The 54th Annual District Music Festival and Art Exhibit sponsored by the Sewanhaka Central High School District will be held at Sewanhaka High School on Feb. 5, at 7:30 p.m. More than 300 students from all five Sewanhaka’s high schools will participate in the music festival. Tickets are available through the music departments of all of the district high schools for $8.
The festival is dedicated to Patricia Rudd. Rudd served on the New Hyde Park-Garden City Park School Board of Education for 15 years, including four as president and two as vice president. She also served on the Sewanhaka Central High School District Board of Education for five years, including three as vice president.
Students, selected by audition, will perform as members of a district orchestra, band, and choir under the direction of three noted guest conductors. The conductors have impressive resumes which have earned them accolades throughout the metropolitan area.
Band Conductor William Riley was the director of bands at Lynbrook High School from 1972 until his retirement in 2008. Upon his retirement, he served as Interim Professor of Music Education at C.W. Post College and is currently on the Music Education Faculty at Adelphi University.
Riley remains active as the principal French horn with the South Shore Symphony, is a member of the Nassau Winds and performs with the Adelphi University Symphony Orchestra and Wind Ensemble.
Chorus Conductor Meg Messina has led the vocal music program at Mineola High School for the past 13 years. She is an active part of Mineola’s thriving theater program, which boasts multiple full-scale dramatic and musical productions each year. Messina also performs with Long Island’s newest select chamber choir, The eVoco Voice Collective.
Orchestra conductor Richard Wright currently serves as the chair of the music department at Suffolk County Community College, where he is a full-time Associate Professor of Music and the Orchestra Director. For the past five years, Wright has been the conductor of the Bay Area Symphony Orchestra in Sayville, which is part of the Bay Area Friends of the Fine Arts.
He has been the guest conductor at the Massapequa Philharmonic for the last three seasons.