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Shelby High Chamber Orchestra delivers halftime performance at Panthers football game

posted Dec 22, 2014, 1:54 PM by Greg Shull   [ updated Dec 22, 2014, 2:02 PM ]
The Shelby High School Chamber Orchestra, led by Director John Champney, took the field during halftime of the Carolina Panthers versus Cleveland Browns football game on December 21st delivering a holiday performance like no other.

Accompanied by PurrCussion, the Carolina Panthers drumline, the orchestra performed a Trans-Siberian Orchestra medley arranged by John Champney.

“We have had some incredible experiences with the orchestra at Shelby High, but there is not much that could ever top playing for an audience of over 70,000 at an NFL game,” said Champney. “It is always great to see student musicians truly giving their all to the performance while smiling the whole time.”

Champney added, “The entire concept of the halftime show was out of the ordinary with a string orchestra coming together with a drumline for a performance. All I can say is that it worked extremely well, and we delivered holiday spirit while the Panthers delivered a victory.”

In preparation for the halftime performance, the orchestra and drumline rehearsed separately during until the week of the game. To help ensure a smooth experience for the orchestra and fans attending the game, the Carolina Panthers brought PurrCussion to Shelby High for a full dress rehearsal in Malcolm Brown Auditorium the Tuesday prior to the game.

“When we realized the opportunity to unite these two extraordinary groups of musicians for our holiday halftime show, everyone jumped at it,” said Kate Milstead of the Carolina Panthers. “The ability to incorporate such a unique, but incredibly recognizable seasonal sound was a perfect fit!” 

Milstead also said, “The Shelby High School Orchestra is such a deserving group of musicians. John and his students were such a pleasure to work with and the on-field halftime show was absolutely amazing!”

The following information about the Shelby High Orchestra was included in the GameTime booklet for fans attending the game:

For 40 years, the Shelby High School Orchestra has upheld a tradition of excellence and has been selected twice to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Shelby High School Orchestra has also performed at the Strathmore Center in Washington, D.C. as part of the Heritage Festival of Gold and performed with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s electric violinist, Mark Wood. Wood has used Shelby High School Orchestra in his advertising for the American String Teachers Association and composed a piece specifically for the ensemble. Hosting Wood as well as the residency of several other world-class musicians, Shelby High School Orchestra prides itself on offering an education in both traditional and contemporary music and fostering orchestra students who are recognized at the regional and state levels year after year.

About PurrCussion
The Carolina Panthers drumline, PurrCussion, is at every home game as they perform for fans outside Bank of America Stadium, introduce Panthers players before the game, rally the crowd during the game and much more! PurrCussion features a combination of groove, chops, visuals, choreography and dynamics, making them enjoyable to fans of all ages. The high energy ensemble brings instant atmosphere to the game day experience as well as at community and corporate events throughout the year.