Landrum Band Branching Out for the Holidays!


LMS Jazz Band

Carli Williams

Hundreds of kids in formal wear, adjusting clasp-on bowties and chattering. Instruments are scattered around the room haphazardly. Meanwhile, Mrs. Sacharski looks on, already on the verge of a migraine. It’ll be a long night. It’s the night of the Christmas concert, and with it (what she hopes will be) the beautiful sound of a full, experienced band.

December 11 and 13 were the days of Landrum’s Christmas concerts. December 11th was the Beginning Band, Chorus, and Symphonic Band concert, while December 13th was the Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, and Wind Symphony concert. Both received a warm welcome and hearty applause.

The Beginning Band played songs such as “Jingle Bells,” “Dreydl, Dreydl,” “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” “Good King Wenceslas,” “Holiday Sampler,” “Up on the Housetop,” and “First Winter’s Sleigh Ride.”

The Chorus, between the two lower bands, sang “All I Want for Christmas is You,” “Let it Snow,” and “Shalom Chaverim.” “Shalom Chaverim” is a traditional Israeli folk song to end out their portion of the concert.
Symphonic Band included “Playground Parade,” “Rockin’ St. Nick,” “A Rather Bumpy Sleigh Ride,” “Woodwind Quintet,” and “Countdown to Christmas.”  “Playground Parade” was conducted by Mr. Partin, a UF Band Intern. “Woodwind Quintet” was played by Sydney Wagerer (flute), Chloe Bowe (oboe), Pranita Ghimire (flute), Ian Aman (clarinet), and Jameson Beckham (clarinet).

The Wind Ensemble selections included “Welcome Christmas” (featuring Ian Dowling on trumpet), “Celebrating Chanukah,” “Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree” (featuring Mia Cook on clarinet), “The Chipmunk Song,” and “Can Santa Can-Can?” During The Chipmunk Song, the entire Wind Ensemble brought out kazoos to play the melody.

The Jazz Band songs were Mr. Grinch, All I Want for Christmas is You, and Jingle Bell Rock. All Christmas classics, they were conducted by Josie Sagasser, an eighth grader and member of Wind Symphony.  In addition to these songs, Jazz Band played their entire program while people were walking in. The solos were played by several people, including Logan Simon, Sloan Donaldson, CJ Joyner, etc.

Wind Symphony played Carol of the Bells, Polar Express, Dance of the Slippery Slide Trombones, Trepak, White Christmas, and I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas. A few songs were favored over others by the audience, including the following. Trepak, which was played with past generations of Landrum band members. Around 10 of the invited showed up. Dance of the Slippery Slide Trombones was a favorite, as the trombone part made the crowd laugh and enjoy it, much more so than the original.

This isn’t the only Christmas event that Landrum Band has had/is going to have this year. In the past, on November 30th, Landrum Jazz Band (as well as the Drumline) took a field trip to two places. First, they went to Crookshank Elementary School. There, they played for 2nd – 5th graders. Then, they went to the trolleys in downtown St. Augustine and played for those waiting in line to take a tour of the historic city. The band played their set of 12 songs three times before closing up.

On December 20th, or next Thursday, Jazz Band will take a trip to PV/Rawlings to recruit band kids for next year. The fifth graders there will get to hear the Jazz Band’s entire program in the hopes that some of them will want to be a part of Band next year. As many of the fifth graders in Landrum’s zoning will be at Palm Valley Academy next year, Landrum could use the extra band rookies.