Photo by R.C. Wheater Sr.
Fremont High School
band director Mark Breza directed the band in a Thursday morning rehearsal of Octane,
the piece composed especially for the bands May 20 concert.
High school band's concert
to feature its own "Octane"
a school day in spring, the Fremont High School bands new performance piece flows
along somewhat placidly until, like the cars leaving the school at 3:10 p.m., it surges
ahead in a burst of youthful exuberance.
local audience will have the first opportunity to hear the new composition, Octane,
when the FHS band performs it for the first time on Monday evening, May 20 at the Dogwood
Center for the Performing Arts.
composer Dr. Quincy C. Hilliard wrote Octane specifically for the FHS band,
giving Director Mark Brezas young band a unique opportunity to perform a
does capture the exuberance of youth, said Breza, who has been teaching young
Fremont musicians for 26 years. The kids really like playing the piece. Its
challenging, and it makes them think. Its been a good challenge for them.
are a lot of complicated rhythms in the piece, he added. It flows for a while
and then its pedal to the metal.
musicians said that they are enjoying the piece.
lively, said flute player Breanna Hillard. It has changes in tempo. It almost
tells the life of a student.
starts slowly and nice, said percussionist Vlad Cioceanu, then fast, with a
has a good grudgy feeling, a darker part to it, added saxophonist Brandon Kuck.
something special for the concert celebrating the first school year in the new FHS
facility, Breza had arranged for John Moss, a composer from Benzonia and a friend of Brezas
from his days at Michigan State University, to compose a piece for the band and the
occasion. Moss, however, died shortly after agreeing to compose the piece.
a replacement composer, Breza followed a suggestion and tried contacting Hilliard, even
though Breza was confident that Hilliard would be too busy and too much in demand.
Hilliard is in demand internationally as a conductor, adjudicator and guest clinician, and
his composing commissions have included a piece for the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta and
the score for the documentary film The Texas Rangers. He holds the Heymann
Endowed Professorship of Music at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
Breza called Hilliard at his home in Louisiana, catching the composer as he was carrying
in his groceries. After a lengthy and friendly conversation, Hilliard agreed to step-in as
the FHS bands new composer.
band has been working on Octane for approximately a month, with Breza seeking
guidance from Hilliard via e-mails.
definitely like the dynamics, said Emily Nestle. It goes from loud to soft and
actually a challenge, said Dakota Murphy.
has a fairly active part to play, percussionist Sam Mayworm added.
with Octane, the FHS
band will also perform Anne
McGintys Music for a Celebration,
Ralph Fords Bellingrath Gardens,
John Philip Sousas The Liberty Bell,
Katrina Cavalieces percussion piece
The Childrens Magic Box,
Norwegian composer Johannes
Hanssens Valdres, and Gustav
Holsts Marching Song, arranged
by John Moss.
May 20 concert is scheduled to
start at 7 p.m. Admission will be free.
Grant paves the way
for nine-mile pathway
Fremont Area Community Foundation recently announced the award of a grant to Croton
Township for a new nine-mile pathway connecting the Croton and Hardy dams.
are delighted that both Croton Township and the Fremont Area Community Foundation are
pioneering this effort to develop pedestrian and bicycle friendly trail systems in Newaygo
County, said County Commissioner Chris Ortwein. The cooperation and leadership
shown by Brooke McTaggart from Consumers Energy, and the enthusiastic support of the
Croton Township board and the Croton business
community were key in moving this project forward.
said that the project will join Croton Dam and Hardy Dam together by expanding existing
roadway infrastructure and restoring an historic section of abandoned roadway near Croton
project will allow the public to walk, run or bike all the way from one dam to the other
safely for the very first time, said Newaygo Nationals Association Chairman Scott
Faulkner. This exciting addition to Newaygo County will also allow for challenging
events such as biathlons and triathlons to occur along the beautiful Muskegon River, and
sets a real precedent that will allow other Newaygo communities to become involved in the
Croton Pathway is the first of several planned phases that are expected to connect Newaygo
County both internally and ultimately to Michigans extensive network of connected
pathways that span the Lower Peninsula. The Croton
Pathway is set for construction during the summer and fall season of 2013.
are pleased to be selected by the Foundation as a partner in developing the first phase of
a much bigger project that will positively affect the lives of the entire County for
generations to come, said Croton Township Supervisor Morgan Heinzman. Both our
local businesses and residents are excited to begin to see the pathway constructed this
year, and we want to thank the public for their support.
County board supports path around pond
its meeting last week, the Newaygo County Board of Commissioners adopted a resolution supporting the concept of a
30-mile hiking and bicycling trail encircling Hardy Pond.
from Consumers Energy, Newaygo County and Mecosta County parks, Big Prairie Township,
Aetna Township, and Mecosta Township are forming the Hardy Pond Non-Motorized Trail
Steering Committee in hopes of making the idea a reality.
a beautiful way to show off our county, said Commissioner James Maike.
commissioners heard from Big Prairie Township Supervisor Dave Wright, who cited the
opportunities for tourism that the project would bring.
would be a destination trail for mountain bikers, Wright said, one unlike any
in the region. The economic impact of this would be enormous.
also approved the fee amount for the Livescan Fingerprinting Service soon to be available
at the sheriffs office. The agreed on fee will be $62. The only other local
fingerprinting service is available through the Fremont Police Department which, former
Fremont police chief and current county commissioner Phil Deur noted, charges a reduced rate of $61.50.