Liberty High School’s Symphony Orchestra placed second at the Texas Music Educators Association’s Honor Full Orchestra competition last month.
The group was directed by Julie Blackstock and Jamie Weaver who were thrilled with the performance of their students.
The orchestra performed two selections: a new work by Michael Schelle, composer-in-residence at Butler School of Music in Indiana, called “AND THEN THEY JUST DISAPPEAR INTO THE NIGHT…” and the Finale of Symphony No. 2 by Sergei Rachmaninoff.
Blackstock said that performing the Rachmaninoff piece was a longtime personal and professional goal. “I’d always hoped to have the opportunity to perform that with a group of students, so this was particularly special to me. It was very moving to experience that with these students,” she said.
The Schelle piece has only been performed three or four times. “It was commissioned by the Detroit Symphony and Detroit Youth Symphony in 2016. It was an honor to get to play it—especially music of a living composer,” Blackstock said.
Liberty has earned second place at the TMEA contest three times in the last four years.
“The students worked so hard and put in tremendous effort. I really believe it was the finest performance yet by the Liberty Symphony. They’ve only become better over the past few years,” Blackstock said of her students.