The news site of Miami Palmetto Senior High School

The Panther

The news site of Miami Palmetto Senior High School

The Panther

The news site of Miami Palmetto Senior High School

The Panther

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Student Symphonies: A Look at the MPSH Music Department

Among the flurry of students, both in classrooms during third period and wandering the halls at lunch, music rings out from Miami Palmetto Senior High Orchestra teacher Angela Lin and Band teacher Monica Serrano’s classrooms. However, these Orchestra and Advanced Band classes make up just a small portion of the expansive, talent-filled Music Department at MPSH.

The department consists of multiple parts, such as Intermediate and Advanced Orchestra, Marching Band and several other Band classes ranging from Band 1 to Jazz Band to Advanced Placement Music Theory. MPSH sophomore and flute player for Symphonic, or Advanced Level, Band Yaar Dotan Fuchs breaks down what it takes to be a performer.

“Band is a class period, so we practice in [class]. We do sometimes have rehearsals after school if it’s for a concert or if it’s before a competition or [Music Performance Assessment], which is an ‘event’ where we have to prepare pieces of music and the judges give us a score and evaluation,” Dotan Fuchs said. “The only real homework we get is flip grids, where we have to do a two-minute video twice a week.”

Orchestra has a similar schedule, with practices being every first period for the Intermediate class and third period for the Advanced class in room 6116. After countless hours of practice, the groups have perfected a daily routine to rehearse as efficiently as possible.

“Every day we start out, the students come in right away, they set up without me even asking them to. So it’s already a routine that we’ve built together,” Lin said. “And then we warm up together. A warmup is just like the warm-up for athletics: you need to warm yourself up before you start to play, or else you will injure yourself. And then we start to rehearse.”

Orchestra also has multiple performances throughout the school year, ranging from the fall concert to Christmas caroling in the halls to the holiday show, which is what both Intermediate and Advanced Orchestra classes are focused on practicing right now.

“We’re currently working on holiday music for the holiday show. It’s actually going to be a little bit tight for us because we just finished our fall performance or fall show. So we only have maybe seven more rehearsals before the holiday show,” Lin said. 

MPSH senior, Concertmaster and First Violin of Orchestra, Daniela Martinez explains that not only have the repeated rehearsals helped her, but Lin has elevated her skill incredibly in the past four years.

“Ms. Lin is a really good teacher. She’s honestly pushed all of us as a class and individuals, and because of her and everyone else in the class, I kept taking Orchestra. She’s very supportive and she’s very understanding,” Martinez said.

Dotan Fuchs also shares her love for Lin, Serrano and the community Symphonic Band has brought her, which keeps her passionate and inspires her to encourage potential members to join.

“It’s really fun. It’s kind of like a community within the school that’s really independent, like a family. And everyone is very friendly,” Dotan Fuchs said. “And we have a lot of fun together. Ms. Serrano and Mrs. Lin are both really, really great, nice people. I would definitely tell people to at least try it for a year.”

Lin shares the sentiment, and she encourages students to try out the music program if they are considering joining it in future years. 

“I would say go for it, especially at Palmetto. Palmetto is a school where you can try everything. So you can try athletics, you can do music, you can take a bunch of AP classes, and it all works out,” Lin said. “So I think if you’re considering it, and you’re on the fence about it, just try it out and see how you like it. I think that’s the beauty of Palmetto.”

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About the Contributor
Edie Carneiro
Edie Carneiro, Sports Editor
Edie Carneiro is a sophomore and Sports Editor. This is her second year on staff, and she looks forward to growing the sports section of the Panther and improving her editing skills. Aside from newspaper, Carneiro enjoys traveling, reading books and biking.