Fall Orchestra Concert Hits The Stage Tomorrow Night


Orchestra Practicing for Fall Concert. Photo by Stephanie Swanson

By Nicole Zelazko, Arts & Entertainment Editor

The Niles West Orchestra is set to hold their first concert of the year this Thursday, Oct. 19 in the main auditorium. The concert will begin at 6:30 p.m. and will last roughly two hours.

This concert will be the debut for DaJuan E. Brooks, the first African-American orchestra director in the state of Illinois. His adjustment to the Niles West orchestra, after the retirement of the previous director Steven Katz, has been smooth.

“The preparation for the concert has been amazing, even though it’s been a little bit stressful,” Brooks said. “It’s been eventful and enlightening more than anything because the students are learning a lot about me, while I’m learning a lot about them. In the end of the day, we’re all just learning a little bit more about music.”

Sophomore Iza Batorowicz’s looks forward to performing in her second fall concert in her time here at West. She feels as if the orchestra will perform well, and that the time spent rehearsing will pay off during the concert. Batorowicz looks forward to sharing her sound with the audience.

“We put a lot of work into every individual piece we play. Every piece we play is unique in its own way, which makes this concert very special,” Batorowicz said. “Many people in the orchestra are extremely dedicated to performing their best at all times, so it’s rewarding to be able to spend a night celebrating that.”

Senior and veteran-orchestra member Julia Gladysz considers the fall concert her favorite because of the unique music played year after year. Though switching her instrument from violin to harp just this past summer, Gladysz is confident she will perform well this Thursday. 

“Because Mr. Katz is gone, the orchestra has had to adjust to a bit of a new playing style. I think Mr. Brooks is doing a phenomenal job, and I know this Thursday will live up to his expectations,” Gladysz said. “It is hard to believe this will be the last fall concert I’ll ever play.”

Make sure to come and support the orchestra members this Thursday night. Their dedication and pure sound is notable and deserves to be recognized.