Written by Aubri Juhasz, Oyster Bay High School Student Friday, 27 December 2013 12:25
“The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear.”
This timeless sentiment, made popular by the 2003 film Elf, is a governing force for many choirs during the holiday season. On the dreary Friday of Dec. 6, members of the Oyster Bay High School Mixed Chorus, directed by Supervisor of the Performing Arts Peter Rufa and choir director and Oyster Bay alumnus Seanna Burke, put this proclamation to the test as they spent the day traveling throughout New York City, complete with a visit to the historic Empire State Building and Radio City Music Hall.After sufficiently stocking up on seasonal inspiration at a performance of The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, members of the Mixed Chorus set out for a day of caroling. Making their way down the bustling New York City blocks, an impromptu performance was given at Sbarro, a chain pizza eatery, followed by spontaneous caroling at a Starbucks, on the street and throughout Bryant Park.
“Everywhere we went, people stopped to listen, it was a really great feeling,” said senior Juliet Bibla.
Shepherded into the gleaming lobby of the Empire State Building, the ensemble, clad in classic black with splashes of festive red, were greeted as celebrities. The building was not another spontaneous venue for performance, but rather the initial reason for the day’s agenda. The Mixed Chorus’s performance at the Empire State Building was a mark of extreme honor as they were told by personnel that their performance would be the first in more than 80 years, the third group of musicians to ever perform there and the first to ever be formally invited to do so.
From the 80th floor of the building, the singers serenaded tourists and personnel with holiday classics such as “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” and “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” as well as a preview of their winter concert including the piece, “I Am in Need of Music.” A special addition to the chorus was Oyster Bay High School Art Teacher Karen Crowley, who is herself an accomplished singer.
Singing high above the skyline of most of New York City is an opportunity that seldom presents itself to the most distinguished of musicians. For the members of the Mixed Chorus it is another prestigious feather in their cap.
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
February, Black History Month, was celebrated by the Hood A.M.E. Zion Church of Oyster Bay with a series of special events.
“The whole month was inspiring, so I am looking forward to doing it next year,” said Black History-Harriet Tubman Committee Chair Diane Cortes-Evans.
The month included a visit from Assemblyman Charles Lavine, who attended the Feb. 9 service and presented Pastor Linda Vanager with a citation from the NYS Legislature for the church’s work in preserving the Pine Hollow Cemetery, and a lecture by historian Simon Rutledge.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 11:47
Residents in the Oyster Bay-East Norwich school district may need to pony up more in taxes as a result of a proposed exemption for veterans. Across New York State, school districts are being asked to provide this special exemption, which provides three tiers of tax breaks for vets based on whether or not they saw combat or suffered a disability.
While a similar exemption already exists at the county level, the state left individual school districts to decide if it would be in the best interest of the taxpaying community.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 12:01
On Saturday, Feb. 22, as temperatures rose to well above freezing for the first time in weeks and the melting snow created a thick fog, the Oyster Bay High School Varsity Lady Baymen Basketball Team showed up at Long Island University ready to play.
Thursday, 27 February 2014 11:48
The Winter Varsity Sports Season is into post-season play in Oyster Bay. Many fine young athletes have excelled this season and were chosen by the Oyster Bay High School coaches as Athletes of the Month for February.
Cassidy Exum has been a member of the varsity wrestling team since his freshman year. Since that time, he has achieved All-County honors, which includes a Nassau County Small School County Championship. This year, Exum started his competitive season with success. He was a place winner in the annual Locust Valley Tournament, a Hank Paris Tournament Champion and a Bethpage Tournament Champion, where he was presented with the Champion of Champions Award. Exum’s success is due to his work ethic, dedication and discipline.; he is a fierce competitor which will help him as he competes for his second Nassau County Championship. Exum is coached by 2012 Coaches of the Year Jay Davis and Doug Axman.