Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Virtual Culture - Wildcat Style!

From makeshift studios to online tutorials, our Wildcats have turned to the arts to express themselves. Please enjoy this brief example of some of the incredible art, music, and dance created by our students. - Wildcat musicians playing for our local nursing homes. - An outstanding Flipgrid assignment featuring a 6th-grade band student. A 5th-grade violist shares what her superpowers would be and what her theme song would sound like. 

Maybe right now you have lots of time and engaging with your child in the arts is going really well. 

Maybe you're juggling your own job at home and all the school work to be managed and it's really hard. 

Maybe you're an essential worker isolating away from your children and you can't be there in person.

Maybe you're a teacher, doing your best to teach online, helping your students to continue to become the great artists you know they can be. 

Education looks really different right now and that is okay. 

Do what you can.

Be kind to yourself.

Encourage your child.

We are all cheering you on!

"And once the storm is over, you won't remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won't even be sure whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won't be the same person who walked in. That's what this storm's all about." - Haruki Murakami 

Your West Genesee Fine Arts Staff 

Monday, March 9, 2020

Music in Our Schools Month & Stonehedge STEAM Event

We are celebrating our 35th "Music in Our Schools Month," or MIOSM! The purpose of MIOSM is to raise awareness of the importance of music education for all children - and to remind citizens that school is where all children should have access to quality music education programs. Thank you to our dedicated team of music educators here at West Genesee for your outstanding service. Our student musicians have been very busy kicking off MIOSM!

Festival of Bands Concert

On Wednesday, March 4th and Thursday, March 5th, members of our high school band ensembles had the opportunity to work with Dr. Russ Mikkelson, who serves as the Director of Bands at The Ohio State University. These students collaboratively rehearsed and performed an outstanding concert that was enjoyed by all!

Congratulations to our wonderful West Genesee Middle School 6th Grade musicians on your outstanding concert on Tuesday, March 3rd! It was really enjoyable to hear how much you have all progressed since your December concert! 

Our three West Genesee Jazz Ensembles all traveled to the 33rd Annual Oneida Jazz Festival to compete on Friday, March 6th. All three groups received a Gold Award for their outstanding performance and musicianship. Congratulations! 

Are you looking to check out some other fabulous musical performances? Then you are in luck! We have many coming up for you to choose from: 
  • Monday, March 16th: Camillus Community Band at 7:30 pm 
  • Tuesday, March 17th: Camillus Middle School 7/8 Orchestra and Band at 7:00 pm, West Genesee High School Auditorium 
  • Wednesday, March 18th: West Genesee Middle School 7/8 Orchestra and Band at 7:00 pm, West Genesee High School Auditorium 
  • Thursday, March 19th: West Genesee High School Full Orchestra & Symphony at 7:30 pm, West Genesee High School Auditorium 
March hasn't just been about music in our schools! On Thursday, March 5th, Stonehedge Elementary School hosted its first-ever "I Wonder STEAM" event, which featured beautiful displays of science, technology, engineering, art, math, and live musical performances! The evening was student-driven and had a wonderful turn-out. Congratulations to all involved, the night was spectacular! 
5th Grader Mia L and her selection of paintings. She used various techniques to create diverse effects!

One of Mia's paintings, which was inspired by a lavender field. 
Artwork made from Pistachio shells. 

5th Grader Olivia B and her various Pour Paintings.

This one shows WILDCAT PRIDE! 

5th Graders Maddie M, Madison B, and Isabella L had a very interactive presentation all about wolves! Madison B drew the picture above their heads with a pencil. It was spectacular! 

Thank you for your support of Fine Arts in our community! 

Friday, February 28, 2020

Give Us Hope

The 7-12 Choral Festival and District Art Exhibit was a remarkable showcase of the many ways students can engage in creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, and communication at West Genesee. Students in grades K-12 had a selection of diverse and eloquent art projects displayed, while our 7-12 choral musicians performed challenging music with expressive sensitivity. Particularly notable was the grand finale, which featured over 300 of our wildcat musicians uniting with one voice to share an important message about hope.
Baby Yoda/The Scream Parody Painting 

"We must never underestimate the power of giving hope to a child." - Give Us Hope, Jim Papoulis
4th Grade artist Max was one of our many featured artists. His Agamograph features a detailed Godzilla on one side. Can you tell what is on the other? 
Congratulations to the teachers and students on a truly spectacular concert and art exhibition!

Today, students from the West Genesee High School Dance Ensemble visited students at West Genesee Middle School in their physical education classes. Thank you to Steve Shoults, Janine Corning, and Caroline Brackett for facilitating this cross-district collaboration! 

We have many upcoming events if you'd like to support our Wildcat musicians and artists!
  • Tuesday, March 2nd-Friday, March 13th: West Genesee Middle School Art Exhibit at Maxwell Library 
  • Tuesday, March 3rd: West Genesee Middle School 6th Grade Concert at WGHS Auditorium, 7:00 pm. 
  • Thursday, March 5th: West Genesee High School Festival of Bands, featuring guest conductor Dr. Russ Mikelson from The Ohio State University. WGHS Auditorium at 7:30 pm. 
We hope to see you at an upcoming art or music event! 

Monday, February 10, 2020

February Fine Arts Update

Congratulations to the cast, crew, pit, production staff, student interns, and volunteers on a truly sensational musical production of Hello, Dolly! It "Only Takes a Moment" to see how hard you all worked over the last few months. BRAVO!

Are you looking for something to do when the weather is grey? We have many upcoming events that feature music and art students that will be sure to brighten your day! On Saturday, February 15th, the West Genesee Winterguard will compete for the first time in ten years. We are thrilled to have this wonderful program re-instated. Their first competition begins at 3:00 pm at East Syracuse-Minoa High School. Tickets for admission are $8, and you are sure to enjoy the visually stunning work of Mrs. Moser-Vogler and the West Genesee Winterguard.

Right after our mid-winter recess, come on out to hear the 7-12 Choral Festival on Thursday, February 27th at West Genesee High School. This concert will also feature a K-12 art display! The sights of the artwork and the sounds of over 300 students singing together is sure to be fantastic.

The art students of West Genesee Middle School will have their work on display at Maxwell Library from March 2nd-13th. Our libraries offer many wonderful programs; check one out while you admire our student art work!

West Genesee Middle School 6th grade students in band, orchestra, and chorus can't wait to share beautiful music with you on Tuesday, March 3rd at 7:00 pm in the West Genesee High School Auditorium. They have been working hard to develop strategies to improve the quality of their performance. From Mrs. Cheney, the orchestra teacher:
"We were working on dynamic contrast in one of our pieces, and I asked 'Why do you think the composer asked us to play this part soft, and then the last part forte?' It took a few responses to get past the 'HOW' we do it and get to the 'WHY,' but then they contributed words like 'mood' and 'expression' and 'energy,' which was kind of a new level of thinking." Great work, Mrs. Cheney and orchestra students! 

Dr. Russ Mickkelson, Professor and Area Head of Conducting Ensembles at The Ohio State University, will be joining our high school band students. All high school band students will have a chance to work with Dr. Mikkelson in rehearsal on Wednesday, followed by a concert on Thursday, March 5th at 7:30 pm in the West Genesee High School Auditorium.

March is a busy month for our Fine Arts students. Check back for an update after mid-winter recess. Thank you for your continued support of the arts in our schools! 

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Hello, Dolly!

West Genesee High School is proud to present Hello, Dolly!   February 6 and February 7 at 7:00 p.m., and February 8 at 2:00 p.m.

Based on the play, The Match Maker by Thornton Wilder; with a Tony Award-winning book by Michael Stewart; and musical score by the late Jerry Herman; Hello, Dolly! tells the story of the effervescent Dolly Levi (played by Cassidi Callaghan). 
A widow who can be characterized as a “grand puppeteer,” Dolly takes her castmates and her audience on the adventure of a lifetime on the streets of New York. “What do you do for a living, Mrs. Levi?” asks Ambrose Kemper (played by Joshua Farrell) in the first scene of this musical comedy. “Some people paint, some sew…. I meddle. “ replies Dolly. 
With beloved characters, Hello, Dolly! stands the testament of time in American musical theater, winning the 2017 Tony award for Best Revival of a Musical. Filled with memorable songs such as: “Put on Your Sunday Clothes”; “It Takes A Woman”; “Before the Parade Passes By”; “It Only Takes a Moment”; and of course the signature, “Hello, Dolly!
This musical will have you dancing in your seat. With beloved characters that include: Horace Vandergelder (played by Matthew Cabiles); Cornelius Hackl (played by Aidan Sperduti); Irene Molloy (played by Laura Alvaro); Minnie Fay (played by Abigail Ray); Barnaby Tucker (played by Sean Alvaro); Ermangarde (played by Logan Battaglia); and Ernestina Simple (played by Abigail McGrath.)  
West Genesee’s production of Hello, Dolly! is directed by Kristyn Sperduti, with Anthony Alvaro (music director), and produced by Andrea Scerbo. The choreography is by Bradley Benjamin-Stone. Technical direction is provided by Bill Mercer (lighting director), Steve Ficarra (technical director), and Corey Hobin (sound director). All costumes are designed by Cindy Kissane and Katharine Tarkulich. The production photographer is Dave Mason and graphic design is by Chris Andrews.

Thank you the student directors for their dedication and support; Dance Captain Natalie Scerbo, Student Costume/Makeup Designer Jaxson Schorer, and Director's Assistant Zara Dafoe. 

This show will touch your heart and music to fill your head. Hello, Dolly! will stay in your minds and hearts well beyond the length of the show.

The spectacular costumes for this production have been professionally created and provided by Kansas City Costume Company. 

Tickets can be purchased in advance at or at the door for $15. You can also call the Ticket Call Center at 1-800-514-3849, extension 4. All seats are reserved. Please call Mrs. Tracy at the West Genesee Fine Arts Office with any questions at 315-487-4612. 

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Dance for a Cause & Senior High All-County

This Thursday, January 16th, our talented and hardworking dance students will be performing in their first dance recital of the school year. This recital will take place in the West Genesee High School Auditorium at 7:30 pm, and is sure to be a beautiful display of artistry and expertise. Many of the dances you will see were choreographed by the students themselves. 

The dance students will be accepting donations at the recital for "Comfort Cases" to provide personal items for children in foster care. The following items would be greatly appreciated for this cause: 

  • New or gently used backpacks/duffels
  • Stuffed animal (12” or smaller)
  • Soft blanket (60”x60” or bigger)
  • Pajamas/Socks
  • Books (kids or teen)/journals/pens
  • Coloring books/crayons
  • Hairbrush/combs/picks
  • New, unopened travel-size toiletries
  • Shampoo/conditioner
  • Soap/body wash
  • Lotion
  • Deodorant
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste/mouthwash

These items will be assembled and packed by dance students the week of February 29th-March 3rd. If you have any questions about this cause or the dance recital, please contact Caroline Brackett at Thank you to Ms. Brackett and our dance students for their positive impact on our community.

Congratulations are in order to the West Genesee High School Music Staff for hosting a very successful Senior High All-County Festival. 49 members of West Genesee performing ensembles were a part of this festival, which involved over 300 students from Onondaga County. A special thank you to our own Mr. Borsz, Mr. Alvaro, and Mr. Mercer for managing the band, chorus, and orchestra. Your efforts to create a wonderful experience for our students did not go unnoticed!

Monday, December 16, 2019

Music, Winterguard, and Art!

Our Wildcat student musicians and artists have been very busy over the past week! We hope you were able to enjoy some of the spectacular performances by our elementary and middle school musicians. 

If you'd like to hear more beautiful music, you're in luck! We have three concerts this week:

  • Monday, 12/16: Camillus Community Band, High School Chorale, Trebled Lads, and Girls Fermata Nowhere, 7:30 @ WGHS 
  • Wednesday, 12/18: Onondaga Road 5th Grade Orchestra, 5th Grade Band, and 4/5 Chorus, 7:00 @ WGHS 
  • Thursday, 12/19: High School Chamber Winds, Full Orchestra, and Full Symphony, 7:30 @ WGHS (featuring a very jolly guest conductor!)

We are thrilled to share that West Genesee has a competitive Winter Guard for the first time since 2009! Stay tuned for program updates and a competition schedule. Best wishes to our hard-working students and staff on a successful season! 

On Tuesday, December 17th, 129 of our talented high school visual arts students will submit their creative work to the National Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. This is the largest annual art competition in America. West Genesee is proud to support our student artists in their creative endeavors. We look forward to enjoying their wonderful creations and wish our wildcats luck as their work goes up against nearly 340,000 student submissions from across the country!