ASTORIA — With a half hour to kill before taking the stage for their concert at Astoria’s historic Liberty Theater, members of the Ilwaco High School jazz band, choir and symphonic band were busy backstage — busy chatting, joking, singing and dancing. If they were nervous about performing in the ornate music hall, it sure didn’t show.
Nearly 400 people attended the concert, which was a fundraiser for the IHS Associated Student Body. With admission by donation rather than tickets, the show raised more than $1,100 for the ASB.
The jazz band’s set featured a number of older songs with newer arrangements, including their take on Glen Miller’s “Moonlight Serenade,” early 20th century hit “Makin’ Whoopee,” and a modern jazz version of the traditional folk song, “The House of the Rising Sun.”
The choir, who perform under the moniker, “Epic Echo,” began their set with the pre-Civil War era spiritual “(Joshua Fit) The Battle of Jericho,” before meandering around more modern material, such as the Leonard Cohen-penned “Hallelujah,” and the Katie Perry pop hit “Firework.”
The symphonic band closed out the concert with a set that included a suite by composer Frank Halferty titled “Pacific Sentinels,” inspired by three lighthouses on the west coast. It was the debut performance of the suite. The group also performed the Robert W. Smith composition, “Encanto,” which featured a rare solo by senior Will Price.
There were 42 kids in the symphonic band, 15 in jazz band and another 24 in the choir,