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Home | Tag Archives: hornedo middle school

Tag Archives: hornedo middle school

Hornedo Middle School Choir Seeking Help to Get to Carnegie Hall

Hornedo Middle School choir knows exactly how to get to Carnegie Hall: get noticed on YouTube, practice … and fundraise, fundraise, fundraise.

The Distinguished Concerts Singers International (DCINY) selected the choir to perform among students from throughout the world on June 24 at Carnegie Hall to sing a newly commissioned work for Treble and Youth Voices. The 40 choir students are $80,000 shy of their $120,000 goal to sing at the prestigious concert hall.

“We are very excited to go perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City with choristers from around the world,” said director Jessica Barney. “I feel honored and so thankful that my students will get this once in a lifetime opportunity. I have never been to New York City, yet alone perform at Carnegie Hall. This is an amazing accomplishment, and I feel so blessed.”

Representatives from the DCINY contacted Barney after seeing on YouTube an a cappella performance from their last year’s concert and asked them to submit an audition tape.

“The Hornedo Middle School choir received this invitation because of the quality and high level of musicianship demonstrated by the singers as well as the exceptional quality of their audition recording,” said Dr. Johnathan Griffin, artistic director and principal conductor for DCINY. “It is quite an honor just to be invited to perform in New York. These wonderful musicians not only represent a high quality of music and education, but they also become ambassadors for the entire community. This is an event of extreme pride for everybody and deserving of the community’s recognition and support.”

Eighth-grader MacKenzie Block called the trip to New York an “amazing, one in a lifetime opportunity.”

“We’re preparing by doing lots of before school practices and fundraisers and lots and lots of hard work on our part and Ms. Barney’s,” she said.

The choir will spend five days in New York City, balancing their time between rehearsals and sightseeing.

“I’m really excited and happy we get to do this,” said eighth-grader Jose Escoto, an 8th grader. “Not every middle school gets to do something amazing like this, to go to New York to do what we all love – choir and singing. It’s a passion and a dream come true.”

The choir has been working with the El Paso Community Foundation to raise money for the trip. Anyone interested in making a contribution can donate online.

“We have raised about $40,000.00,” Barney said. “It’s a chunk but we still have a ways to go.”

Author – Reneé de Santos  |  Photos by Leonel Monroy

Hornedo Students help out El Paso Children in Need

Hornedo Middle School students and volunteers throughout the nation opened their hearts and pocketbooks on National Make a Difference Day to help those in need.

The Hornedo Student Council banded together to make 30 tote bags filled stuffed animals, crayon, coloring books, blankets and toiletries for children at the Lee and Beulah Moor Children’s Home.

“We came up with the project after we heard that when children show up at the home, it is usually with their belongings in a trash bag and that is if they have belongings at all,” StuCo president Eleanor Schoenbrun said.

news2_2577_mIt took two months for the students at Hornedo to plan and get all the supplies needed to make the bags. The students ordered bags from the non-profit organization Together We Rise.

“Through a $500 grant from generationOn, we were able to contribute to No Excuses University and get all the things we needed for the bags,” Schoenbrun said.

Teacher and StuCo sponsor Bobbi Wilts was proud to see his students spearhead such a great project and learn the importance of helping others.

“It was very heartwarming,” Wilts said. “It really taught the students sensitivity to the community’s needs.”

The students enjoyed giving back and being able to make a difference in the lives of other children.

“I feel it is important that as the next generation and leaders of our school, we help those less fortunate than us,” Schoenbrun said. “I always have implored that even the smallest person can make the biggest difference.”

Hornedo Students Create Best Video Game in Texas

A video game designed by three Hornedo Middle School seventh graders earned first place in Video Game Design at the state Technology Student Association Competition and Conference last month in Waco.

The seventh graders – Ahmad Aldasouqi, Giancarlo Gonzalez and Andres Iglesias – earned top honors with their game VAST, created for elementary-aged students. VAST takes gamers to space, navigating through obstacle courses and mazes with an action-packed story featuring some plot twist and turns.

“I think our story was more in depth and had more of a cinematic feel,” said Aldasouqi, who worked on the programming aspect of the game. “I know how hard it is to make games so I appreciate them more.”

Gonzalez took on the documentation and the storyline. He and his teammates all started playing video games as preschoolers.

“I thought it would be great if I could make games that I could play,” Gonzalez said. “Video games give you a place to escape stress and reality.”

Iglesias focused on the artwork, which featured a spaceman, a planet, volcano and the famous Hollywood sign. He has been playing video games since he was 4.

“I liked it a lot but I’m probably biased,” he said, smiling. “We had family and friends play it for constructive criticism to improve it.”

Iglesias, Quinn Beeson and David Duru also won second place in the Tech Bowl category at the state competition.

Hornedo also received sixth place in the Inventions and Innovations category with a team comprised of Emily Do, Aurora Holt and Teresa Moreno.

Tech teacher Mike Quarles credits the success of the Hornedo Tech Club to the enthusiasm and dedication of his students, who come nearly every day after school to play and design video games. His students have earned Best in State for six of the last seven years.

“We’re sort of a dynasty,” Quarles said.

He opens his computer lab four days a week before and after school, providing Tech Club students an open work place to try gaming and creating using specific gaming software. Students work together and independently learning to incorporate music, video, graphics and animation into their creations.

“I give them a little push and the rest is on them and what they are curious about,” Quarles said. “I encourage them to build something they can share with their contemporaries.”

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