to set the scene for the musical piece that was going to be played. I also liked how there was a combination of the orchestra and the choir. My favorite part of the whole night was the Circle of Life from the Lion King and the piece from Miracle because it really felt like I was in the movie watching it in person!”
The next Wind Symphony and Orchestra concert will be held on Friday, April 26th at 7:30 p.m. in Sydnor Performance Hall.

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