Riverhead Music Students Shine in the Capital
High School Students Receive an Enriching Experience During Washington, D.C. Trip
RIVERHEAD, NEW YORK (AUGUST 2023) — At the end of the 2022–2023 school year, the Riverhead High School Wind Ensemble, Riverhead High School Chamber Orchestra, Riverhead High School Chamber Choir and Riverhead High School Jazz Ensemble traveled to Washington, D.C. to perform in the 2023 WorldStrides Festival. The festival featured high schools from all over the world, and the students were evaluated by expert adjudicators, including professors of music, from across the United States.
“It is such an essential experience for our musicians to be able to hear, listen and learn from other ensembles throughout the nation and beyond,” said Riverhead High School music teacher Joseph Randazzo. “The students were able to receive feedback from distinguished professionals in the field and meet other like-minded performers from different parts of the United States and other countries.”
After impressing their evaluators with their performances, the Riverhead High School students joined their peers for an award ceremony dinner dance. The students continued their trip with a guided monument tour, visiting the spectacular sites and memorials on the National Mall, such as the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial, World War I Memorial and World War II Memorial. In addition, the students explored several Smithsonian museums, including the Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center, Museum of Natural History, Museum of American History, Smithsonian Gardens and U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. The trip concluded with the students witnessing the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery.
The instructors of each of the ensembles expressed pride at the exceptional manner in which the students represented the Riverhead community. Wind Ensemble Director Joseph Randazzo, Chamber Orchestra Director Marisa Macchio, Chamber Choir Director Bonnie La Gatta and Jazz Ensemble Director Crystal Crespo believe this trip significantly benefited the students’ growth as musicians, scholars and people.
“This trip enriched the students’ understanding of American music and history,” said Mr. Randazzo. “Our department looks forward to continuing to provide opportunities for our students to advance their musicianship while expanding their knowledge about our country and the world.”