Fine Arts @ DGN Mission

North High School endeavors to provide an enriching, vibrant, multidisciplinary environment for the study, creation, and presentation of the Fine Arts.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

A Night at The Oscars #99Learns #58Learns

The sonic and visual red carpet was rolled out tonight as concert patrons thoroughly enjoyed "A Night at the Oscars," a collaborative performance which featured nearly 250 student musicians from 4 different ensembles.  In addition to performing samples from the scores of 16 different films, the student musicians combined forces for a finale featuring Lalo Schiffrin's timeless theme from Mission:Impossible.  Special thanks to the Herrick Middle School Orchestra, conducted by Todd Schultz, and the O'Neill Middle School Orchestra, conducted by Colleen Eakley, for their work with their contributions to the performance.  "This concert is a perennial favorite of mine." said District 99 Orchestra conductor Jennifer Mullen.  "Being able to see the complete possibility of progress in one night is wonderful."

If you were unable to join us live in the auditorium this evening, or, if you simply wish to re-experience the event, you can watch the replay on the High School Cube by CLICKING HERE.

@dgnbands Welcomes Composer James Stephenson #99Learns

The DGN Wind Ensemble was pleased to welcome composer James Stephenson to campus this afternoon to guest conduct and critique students on their interpretation of his "Concerto for Cell Phone."

The music of Mr. Stephenson will be featured on the November 3 Band Concert, held at 7 PM in the Clarence Johnson Auditorium of North High School.

Tonight: A Night at The Oscars! District 99 Orchestra #99Learns #58Learns @DGDistrict58 @Dist_99

Do you love music of the Cinema?  Don't miss "A Night at The Oscars," starring the District 99 Orchestra, Herrick Middle School Orchestra, and O'Neill Middle School Orchestra.

The concert begins at 7 PM this evening in the Clarence Johnson Auditorium of North High School. This is a free concert with open seating.  Arrive early to get your best look at the stars!

Out of town fans can walk down a virtual Red Carpet, and tune in online to our live stream.  Click here, or on the image above.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

2015 Band-O-Rama #99Learns

Congratulations to the members of the Trojan Marching Band, as well as the Athenas, for their toe-tappin' and crowd-pleasing performances at Band-O-Rama 2015!

A special thank you is extended to the members of the Marching Band Student Leadership Team, the DGN Band Board, and the Auditorium Crew Technicians for transforming the Gym into a dazzling concert hall.

DGN Musicians Earn 60 All-District Honors #99Learns

Student musicians from Downers Grove North High School earned an impressive sixty placements, by competitive audition, to the 2015 Illinois Music Education Association District Band, Choir, Orchestra and Jazz Band. Auditions were held on Tuesday, October 13 at Carl Sandburg High School. The top placing scores were selected for participation in the District Music Festivals, to be held during the month of November.

“Selection to the ILMEA All-District ensembles is a distinct honor for a high school musician,” said Brayer Teague, Fine Arts Department Chairperson. “Our faculty is excited for these students who will now have the opportunity to collaborate with the most outstanding musicians in our region.”

The music faculty, private teachers, and sender school music teachers associated with North High School are proud to congratulate the following students who have earned ILMEA All-District Honors:

Tim Berberich (11) – Tenor I
Elise Cismesia (11) – Soprano I
Keara Corbett (12) – Soprano II
Kileen Dietrich (11) – Alto I
Sarah Durbin (10) – Soprano I
Esther Farley (11) – Alto I
Robert Gartlan (12) –  Tenor II
Benjamin Goedert (11) –  Tenor I
Danielle Gonzales (11) – Alto II
Ethan Kinnear (11) – Bass II
Cecilia Kowara (10) – Soprano I
Jack Langan (10) – Bass I
Lindsey LeBeda (10) – Alto II
Brendan Quealy (10) – Tenor I
Grace Reberg (12) – Soprano I
Sharon Stagman (11) – Soprano II
Frederick Zimmerman (12) –  Bass II

Jack Barkei (11) –  Viola
Josie Bondarowicz (9) – Double Bass
Lucie Boyd (9) – Viola
Kevin Chow (12) – Cello
Tim Edwards (12) –  Cello
Tatiana Jordan (11) –  Violin
Amelia Korbitz (9) – Violin
Parker McGuire (9) – Violin
Bryan Monk (10) – Violin
Matt Monk (12) –  Cello
Liam Morgan (12) –  Cello
Lauren O’Neil (11) – Violin
Abby Pfeiffer (11) – Viola
Ari Scott (12) –  Cello
Amelia Smerz (12) – Cello

David Atwater (11) – French Horn (Band)
Emily Blanchard (10) – Flute (Band)
Daniel Brethauer (11) – Bass Trombone (Band)
Alyse Bondarowicz (12) – Flute (Orchestra)
Jennifer Casey (10) – Euphonium (Band)
Maria D'Ambrose (11) –  Oboe (Orchestra)
Alison Elgass (12) – Bass Clarinet (Band)
Sarah Fantinel (12) – Flute (Orchestra)
Todd Griffin (12) –  Tuba (Orchestra)
Brian Hsu (11) – Trumpet (Band)
Megan Hung (12) –  Bb Clarinet (Orchestra)
Kaylee McCarthy (10) – Trombone (Band)
Brian Perillo (9) – Euphonium (Band)
Caleb Schmurr (11) – Trombone (Orchestra)

Josie Bondarowicz (9) – Double Bass
Daniel Brethauer (11) – Bass Trombone
Ben Cortez (12) – Trumpet
Emily Dwyer (11) – Trumpet
Michael Hardy (12) – Piano
Ryan Knezevich (10) – Trombone
Emily Little (11) – Trombone
Matt McCoy (11) – Alto Sax
Austin Moca (10) – Piano
Vince Rybowiak (12) – Guitar
Caleb Schmurr (11) - Trombone
Amelia Smerz (12) – Trombone
Catherine Smerz (10) – Double Bass
Marz Tingzon (10) – Baritone Sax

Band O Rama Tonight! Live Stream Scheduled

Don't miss the incredible sights and sounds of the DGN Trojan Marching Band in the annual "Band O Rama" concert.  All the excitement kicks-off at 7 PM in the Purple Gym of North High School. The concert is free and open to the public, and will also feature the DGN Athenas Dance Team.

Out of town, and want to catch the live-stream online?  Click here, or go to:

Monday, October 26, 2015

Shoemaker Band Scholarship Fund: Now Accepting Online Donations

Director of Bands at Downers Grove High School from 1929 until 1963, Clarence J. Shoemaker was vitally interested in young people.  He was an exemplary music teacher and band director.  His expertise in the development of musical enjoyment through dedicated participation in the grade school and high school concert and marching band programs was widely acclaimed.  Recognition of achievement by the bands he led included local, state and national awards from his peers.  It is fitting that a memorial to his love for students and musical excellence is established in the form of a scholarship for outstanding instrumentalists who are members of the institution to which he devoted most of his career.

For nearly three decades the CJS Band Scholarship Fund has provided much needed financial support for students from Downes Grove North and Downers Grove South to attend summer music camps.  In reality, these enrichment experiences become central to the success of our bands each year, because each student who attends a summer band camp returns to their respective school and shares their improved skills and enthusiasm with their peers. 

Donate Today!

Are you an alumnus of the Downers Grove North, Downers Grove South, or original Downers Grove High School Band programs? Please consider making a deductible donation to support the Clarence J. Shoemaker Scholarship Fund.  There are two ways to give:

1) Mail a Check!  Click here for a PDF of the donation form.

2) Donate Online with a Credit Card.  Click here to be redirected to the website, and look for the "Donate" button.  

Thank you for your support!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Mr. Voelker Art Educator of the Year (Chicago Tribune October 25, 2015) #99Learns

"Art, not economics, is what inspires Downers Grove North High School teacher Marty Voelker, who is being recognized with a statewide award for transmitting that passion to others."
Click here to read the full story in the Chicago Tribune.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Metal Clay Experience #99Learns

A recent grant from the District 99 Education Foundation provided a memorable series of art workshops focusing on Metal Clay, an art form developed in Japan in the 1990s. Metal Clay consists of microscopic particles of pure silver and a water-soluble binder that burns off during firing.

This two-day educational clinic was led by visiting artist Patricia Weikersheimer, recent President of the Windy City Metal Clay Guild.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Two DGN Artists are Finalists for Illinois Tollway Map Cover Contest. Vote Now! #99Learns

Congratulations to DGN Visual Art students Sophia Di Iorio and Claire Kovarik who are finalists in the Illinois Tollway Map Cover Design Contest.

From the ten finalists, the top four vote-getters will receive a prize, and the Tollway will choose one to be the cover of next year's map, which goes out to over 100,000 people.

How do you vote?!  Click here and select your favorite!  It only takes a few seconds!

Sophia Di Iorio (entry #03)

Claire Kovarik (entry #02)

Thursday, October 22, 2015

"Break A Leg!" #99Learns @DGNorthEnglish

The Fine Arts Department extends all best wishes to the English & Communications Department for a successful Fall Play!

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Cancer Care Center "Thank You" Luncheon #99Learns #99Cares #WeAreDGN

Dear DGN Band members / family:

This afternoon Mr. Miller and I, along with several junior and senior student-leaders, had the honor of facilitating a “thank you lunch” for the Good Samaritan Hospital Cancer Care Center team.  Thanks to YOUR generous donations (as you purchased and wore the pink Brest Cancer Awareness bandanas with voluntary donations), we were able to provide a beautiful meal, catered by the Weber Grill. 

In addition to helping me move tables and chairs to and from the hospital for the lunch, our student leaders wrote and presented personal hand-written thank-you notes to each member of the Cancer Care Team. Each card included a photo of the 2015 Trojan Marching Band with the words “thank you” printed on the side.

I had the privilege of speaking to the entire group for several minutes, and I would like you to know that the physicians, nurses, and clerical personnel were genuinely appreciative (some overwhelmed) by your generosity.  You really lifted their spirits today and affirmed their important work.  

Thank you for being the kind, caring, and compassionate group of young adults that you are. You are “difference makers” in the way you approach philanthropy, and I could not be more proud to be associated with the DGN Band. 

Up next … “The Giving Tree!”

With appreciation, and respect,

Brayer Teague



Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Visual Art students garner awards at the College of DuPage inaugural KickstartShow

Congratulations to DGN Visual Art students and faculty on their recent successes and awards at the College of DuPage inaugural KickstartShow.

Student work was juried by professional artists, and prizes were provided by Blick Art Materials.

The juror's gave recognition to several pieces, which will remain on display at the College of DuPage until the end of the month. DGN students receiving jurors' awards were:

Bridget Shatkus
Andra Jankauskaite
Michelle Chan
Jaida Travascio-Green

Juror's selected two pieces for special recognition and prizes as the "Best in Category", and one piece as piece as "Best in Show".

DGN won 2 of the 3 awards: 

Best 3-D artwork: Bridget Shatkus "Life, Death & Rebirth" (teacher: Amy Bernard)

Best of Show: Andra Jankauskaite "Definitely Desolate" (teacher: Megan Kelly)

DGN Fine Arts congratulates these outstanding Visual Artists - and their mentor teachers - on these successes in the inaugural KickstartShow. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

John C. Svoboda (1921 - 2015) #99Learns

Mr. John C. Svoboda, known by many as "Mr. Music" in Downers Grove, passed away on October 7, 2015. He was 93 years old.

Obituary here.

A 30-year veteran music teacher in the community, Mr. Svoboda's final visit to the orchestra podium was on May 22, 2013 when he conducted the District 99 Orchestra in concert on the South campus (with his grandson, Thomas Svoboda playing string bass in the ensemble). Link here.  

Later, during the same visit, Mr. Svoboda returned to the North campus where he spent much of his teaching career, and reminisced with current teaching faculty about the evolution of the music program in District 99.  Link here.

Mr. Svoboda was considered by all who had the pleasure to work and learn from him to be a true gentleman and consummate professional. His passion for arts education was known throughout the region and his positive influence on the education landscape in the State of Illinois was truly significant.  

The Fine Arts Departments of Downers Grove North and Downers Grove South High Schools join in extending condolences to the Svoboda family, as well as gratitude for John's immeasurable positive impact on District 99 arts education.  

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Alumnus Kristin Bowers to host Recital in DG today!

DGN alumnus Kristin Bowers, Principal Clarinetist of the United States Air Force Band, is teaming with National Symphony Orchestra Oboist Jamie Roberts, to present a free local concert. The recital will take place tonight at 5 pm in the sanctuary of Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, right across the street from North High.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

2015 Crosstown Classic #99Learns

Congratulations to the students and staff affiliated with the Trojan Marching Band, the Athenas, the Marching Mustangs, and the Fillies, for their presence and participation at the 2015 Crosstown Classic this evening. Kudos also the the members of the choral programs from both campuses who participated by leading the crowd in attendance in the singing of our National Anthem.

The Trojan Marching Band extends thanks to the DGS Fine Arts Department and the DGS Band Boosters for their hospitality and support with travel logistics.