Students Begin Advent Season with Annual Concert
On Tuesday, December 2nd, fourth through eighth grade students from Immanuel Lutheran School in Alexandria, VA, took a field trip to hear the Noontime Cantata Concert Series performed by the Washington Bach Cantata at the Church of the Epiphany.
This is the third year in a row that ILS students have had the opportunity to attend the December Noontime Cantata Concert Series. Yesterday’s Cantata was Sehet, welch eine Liebe, and featured Gi Young Kim on the organ playing Bach’s Prelude and Fuge in E Minor, BWV 548.
Music plays an important role in the classical curriculum at ILS. Beginning in Junior Kindergarten, all students are taught music appreciation through Compositions and Composers of the Week. Each week, the entire student body listens to and studies a composer, including Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonin Dvorak, Antonio Vivaldi, and George Frideric Handel. Students also learn singing, performing in programs throughout the year. Beginning in third grade, students also begin performing on the recorder and hand chimes, and students in the upper grades have the opportunity to learn the hand bells.
Following the performance, ILS Music Teacher Miss Emily German commented, “The Bach Consort is truly a one of a kind, world-class ensemble. They beautifully capture the endless inspiration of Bach’s compositions with one stunning performance after another. To attend one of their exquisite concert offerings speaks volumes of the musical appreciation of both our student body and our larger Immanuel community. Maestro Lewis introduced us to the entire audience prior to the start of the concert, warmly praising our students’ presence and how it demonstrates that both old and young alike can wonder at the genius of Bach and enjoy excellent classical music. It reminded me of what Hungarian composer Zoltán Kodály (1882-1967) once said: “A child is the most susceptible and the most enthusiastic audience for pure art; for in every great artist the child is alive – and this is something felt by youth’s congenial spirit.””
ILS 8th grade student Alicia Radtke shared her reflections on the performance, noting “What I enjoyed most from this performance is how the singer and the instruments told a story musically. It surprised me how the organist did such an intricate piece.”
Immanuel Lutheran School is a classical, Christian academy located in Alexandria, Virginia, and serving students in grades Junior Kindergarten through Eighth Grade. Originally established in 1870, Immanuel Lutheran School is celebrating its 70th year on the current campus on Russell Road. Additional information on Immanuel Lutheran School can be found on the school website: www.immanuelalexandria.org/school.
The Washington Bach Consort was founded by Music Director J. Reilly Lewis in 1977 with a mission to perform to the highest artistic standards the music of J.S. Bach and his Baroque contemporaries. This professional chorus and orchestra is recognized for its performances of 18th Century music on period instruments. More information on the Washington Bach Consort and the Noontime Cantata Concerts is available online: www.bachconsort.org.