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Sewanhaka Alum Goes ‘Big’

Sewanhaka High School alum Vince Scuderi took over the Metropolitan Room in Manhattan this past Sunday with his group, the Out of the Box Big Band. 

 

“The concert went well, with just the right amount of fulfilled expectations and controlled and chaotic surprise to keep the audience and the musicians on the edge of their seats and always wanting more,” said Scuderi.

 

The Out of the Box Big Band is made up of 17 pieces, which includes five saxophones, four trumpets, four trombones, a piano, guitar and string bass. Sometimes, they also had a vocalist to the mix. 

 

He says what appeals to him most about big band is its powerful sound and the variation in texture and dynamics. 

 

“It’s hard not to be moved by it because it’s just such a big sound,” says Scuderi. “My treat is when I hear the big band go from a soft, church-like feel to something loud and blaring and brassy. When we encompass those two sounds in one piece or an evening, that’s what I enjoy.”

 

Scuderi grew up in the area and his childhood love of music was fostered and encouraged by his teachers at Sewanhaka. 

 

“I was fortunate there to have some encouraging music teachers and I’m in touch with some of them to this day,” said Scuderi. One of his past teachers, Leo Ursini, even played lead alto saxophone with the band during Sunday’s show. 

 

While big band may not be the most well-known type of music, last Sunday’s show is just one example of how Scuderi is trying to help people become more familiar with it. 

 

“It’s a matter of exposure. We have to try as much as we can to get orchestras and big bands to go to where people don’t normally hear them. It has to be brought to the people. And more people will be wanting to find out where they can hear it. Generally if you leave it in a concert hall, it’ll become like a museum relic. We have to think of new ways to gain the public’s attention,” says Scuderi. 

 

“Live music is exciting to people. It resonates with people in a way that digital recording doesn’t. It’s nice to have music pop up in unexpected places,” he said. 

 

This past winter, Scuderi joined the Greater Westbury Council of the Arts, encouraged by its mission to promote the arts. 

 

“The arts council helps do something about putting more arts into people’s lives,” he said. “One of the things that attracted me to the arts council is that we can create events that people can hopefully be interested in and enjoy.” 

 

Find out more about Scuderi and the Out of the Box Big Band at www.outoftheboxbigband.com

News

The debate over New York State Common Core standards continues, with students from local school districts showing a mild resistance to the exams.

 

According to the New York State Allies for Public Education, 39 students in the Herricks School District opted out of the English exam, while 74 did not take the math test. For the New Hyde Park-Garden City Park School District, 17 students did not take the English test while 18 refused to take the math test.

At the Oct. 17 meeting of the Herricks Board of Education, Superintendent of Schools Dr. John Bierwirth discussed the recent investigation of students who have been illegally attending school in the Herricks School District, despite living in outer areas. Bierwirth said that 14 prospective cases were investigated and eight students were forced to leave the district.

 

Board of Education President James Gounaris said weeding out students who are attending school in Herricks under false pretenses is boiled down to one fact: it takes away valuable resources from the children of tax-paying members of the community.


Sports

The Sewanhaka Indians varsity football team hosted Elmont Spartans on Saturday, Oct. 18 in its final home game of the regular season. 

 

It certainly did not go as the Indians had hoped, falling 18-8, in a mistake filled game. Head coach George Kasimatis said the Indians had their chances, but kept digging themselves into a hole with mental mistakes on both sides of the ball. 

 

Playing from behind, senior running back Brenton Mighty was able to break free for a long touchdown run, to put the Indians on the board. 

Sewanhaka Indians Head football coach George Kasimatis told his team to expect a dogfight in this weeks game against the New Hyde Park Gladiators, and he was right after its 35-21 victory last week. 

 

“All the kids know each other really well, it’s always competitive when we play each other,” he said. 


Calendar

PTA Meeting - October 22

International Night - October 23

Halloween Dance - October 24


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