A Banner year for the Music Program at St. Mary’s School! Students Recognized for their Talents by Selection in Multiple Honor Choirs

music 1We are pleased to announce that St. Mary’s School students Elizabeth Brands, Sophie Sherlock, and Gabriella Wilkerson were selected to participate in the 2016 TN Treble Honor Choir.  The singers sang under the direction of Dr. Derrick Fox, assistant professor of choral music education and choral conducting in the Ithaca College School of Music.  The Tennessee Music Educators Association commissioned a piece to be performed at the conference opening concert and ceremonies.  The piece entitled “Honeybees” was composed by Andrea Ramsey. Dr. Ramsey attended the conference and rehearsed with the choir as well as attended the choir’s premier performance of her composition.
The Tennessee Treble Honor Choir is an auditioned choir made up of 130 – 150 of the best 5th and 6th grade students from schools throughout the state of Tennessee.  Each student submitted a solo audition recording of her or him singing “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” in the keys of F and A Flat.  A committee of music educators from across the state adjudicated the auditions listening for pitch accuracy, tone quality, diction, ability to use chest and head registers, and phrasing.  The Treble Choir performed at the Tennessee Music Education Association Professional Development Conference held April 13-14 at the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville.
St. Mary’s Students also participated in the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) Southern Division Honor Choir in Chattanooga March 9-11.music 2
Marigrace Tidwell (8th grade) was 1 of 8 students chosen to sing in the Junior High/Middle School Honor Choir from the state of TN and THE ONLY singer from East Tennessee.  The JHMS Choir was comprised of 140 singers.  Marigrace sang under Dr. Judy Bowers, a master teacher who truly understands MS/JH kids!  She is Professor of Choral Music Education at Florida State University.   Marigrace also had the opportunity to meet the composer David Brunner as he visited their Friday rehearsal.  He listened to them perform his piece “Cantate Domino”, participated in a question and answer session with the ensemble, and hand signed each singer’s “Cantate Domino” octavo!
Anna Kasemir (7th grade) was 1 of 18 students chosen to sing in the Treble Honor Choir from TN and 1 of 2 from East TN.  The Treble Honor Choir was comprised of 134 singers.   Anna Kasemir sang under Tom Shelton, a composer-conductor, and sang, “Alleluia,” a piece composed by Mr. Shelton for the ACDA Southern Division Convention  Tom Shelton is an Assistant Professor of Sacred Music at Westminster Choir College where he focuses on children’s and youth music.
St Mary’s School participated in the East Tennessee Vocal Association Honor Choir Event held on November 20-21 in Chattanooga, TN.  This year’s All-East Junior High/Middle School Honor Choir was made up of over 275 advanced 7th & 8th grade vocal students from 29 schools throughout East Tennessee.
music 3Students learned and memorized their voice part on five pieces of music prior to attending the honors chorus. This year’s conductor was Deborah Dunne Sousa, Director of Music at the Episcopal School of Knoxville and Lecturer in Music Education at the University of Tennessee, where she teaches courses in elementary and middle school vocal music methods, supervises field experience and oversees student teachers and interns in elementary and middle school vocal music education.  Congratulations to our 7th and 8th grade students.  Left to Right: Mrs. Carol Villaverde- SMS Music Teacher, McKenna Garibay, Sydney Mesmer, Marigrace Tidwell, Paige Halcrow,  Molly Deinhart, Ethan Sherlock, Joshua Harris, Ian Kilevori, & Anna Kasemir (Not Pictured).

Another Great Year at Regional Science Fair!

The annual St. Mary’s School middle school science fair was held on February 18, 2016.  Projects were divided into two categories, biological and physical sciences.  Awards were determined by an expert panel of judges representing local civic organizations, industry, 2016 SASEF ALLand educational entities.  Fourteen St. Mary’s students received awards making them eligible to compete at the regional Southern Appalachian Science & Engineering Fair (SASEF) at the University of Tennessee on April 5 – 7, 2016.
The SASEF is sponsored by the University of Tennessee and numerous local companies and agencies and draws students from 23 counties in East Tennessee.  The goal of the fair is to promote teaching the scientific method in science, engineering and math.  Over the past 18 years, thirteen St. Mary’s students have been named Grand Champion or Reserve Champion at SASEF.
Thirteen of the St. Mary’s Science Fair winners participated in this year’s SASEF.   St. Mary’s is proud to announce that our students received the following overall awards, certificates of excellence, special awards and honorable mentions:
 Overall Awards:

  • 3rd place– Amelia Van Berkel, “Water, Water Everywhere, but not a Single Drop to Drink”
  • 3rd place– Catelyn Krings, “All the Buzz”
  • 4th place– Anna Kasemir, “World Wide Whisper”
  • 5th place– Ryan Rearden, “”Do You Hear What I Hear?”

Certificates of Excellence: Jacqueline Audet , “Is That Cat Fat?”;  Amelia Van Berkel, “Water, Water Everywhere, but not a Single Drop to Drink”;  Anna Kasemir, “World Wide Whisper”; Catelyn Krings, “All the Buzz”; Sydney Mesmer, “Earth Lovin’ Oven”;  Ryan Rearden, “Do You Hear What I Hear?”; Ashlyn Riikola, “A Stomach’s Worst Enemy”;  Sarah Tackett, “Pearly Whites”
Special Awards:  Amelia Van Berkel, “Water, Water Everywhere, but not a Single Drop to Drink”- Women in GeoSciences, NOAA Taking the Pulse of the Planet, NOAA Local Chapter award;  Anna Kasemir, “World Wide Whisper”- Naval Science Award, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Award; and, Jacqueline Audet , “Is That Cat Fat?”- SASEF Committee Award
Honorable Mentions:  Ryan Audet, “Speed Versus Mass”; Joseph Duhamel, “And the Eye Color Is?”; Mateo Gorrondona, “Can You Keep It a Little Warmer in Here”; Paige Halcrow
, “Bacteria Counts”

Winners Named in SMS Science Fair

Congratulations to our students in grades 6-8 who recently participated in the 2016 St. Mary’s Science Fair on February 18th.  Fifteen of those students received awards for their projects. The winners from each category of Physical and Biological science will attend the Southern Appalachian Science & Engineering Fair (SASEF) at the University of Tennessee in April. We are so proud of the efforts of all of our young scientists!

Physical Science Fair winners (4)

Physical Science Fair Winners


Physical Sciences: 1st Sydney Mesmer, “Earth Lovin’ Oven”; 2nd Amelia Van Berkel, “Water, Water Everywhere, but not a Single Drop to Drink”; 3rd Sarah Tackett, “Pearly Whites”;  4th Ryan Rearden, “Do you hear what I hear?”; 5th Mateo Gorrondona,  “You Keep It a Little Warmer in Here” Honorable Mention:  Anna Kasemir, “World Wide Whisper”; Ryan Audet, “Ball Bearing and Magnets”
Biological Sciences: 1st Catelyn Krings, “All the Buzz”; 2nd Elizabeth Waltman, “Denature or Die: The Importance of Protein Denaturation for OAS sufferers”;  3rd Joseph Duhamel, “And the Eye Color Is?” ; 4th Ashlyn Riikola, “A Stomach’s Worst Enemy”;  5th Jacqueline Audet, “Is that cat fat?”;   Honorable Mention: Elliot Barnes, “Hot or Cold: Left or Right”; Paige Halcrow, “Bacteria Counts”; Emmett Brown, “Acid Rain Hurts”
Biological Science Fair winners (1)

Biological Science Fair Winners