Harvard-Westlake Participates in CAIS Honors Music Festival


Alice Lee

Instrumentalists get ready for rehearsal after dinner.

Alice Lee, Reporter

Singers and instrumentalists in grades 8-12 from Harvard-Westlake boarded the bus to participate in the CAIS Honors Music Festival on Feb. 3. Held at Viewpoint School every year, the California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS) Honors Music Festival spends two days uniting musicians from different schools to participate in the orchestra, choir or band. This year, 20 schools participated with a total of 230 students performing.

Months in advance, music directors from different schools hand-picked their most versatile and capable students to attend the festival. Although some students had to decline the offer, students who gained access to the music straight after accepting the invitation. 

In preparation for this event, these talented instrumentalists and singers spent many hours on Friday, Feb. 3 and Saturday, Feb. 4 practicing their repertoire for the choir concert at 3:30 p.m. and the instrumental concert at 5 p.m. that same day. 

Elizabeth Hayden, a 9th grader from Crossroads School, says she enjoyed the experience.

“CAIS orchestra was a very positive experience for me as a violist,” Hayden said. “It has been a few years since I’ve played with this many violists.” 

The CAIS orchestra has brought many people together, which is important as our community had been in a temporary rest for a long while because of the pandemic. This is one of the many steps striving for the LA community to come together through the bond of music. 

Similarly, Charlotte Im ’27 agrees that participating in the CAIS orchestra led to many interactions and bonds with people from different schools.

“I thought it was a nice experience because I was able to play with people I don’t usually play music with,” Im said. “The whole preparation and actually playing the concert (in 26 hours!) was definitely something.”