Battle of the Bands lights up the stage

Lena Kogan, Staff Writer

Student bands came together to light up the night. Schreiber’s annual music competition, Battle of the Bands, took place on April 2 this year.

Several weeks before the competition, student bands auditioned in the auditorium with one of their songs and judges selected five bands to compete.For the last four years the clear winner of Battle of the Bands was Decadence, composed of 2012 graduates Bobby Katz, Jesse Weil, Brian Aronow, and seniors Miles Kurtz and Reed Kalash.  Because half the members graduated, the band broke up, but they left behind a legacy.

“They were a really, really amazing band,” said sophomore Jesse Epstein, a member of the winning group, Infinity.   Bobby was actually my private lesson saxophone teacher for a couple of years and its really special to me that I was able to be in the place that he was in before he graduated.”

The five participating bands were Blue Suits, Other Side, Outrageous Fun, and Infinity. The groups each had four to six members, with the exception Infinity, which had a total of 17 performers.  Prior to the competition, each band was responsible for selling as many tickets as possible to attend the event.  The group that sold the most tickets chose the order in which the bands performed.

Each of the bands selected had 30 minutes to perform. Bands played a large variety of songs ranging from “Valerie” by  Amy Winehouse to “Crush Crush Crush” by Paramore.

“I really enjoyed the thrill of just performing.  I have always had some stage fright, but the initial fear turns into adrenaline, which becomes really fun if I control it right,” said Epstein.  “This was my first Battle of the Bands, and I was very hesitant to actually join, but I was really glad about my decision.”

In preparation for their musical performances, students scheduled their own rehearsals and chose the instruments they would be using at the battle.  Students also had to choose the songs for their 30 minute performances.

“Battle of the Bands this year was a great experience. My band and I practiced at least three or four times a week for the month of and prior to Battle of the Bands,” said junior David Tung. “We all put a lot of time into it and we all had a great time.”

Social studies teacher Ms. Patricia Dietz oversaw the event and managed sound.  Many students helped by managing the stage and announcing the bands.

Junior Peri Chain organized “Infinity,” the winning band.

“The difficult part was actually getting rehearsals together, especially because we only had two months to prepare,” said Chain.  “But because I was able to work with such talented musicians, the music was probably the easiest part.”

This musical ensemble, much like the others, was a combination of singers and instrumentalists. However, instruments ranged from guitar, bass, drums, and piano to unconventional instruments like alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, bass clarinet, trumpet, and even strings.  Chain formed this band for Battle of the Bands.

“Playing is always fun,” said Chain.  “Winning is just the icing on the cake.”

Winners were then largely chosen based on the way they were received by the audience, and were awarded a special Battle of the Bands trophy.

“Battle of the Bands is a very humbling experience for the musicians of Schreiber,” said senior and Blue Suits member Miles Kurtz. “Only when you play in front of a large crowd do you realize maybe you don’t sound as good as you do in your keyboard player’s basement.”