Strings students at Henry E. Lackey High School spent a recent afternoon honing their skills as musicians when guest conductors set up shop in Dr. Alan Freeman’s classroom.
“I love doing this … it’s my seventh or eighth time here,” said Stephen Czarkowski, a conductor and cellist. “This orchestra just gets better.”
Czarkowski, a conductor of the Frederick Regional Youth Orchestra, and others, was joined by YaShauna Swan, a coach with FRYO, and Nathan Wisniewski, a U.S. Air Force master sergeant and arranger for the Air Force Strings. The three were brought to Lackey by Freeman with the help of a Charles County Arts Alliance Arts in Education grant.
The orchestra is preparing for a festival in the spring and working on “Albinoni’s Adagio,” a popular piece arranged by Lauren Keiser. “We work extremely hard at mastering notes and rhythm before the clinicians arrive,” Freeman said. “But notes and rhythm aren’t enough. We also try to play expressively.”
While the music selections change year to year, the habits instilled in the musicians build and grow. “… Certain professional habits are reinforced over and over again,” Freeman said. “And a lot of kids are back every year.”
Charles County Public Schools provides 27,108 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 36 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.