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His face is on billboards and bus stops around town, but Tito Muñoz — the new Virginia G. Piper Music Director of The Phoenix Symphony and a rising young star on the conductor circuit, is an unassuming man who speaks humbly, equating his role to that of “a glorified traffic cop.”
Tito Munoz conducting the Cleveland Orchestra
You won’t find many Dr. Seuss books in the hands of high school students. But the books’ messages can inspire for a lifetime, like this one: “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”
The Brubeck Brothers Quartet is returning to the Valley, and this time they are bringing the spirit of jazz to the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 19.
BEST HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER
Mesquite High School
500 S. McQueen Road
(480) 632-4750 or MesquiteHighOrchestras.org
Mesquite High’s Dudley passes on the gift of music
By Stephanie Perrault
The resounding theme of Amber Dudley’s life is music — and it’s a catchy one Dudley loves sharing with her students at Mesquite High School, where she has taught for the last 15 years.
The Director of Orchestras and Performing Arts Department Chair, Dudley says many of the best things in her life came as a result of music. She began her musical journey by playing piano in church. She went on to learn viola in her school orchestra, attended Northern Arizona University on a music scholarship, and became the first person in her family to earn a college degree. She met her husband because of music, and their three daughters have musically inspired names.
Dudley wants to pass those blessings on to her students, giving them the benefits she had to grow personally and professionally.
“I want to give the same opportunities to my students as I was given and use music as an educational tool to inspire youth to achieve greatness within themselves,” she says.
In addition to leading the regular string and orchestra programs, she provides travel opportunities for students to music festivals and famous concert venues — like Carnegie Hall and The Kennedy Center — and offers professional mentorship to her students even after they graduate.
“I love to see the students shine and to encourage students that they are unique, special, and should celebrate their individual talents. Being a mentor to (them) is an honor,” Dudley says.
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Williams Field High Schools Symphonic Band received the highest rating possible at the 2014 ABODA State Concert Festival.
Anna Han is one of three Arizona high school seniors named a U.S. Presidential Scholar this week. The honor is somewhat deceiving in name.
Decompress before heading back into the work week with a Sunday afternoon concert sure to soothe harried nerves and spare your pocketbook.
The Campo Verde High School Orchestra will host a fundraising concert on May 3 at 7 p.m. in the Campo Verde Auditorium. The Freedom Rock Experience will feature the C.T.S. rock group, who will play compositions with the students.
The community orchestra wraps up its performance season with music from Verdi and William Herschel, along with Gustav Holst’s “The Planets.”
After surviving six rounds of challengers heading into Saturday, Cooley Middle School seventh-grader Nila Dhinaker defeated 26 other spellers to win the 2014 AEF Arizona Spelling Bee.
Another Arizona State University student has died a tragic death in Tempe.
A young woman who died after falling from a Tempe apartment balcony early Sunday was a student at Arizona State University.
Symphony of the Southwest and Youth Symphony of the Southwest perform their annual side-by-side concert, which features narration from Mesa Mayor Scott Smith for “Tubby the Tuba” and “The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra,” as well as a combined performance of Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherazade.” Original artwork from Mesa and Tempe Union high school students will be shown on a large screen during the performance. The art will also be on display in the lobby as part of a silent auction.
Best Band/Music Ensemble
East Valley Millennial Choirs and Orchestras
performs at Mesa Arts Center
(855) 233-2900 or millennial.org/east-valley
This national group, formerly known as the Mormon Choral Organization, began its Arizona chapter in 2009. With seven performing ensembles — six choirs and a symphony orchestra — Millennial provides a musical entry point for all ages, from 4 year olds to adults, training each in the structure and forms of traditional, sacred and classical music. All groups perform at Mesa Arts Center.
Sonoran Desert Chorale
1530 E. Indigo St.
(480) 835-7059 or sonorandesertchorale.org
Salt River Brass
performs at Mesa Arts Center
(602) 334-4556 or saltriverbrass.org
Bill Bitter went to college expecting to graduate and become a concert violinist, but he realized his talents were better served as a teacher than performer.
Highland High School orchestra director Bill Bitter.
Campo Verde High School orchestra 2014
The Campo Verde High School Orchestra is collecting clothes and textiles as a fundraiser for new musical instruments and field trip expenses.
Highland High School Orchestra Director Bill Bitter [Courtesy Gilbert Public Schools]
The fanciest event of the year for the denizens of Hollywood is nigh, and what better way to celebrate the bright lights, glamour, fame and misfortune of the Oscars than to throw a world-class shindig?
Higley Unified School District will host community performances at both of its high schools this week.
Mesa Public Schools will host the High School Harp Ensemble on Feb. 24 at 7 p.m.
Williams Field High School showcases work from its fine arts department, accompanied by musical performances from the high school bands, orchestra, theater and dance troupes, and choirs. Food trucks will also be on hand.