The auditorium at SWHS awaits an audience to witness the talents of the music department.
The auditorium at SWHS awaits an audience to witness the talents of the music department.
Aasrith Veerapaneni

No Longer an Underground Underdog

A call to support the Music Department

One of the strongest, and most underrated, parts of the South Windsor High School community has long been the performers of the Music Department. Featuring a line up of everything from guitar classes to award winning concert groups, there can be a home for all interested.

Yet, there always needs to be a gaze into the future. Where do changes need to be made in order for the music department to cement itself. What needs to be done for it to outshine the basement that it currently dwells in.

That isn’t to overshadow the many changes already occurring in the land of sheet music. Just this past year, the piano room has shifted downstairs, the Underground Music Club continues to grow exponentially, and staffing changes have marked up the entire summer and first quarter.

“The music department is more cohesive with the move of the piano room, causing everybody to be more connected,” comments Ms. Marisa Jardim, head of the orchestral groups, when asked about the recent changes. “All types of music students are coming together and working together, reaching new and different people.”

Entering her third year with the program, Jardim is more excited than ever regarding the changes on the horizon present for the department. The biggest point for change she talked about is gaining more instruments: “I would love more instruments…specifically electric ones like ukuleles and oboes to broaden what students can reach and play.”

Another shift that has been loud is straying away from the classical tunes, to better represent the student body. Along with different foreign pieces that Jardim has worked to bring in, we can see the shifts evident throughout the music department, especially in Mr. Jereme Martineau, the longest tenured member of the department and director of choral studies, we can see the shifts occurring. 

“We’ve bounced back from the downward trends caused by Covid,” he expanded upon while talking to The Prowl. “The foundation of the groups are really strong, and we’re just working to build upon that going into the future.”

That foundation has been marveled at for years. “It’s one of the best music departments in the state, especially one that I’ve worked at,” stated Ms. Angelica Jackson, the newest addition to the music department, who joined over the summer, serving as the director of the bands. “It has the support of the people and students base, with opportunists throughout the department.”

With those opportunists comes a rejuvenated look ahead at the future. Outside of the electric instrument call from Jardim, Martineau discussed a hope for a future expansion of space in both performance and practice space, while Jackson remains excited at placing her own personality throughout her groups. All three hope to build upon what has already been placed down, and all lead their respective group through competitions and shows with the same attribute: respect.

All of these directors are faced with the challenges of bringing in people of all different ages and from different backgrounds to fight towards a collective goal. They are able to discuss, cooperate, and coordinate everyone into performing in unison and harmony. The respect they have for both each other and the student can never be understated.

Thus, it is time to respect the music department as a community. Winter concerts are also right around the corner, which will benefit the organization, as well as the different year-round fundraisers. So take this as a call to action to visit the many different shows throughout the school year and bear witness to the talent present throughout the school and continue to raise money. 

But most importantly, send our amazing directors your support. Whether it is through positivity with Admin or emailing them with continued support. It is our duty to continue to support and push forward this movement, and allow the basement of our school to expand far beyond the confines of South Windsor.

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About the Contributor
Aasrith Veerapaneni
Aasrith Veerapaneni, Content Editor
Aasrith Veerapaneni is a senior at South Windsor High School, and the Content Editor for The Bobcat Prowl this year. When not working with the Prowl, he has his fingerprints all over the Music department, being a proud member of Choral Spectrum and Understaffed. He also watches a large variety of different sports, keeping himself up to date with all the stats and facts throughout the year. His passion for English and writing, and his competitive drive, is evident in all of his work.

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    anonymousOct 26, 2023 at 5:23 pm

    great job