OPHS Band’s Music at the Movies returns

First live concert after a two-year break


Borquez conducts Band students inside the Pavilion concert

“Moana,” “Star Trek,” “La La Land” and “Coco” are some of the songs that were performed by the Oak Park High School Band’s first live concert since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

Music at the Movies is performed every year at Oak Park High School, and has become one of the largest fundraisers held for this program. Many Band concerts which the band students participate in focus on skill and technicalities and require hours and hours of studying. This concert, however, aims for the students to put on a show for their audience, which is exactly what they did.

“‘Music at the Movies’” is one of our most fun-oriented concerts where the pieces aren’t necessarily the most technically challenging,” said senior and Instrumental Music Council Executive Board member Max Raney. “It’s less about the challenging nature and more about playing tunes that people recognize and are fun, so I’m excited to just play something that people enjoy.”

The students have been rehearsing since the beginning of the school year under the eye of Mr. Borquez. The band classes are divided into different sections: Concert Band, Wind Symphony, String Orchestra and Wind Ensemble, all which performed at the concert.

“I think the work that everybody has done for the past months is actually paying off and I really liked the “How to Train Your Dragon” piece; that movie has such a great story, and the piece was really well done,” Concert Band member Cameron Lambe said.

The COVID-19 pandemic has made it hard for the students to properly show all their work because of quarantine, so this concert has been the right response to the effort that they have been putting in so far. All these students were given the possibility to connect more with each other using the music.

“I love the concert. It’s been years since I was able to go to an instrumental concert. I love seeing the kids. They’re all dressed up, into the music that they are playing and they sound amazing. My basic idea is: we want kids to do [it],” Principal Mr. McClenahan said. “And I love seeing kids doing [it]. I’m so excited to be able to give them the opportunity to do that after the pandemic.”