COLLEGE STATION, Texas — From B-CS to NYC, College Station High School’s Varsity Orchestra is set to perform at one of the biggest stages in The Big Apple — Carnegie Hall.
The Cougar Varsity Orchestra is busy at work putting the finishing touches to their performing before heading off to New York next week.
Orchestra Director Jason Hooper said the student’s drive to stay competitive is a quality that has brought them so far.
“We have a great orchestra program," Hooper said. "I just love beating bigger high schools like Plano West and when other schools don’t think much of us because of where we are. I personally just enjoy those victories even more.”
Through much fundraising in 2022, the orchestra raised more than $75,000 just to get there.
They will be returning for their third time in a few years.
Hooper said it is the culmination of not just his leadership but his student’s passion to be the best.
“This is kind of like our Super Bowl, I mean, where could we go from here? Beyond playing Carnegie Hall, what else could we do? So yes, this is like the pinnacle of orchestra success,” he said.
And it’s not just Hooper that’s excited, but his students are ready to pack up and play on the big stage.
Angelina Lopez, a senior and president of Varsity Orchestra, said this is one of the great ways to remember her senior year — especially having a solo in front of the hundreds in attendance.
“I’m very excited because I’m going to sit first-chair because that is a crazy honor in itself," Lopez said. "I’m also ready to feel the energy in there. It’s going to be different — and it’s going to be good.”
Dominic Motekaitis, also a senior varsity player, said he’s worked hard for four years for a moment like this.
“I remember back in 8th grade, it was the varsity orchestra that inspired me," Motekaitis said. "They played ‘Vivaldi Concerto 580’ or something, and it was such a beautiful piece. It inspired me to work hard, work harder on my violin and I always thought “how cool would it be if i got to play Carnegie Hall?” It feels incredible.”