January 16, 2021 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Samohi Chamber Orchestra Claims First Place At Northwest Orchestra Festival:

Fifty-four high school ensembles from California, Oregon, Idaho and Washington participated in the 40th Annual Northwest Orchestra Festival on March 9, including the Santa Monica High School Chamber Orchestra who claimed first place.

The festival was held at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham, Oregon.

Samohi orchestra director Joni Swenson led the Samohi students to their impressive showing.

“The literature which chamber performed was varied in style and quite challenging,” said Swenson. “I am thrilled and proud of the students for their work in preparing the pieces and for their focus in executing the music at such a level of artistry.”  

During a three-day trip to the Portland area, the Samohi group enjoyed first-rate coaching sessions at Portland State University with violinist Carol Sindell and cellist Hamilton Cheifetz. 

Sindell is a student of Jascha Heifetz, the most influential violinist of the 20th Century. 

An internationally known solo artist, Cheifetz studied under celebrated cellist and pedagogue János Starker, and has performed at the White House.

Samohi’s top 20 string players comprise the Chamber Orchestra, which meets twice weekly after school and frequently performs in the community, sometimes stepping outside the classical repertoire. 

Last May the Chamber Orchestra backed up Glenn Frey of The Eagles fame in a concert at the Wiltern Theatre.

“Chamber has given me a community during my time at Samohi,” said senior Ilana Greenberg. “Mrs. Swenson is so dedicated to our group, and challenges us with literature I could never have dreamed of playing. All of the students constantly push each other to strive and do better.”

Last week Chamber was one of five Samohi Orchestra ensembles that performed at the Southern California School Band and Orchestra Association Festival hosted by Santa Monica High School. 

All five received unanimous “Superior” ratings from adjudicators.

Across-the-board “Superiors” from three performance judges and one sight-reading judge was a Samohi Orchestra first since the school began hosting the annual festival in the late 1980s.

To inquire about booking the Samohi Chamber Orchestra or a smaller ensemble, email Joni Swenson at jtswen@gmail.com.

in News
Related Posts

Edify TV: Overhaul for Canyon Property?

January 15, 2021

January 15, 2021

A unique Santa Monica Canyon property may be getting an overhaul. Learn more in this video made possible by School...

Edify TV: The Westside’s Best Pies

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Here are some of the best pies on the Westside ahead of National Pie Day on January 23. Learn more...

City Council Votes Mayor Himmelrich And Team To Keep Council Positions: Santa Monica Beat – January, 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * City Council Votes Mayor Himmelrich And Team To Keep Council Positions...

65-Year-Old Santa Monica Bakery on Verge of Shutting Down

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Westside Food Scene January 14, 2021 By Kerry Slater 65-Year-Old Santa Monica Bakery on Verge of Shutting Down  A beloved...

Food Review: The Westside’s Insanely Delicious Tijuana Tacos

January 14, 2021

January 14, 2021

Tacos 1986 in Westwood Village stands out amid a crowded taco scene By Kerry Slater In a city filled with...

Santa Monica Pier Closed for Five Days in a Row

January 13, 2021

January 13, 2021

City cites warm weather forecasted for Santa Monica By Sam Catanzaro With temperatures reaching the 80s expected, city officials are...

Edify TV: Westside Kids Compete to Keep Beach Clean

January 12, 2021

January 12, 2021

Westside kids are competing to keep the beach clean! Learn more in this video made possible by Santa Monica College.

Santa Monica Fire Department Rolls Out Vaccinations

January 12, 2021

January 12, 2021

SMFD helps with rollout across county  By Chad Winthrop Beginning this month , Santa Monica Fire Department firefighters and paramedics...

SMC and MLK Westside Coalition’s 36th Annual Celebration of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 12, 2021

January 12, 2021

Mon, Jan 18, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM Online Only at 9am on Jan. 18th – Visit: MLKjrWestside.org  The Rev. Dr....

Assemblymember Richard Bloom Announces Intention to Run for L.A. County Supervisor

January 11, 2021

January 11, 2021

State rep. looking to replace Sheila Kuehl in 2022 By Sam Catanzaro With incumbent Supervisor Sheila Kuehl signaling she won’t...

Man Jumps to Death at Santa Monica Place

January 11, 2021

January 11, 2021

Man jumps off parking structure in Monday suicide  By Sam Catanzaro A man died by suicide Monday after jumping off...

Santa Monica City Resumes Preferential Parking Restrictions: Santa Monica Beat – January, 11, 2021

January 11, 2021

January 11, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Santa Monica City Resumes Preferential Parking Restrictions * La County Approves...

Edify TV: Santa Monica Pier Shut Down Weekends

January 11, 2021

January 11, 2021

Santa Monica Pier has been shut down on weekends temporarily as COVID-19 cases rise in Los Angeles. Learn more in this...

Edify TV: Santa Monica Bloomingdale’s Closing

January 10, 2021

January 10, 2021

Santa Monica’s Bloomingdale’s is set to shut down, adding to a sting of vacancies in the downtown Santa Monica area....