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SHS Orchestra Explores Austria and Hungary

Photo+Credits+to+Katelin+%2719
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SHS Orchestra Explores Austria and Hungary

Photo Credits to Katelin '19

Photo Credits to Katelin '19

Photo Credits to Katelin '19

Photo Credits to Katelin '19

Lilac Lin

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Credit: Jackie Lu ’22

Shouts of exaltation filled each classroom of SHS as the final bell of the day rang, marking the end of the school day and the beginning of February break. While most students were busy bursting out the front doors of the high school, the orchestra had already begun their 8-day performance tour of Austria and Hungary, shortly arriving in Berchtesgaden, a German town famous for its ski resorts, mountains, and surprisingly, salt!

 

Saturday, February 16: 

Whoosh! The orchestra tour kicked off their journey by descending, in groups of three, 130 meters below sea level on steep, wooden slides. Their destination, Berchtesgaden National Park’s Salt Mine, has been open for over 500 years. Almost immediately after they entered, in order to get into the right mindset, students took a group photo in miner suits and watched a short clip on the history of the mine. “They converted the inside of the salt mine into a museum and took out certain areas of the cave to show the actual machinery,” Anika Argarwal ’19 explained. How did she know this? As the group toured the dimly lit cavern on a train, a tour guide accompanied them and answered all of their questions. “The walls were so close on each side that you could touch them,” Joanna Wang ’21 said. Plus, since the walls were so close, students were even able to lick the walls and taste the salt, although it was probably not encouraged. Next time you’re in Berchtesgaden, be sure to stop by for an adventure worth your salt.

Credit: Caitlin Du ’19

Monday, February 18: 

Your hand creeps closer and closer to the painting of waterlilies until it just grazes its surface. A few seconds later, an employee impatiently reminds you that if you want to set foot in any museum again, you must only look at exhibits and not touch them. The Haus der Musik, House of Music, is the only interactive sound museum in the world. “There were a lot of computer simulations where we could put on headphones, and it would teach you, ” Derek Chi ’19 said. In this museum, students were allowed to touch and explore the different exhibits in order to learn about the components of sound. “On each of the four floors, they showcase different aspects of sound and music,” explained Argarwal ’19. The highlight for many students was the first floor, which allowed people to virtually conduct the Vienna Philharmonic. The second floor was dedicated to all types of sound, even those simulating the inside of a mother’s womb, and the other two had to do with famous composers and multimedia content. Aside from being famous for its traditions and cozy coffeehouses, Vienna has also been known as the center of music because it is the city in which famous composers, such as Mozart and Beethoven, once lived. A unique and rare experience, the Haus der Musik is an imperative stop for all fans of classical music who happen to be in Austria.

Credit: Joanna Wang ’21

Wednesday, February 20th:

“I fell on my butt, but it was the best part by far. Everyone had a fun time,” said Joanna Wang ’21. What was she talking about? The largest and one of the oldest of its kind in Europe, the versatile City Park Ice Rink in Budapest offers boat rides in the summer and a venue for skating and partying in the winter. The park provides skates for rent and offers lessons, but there are no handrails around the rink to grab onto, so falling may be a given for beginners. With the breathtaking view of the Vajdahunyad Castle in the background and Scarsdale High School students struggling to stand up after falling, it is no wonder that this experience was so enjoyable for many students. Even Amédée Williams, the orchestra director at Scarsdale High School for nearly twelve years, admitted that ice skating in Budapest was one of his favorite parts of the trip.

Credit: Katelin Du ’19

Overall, although the schedule was a little tight, the orchestra trip was once again successful in meeting the high expectations of Scarsdale High School students and their vacations. Even though they were a large, jet-lagged group of kids, there was no complaining and everyone had a good time.

Want to learn even more about the orchestra’s experience in Austria and Hungary? Here’s Katelin Du ’19’s vlog of the trip:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Ervru7EjLHPs1MDbputE9-L0fPLp13Bh/view?usp=sharing 

 

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