Article: Bellbrook Middle School Bands Debut 2 New Songs

Bellbrook Middle School Bands Debut 2 New Songs

Posted Tuesday, May 7, 2024
The Bellbrook Middle School 7th and 8th grade bands debuted two new songs on Monday night, thanks to a consortium agreement.

Because of the agreement, Bellbrook bands have access to music that hasn’t yet been played in public and the middle school was part of a world premiere for the songs “Scream” and “Stay,” both of which deal with mental health. Both songs are part of the unBroken project. 

According to composer Randall Standridge, “the unBroken project began with the composition of unBroken. The work was my first to deal with mental health struggles, and inspired by its reception, I have created a series of works … to use as conversational starting points for these issues.”

Seventh grade band director Andy Soloman said that "Scream" is “about living in the moment and when you do, finding that the moment passes and there is a brighter side on the other end of it.”

The song gets its title from the music itself in which the musicians scream at different points during the song. The band also put a new instrument into place, the Aztec Death Whistle.

“It’s really cool that we get to be part of bringing this piece to life,” Soloman said. 

Solomon also gave a nod to the administration and guidance department at the middle school for speaking to the students about mental health and their support for the students.

The 8th grade band performed “Stay,” which Standridge said was inspired by the back of a T-shirt. 

“On a trip in 2023, I read the following on the back of a T-shirt: ‘Hey, you, the one reading this. The world is better with you in it,’” Standridge said. “That had a profound impact on me and I decided to put those feelings into music.” 

The piece is intended to be an anthem of hope, love and understanding for those who find it challenging to go on in the face of adversity and for those who sometimes feel that the weight of the world is too much to bear.
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