A night for the arts in S. Routt

Band, choir and art students to display talents

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In South Routt, young musicians play concert pieces with conch shells and PVC pipes. Student artists create original sculptures with metal, willow sticks and plaster.

In other words, these aren't your ordinary band and art classes.

Two teachers at Soroco Middle School and Soroco High School are finding creative ways to inspire their students. Tonight, the results will be on display at the Soroco music concert, spring art show and ice cream bowl fundraiser, beginning at 5 p.m. at the high school.

"It's our big, end-of-the-year extravaganza," said Kelli Turnipseed, music director for the two schools. Turnipseed said the high school band, choir, jazz combo and middle school band -- a total of about 60 students -- will perform at the concert.

Middle school pieces include "Precession and Torch Dance," by Timothy Broege, and "Music for a Celebration," by Ann McGinty.

High school pieces include "Trials and Triumph," by Douglas Akey; "Chant Rituals," by Elliot Del Borgo; and a piece called "Dinosaurs." During Dinosaurs, Turnipseed said, things get really interesting.

"That one involves wine glasses, conch shells and PVC pipes," she said. "The kids get to sing and dance in the middle of it. My kids love to make noise without their instruments."

Making unconventional music helps students broaden their appreciation, Turnipseed said.

"I like to do things that aren't quite ordinary, so the kids realize they can be creative and step out of their comfort zone," she said. "Nice music isn't always Bach. It can be stomping their feet and blowing on conch shells."

Art teacher Karen Bertollini is no slave to convention either. Works on display tonight are created by students in seventh through 12th grades and include pencil drawings, collages, clay work, plaster masks, paintings and "found object sculpture."

"I gave each student a bag of stuff, opened up the classroom to them, and just told them to go for it and make something," Bertollini said. "They really had fun with it and came up with everything from boxes of flowers to a metal sculpture named Scoopy that looks like an E.T. variation."

Tonight's ice cream bowl fundraiser will help raise money for Soroco art programs. Five dollars gets you an ice cream bowl made by a student and filled with a sundae.

"It's going to be a lot of fun," Turnipseed said of tonight's event. "These groups keep getting better and better."

-- To reach Mike Lawrence, call 871-4203

or e-mail mlawrence@steamboatpilot.com

What: Soroco music concert, spring art show and ice Cream bowl fundraiser

When: Tonight. Art show and fundraiser begin at 5 p.m., concert begins at 7 p.m.

Where: Soroco High School commons area and old gym

Call: Music director Kelli Turnipseed at 736-2531, ext. 4124.

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