CGPS Musicians Dazzle in Chamber Recital; Prep School Music Department Head Reflects

Last week, student musicians assembled in the Prep School theater for their much-anticipated Chamber Recital. The Weekly spoke with Sarah Stewart, Prep School music department head, about chamber music, the students’ preparation process, what the CGPS community can expect from the Spring Concert tonight at 6:30 p.m. in the Prep School gym and more.

What is CGPS Chamber Recital? How is it different from the Spring Concert?

Our Chamber Recital is smaller than the Spring Concert. Chamber Music was created several hundred years ago to be enjoyed in an intimate setting. We have students who are performing individual instruments (piano, cello, voice) and in smaller ensembles. Mr. Morss gave it a wonderful description of being "a hidden gem" in our community. 

What was the preparation process for the recital like?

Most of the ensemble performing rehearse during classes or club time. Many of our students study music privately with a teacher to progress faster. Those students finally got to show the School exactly how far they have come!

How have you seen your musicians evolve and progress as artists throughout the year?

Each and every student has the ability to grow and reach as high as they would like to. It takes time, dedication, talent and patience. Those are the basis of a solid foundation in music. What each student does with them is up to them. It is always wonderful to watch the progression. We have amazing talent at CGPS. 

Do you have any words for your students following the recital?

Simply, congratulations! Some students are excited to perform while others are terrified. I remind every student to set his or her own goals for performing. Is it practice for the NYSSMA competition? Practice for performance aspects? Try to get nerves out? There are many reasons to perform. It teaches a child many things.

What can you tease about the Spring Concert tonight? What can the CGPS community expect? 

Without a doubt, it is going to be an upbeat and fun concert with lots of students performing their hearts out! These ensembles have been rehearsing all semester for this one moment. For seniors, this is truly their last moment and their last concert. The dedication is special with our students. They love this school, and they love the music performance.