Lamar High Jazz Band Receives Top Ratings
The Lamar High School Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of Richard Smith, received a First Division Rating in the 2004 Solo & Ensemble
Competition recently held at Nimitz High School. The Saxophone Quartet, and Baritone Saxophone soloist Daniel Kirksey will be performing at the state competition in Austin in May.
Trumpet soloist Amanda Ramirez also received a Second Division rating. In addition, the Lamar Jazz Ensemble took First Place and a First Division rating at the 2004 West District Jazz
Festival held on March 6th. Three soloist awards were awarded to Brandon Allen, Ben Bohorquez, and Abye Osman.
The Jazz Ensemble includes: Saxophonists;Abye Osman, Eric Jimenez, Ben
Bohorquez, Colin Renner, Daniel Kirksey; Trombonist: Santo Endieveri, Palmer Mena, Chris Rodriguez;
Trumpeters: James Viebrock, Amanda Ramirez, Alex Folts; Pianist: Brandon Allen,
Guitarist: Dylan Leach; Bassist: Marcus Whitt; Drummer; Ibrahim Kanu
Saxophone Quartet: Abye Osman, Eric Jimenez, Ben Bohorquez, and Jake Vasquez; Baritone Saxophone soloist: Daniel Kirksey; Trumpet soloist: Amanda Ramirez
Greek Exchange Students Help Groom
Lamar High School's Rodeo Livestock
Four Greek exchange students
from the American Farm School, located in Northern Greece, visited Lamar's
FFA class on March 8, 2004 and helped groom Natalie, one of Lamar's
livestock, for exhibit at the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo. The exchange
program, underwritten by the American Farm School and Houston Livestock
Show & Rodeo International Committee, introduces students to agricultural
practices employed in various countries. This summer, Lamar student Holly
Leifeste will travel to the American Farm School in Greece to learn about
farming methodology there.
The Greek exchange students'
10-day stay in Houston entailed visits to the Houston Livestock Show and
Texas A & M and Prairie View A
& M. The American Farm School, a landmark in Greek and Balkan history, is
now one of the world's leading agricultural institutions. It is the center
for cultural and international collaboration, a leader of educational
innovation, and a working farm with facilities for livestock and crop
Lamar High School Announces 2004 Teacher of the Year
Congratulations to Lamar's 2004 Teacher of the Year... Mr. Ted Williams!
Shown in picture l - r Ted Williams Jr., Ted Williams Sr.,and principal Dr. James McSwain
Lamar High School recently announced Ted Williams as the 2004 Teacher of the Year. Williams has been an educator for 33 years, twelve of
those have been at Lamar High School where he currently teaches physical education and health. In addition to his teaching duties, Williams holds the position of the Physical Education
and Health Department chairman and coaches football at Lamar. He was recently selected as an International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program teacher trainer for physical education and
is the Coordinator of the Business Initiative. His passion for education extends into the summer months, as he is the Director of the Lamar Summer Sports and Enrichment Camp, which is
held at Lamar High School. Williams prides himself on teaching his students to be successful both in and outside the classroom. "My philosophy on education is really every simple. I
believe the student is at the center of learning. My job is to prepare students for a changing 21st century. Students should focus on intercultural learning and should be encouraged to
be life-long, holistic learners who can effectively communicate," said Williams.
Lamar High School Recognized for Yearbook Excellence
The Lamar High
School Orenda yearbook
staff has been recognized by Taylor Publishing Company, a major publisher
of yearbooks nationwide and industry’s technology leader in digital
innovation, with an Award of Excellence honoring its accomplishments in
yearbook design and coverage. The Lamar High School
Orenda yearbook is featured in
Taylor Publishing’s 2004 Yearbook
Yearbook. Judges selected the Lamar High School
Orenda yearbook as among the
best. The adviser of the Lamar Orenda yearbook is Ms. Charlene Merchant.
“Taylor Publishing’s Yearbook
Yearbook is the premier yearbook-specific design annual,” said Clif
Palmberg, Yearbook Yearbook editor. “Across the country, thousands of
yearbook advisers, editors, and designers use this publication for design
ideas. The schools featured are some of the trend-setters of the
Yearbooks published by Taylor
for the 2002-2003 school year were evaluated for excellence in one or more
of the following areas: cover design, theme development and page design.
Taylor Publishing recognizes only the top five percent of yearbook staffs
for outstanding yearbook achievement. “The Award of Excellence is given
each year to a small percentage of yearbook staffs nationwide that
demonstrate excellence in yearbook creation, “said Mike Taylor, marketing
manager at Taylor Publishing. “We applaud the Lamar staff for their
outstanding work and support their efforts in scholastic journalism.”
Lamar Orchestra Wins 31 Medals at UIL Solo and Ensemble Competition
Lamar High School Orchestra students carried home 31 medals today from UIL Solo and Ensemble Competition held at York Junior High School in
Conroe ISD. Twenty six Lamar students earned the gold medal, six students earned the silver medal and two students earned the bronze medal for superior performance on prepared solo
works for their respective instruments. Of the twenty six students who earned the gold medal, ten of these earned the right to compete at the State level in Austin during the last
weekend in May 2004. Students who earn a gold medal at State level competition will receive $500 scholarships toward tuition and fees,should they decide to matriculate at the
University of Texas at Austin.
UIL Solo and Ensemble Competition challenges students to polish a piece of music to the highest level and perform it with piano accompaniment
before a UIL judge who is chosen for his or her expertise in this field. Learning and polishing a piece to this level of perfection requires a great deal of maturity and commitment
from the students. Gold medals are awarded to students who receive a "Superior" rating on a piece of the highest level of difficulty, silver to superior ratings on a piece of
medium difficulty, and bronze medals to students who receive the superior rating on music of the easiest caliber.
Gold medallists who have also gone above and beyond expectations by performing their music entirely from memory earn the right to advance to
State level competition as outlined above. These students deserve extraordinary recognition for their achievement. The Lamar students who earned this right are:
Steven Booker, grade 9, Neha Casturi, grade 9, Stacy Eriksson, grade 11, Leslie Galeas, grade 9, Lauren Ibarra, grade 9, Jacob karesh, grade 11,
Gabriel Medina, grade 9, Marcella Nguyen, grade 10, Nastasja Palka, grade 12, and Cindy Whang, grade 9.
Other gold medallists include: Sommer Anderson, grade 11, Cassandra Arellano, grade 10, James Booser, grade 10, Paul Heideman, grade 12, Brandi
Mirzakhani, grade 11, John Pavlick, grade 10, Laura Slack, grade 11, Lawrence Wampler, grade 12, Alexandra Weise, grade 11, Leah Spurling, grade 12, Stephanie Greenfield, grade 12, Jennifer Wang, grade 12, and Clara Wilder, grade 9.
Silver medallists were:Anna Jackura, grade 9, Sian Leach, grade 9, Karen Springer, grade 9, Justin Iglehart, grade 12,Luan York, grade 11,
Alexander Sereni, grade 9
Bronze medallists were: Michelle Ebrahimi, grade 9 and Aixa Lopez, grade 9
The Lamar Orchestra is directed by Mr. Michael Fahey.
TOMMY TUNE Takes Lamar High School
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Thursday night, February
12, 2004, was a magical night at Lamar High School. Nine-time Tony Award
winner Tommy Tune, Class of 1957, returned to his home stage and gave an
incredible performance in honor of his beloved teacher and mentor, Mrs.
Denney. Tune was thrilled and energized to be back on his home stage, as he
performed songs written by Gershwin, Rogers and Hammerstein, and Fred
Astaire. Tommy Tune and the Manhattan Rhythm Kings filled the stage and the
auditorium with laughter and delight. The audience of friends, classmates,
teachers, and current students were overwhelmed and left the event singing
and tapping their toes.
Foxworth, Jaclyn Smith, and Betty Baird, were there in person to help
celebrate Mrs. Denney’s 90th birthday. Several of Denney’s
former students were there via video technology- to tell her how much they
appreciated what she had done for them. Paula Prentiss, Tommy Sands, Carlin
Glynn Masterson, Shelby Bryan, and Melendy Britt, told wonderful stories and
Lilli Tomlin even put in a special appearance.
The event was the kick off of an effort to raise $1.5 million to renovate
the auditorium in which all of these stars got their start. The one night
only event raised $240,000 – a great first step! There are still
opportunities to purchase a special chair in the new auditorium in honor of
a spouse, friend, teacher, or self. Anyone interested in purchasing a chair
or making a donation should contact Fran Callahan at 713/522-5960 ext. 359
Wells Fargo Sponsors New Scoreboard for Lamar Gym
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Thanks to our business partners, Wells Fargo, Lamar now has two new scoreboards in the gymnasium. A Scoreboard
Dedication Ceremony was held on February 10, 2004 and Wells Fargo representative Roy Simone was present to receive the honors. Special thanks to Lamar parents Mr. Herb Holland and Mr.
Bill Padgett for spearheading the project.
Lamar High School Football Players Sign on National Signing Day
Shown from l-r: Avery Williams,Tulane University; Bencil Smith, Rice
University; Andrew Kelson, University of Texas; and Brian Orakpo, University of Texas.
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Four Lamar High School senior football players signed with their perspective
colleges on National Signing Day held on February 4, 2004. The players include Andrew Kelson, who will attend
the University of Texas and will major in industrial engineering; Brian Orakpo, who will also attend
University of Texas; Bencil Smith will attend Rice University and plans to major in managerial studies; and
Avery Williams will attend Tulane University, where he will major in political science.
Student Places In The Texas All-State Choir!
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Lamar High School student Steffan Mena, a senior, has been
selected over 20,000 singers in the state who auditioned to earn a chair in
the 2004 Texas All-State Choir. Students making the All-State Choir went
through a process of auditioning four times before the final audition, which
would determine who would earn a chair in the 2004 Texas All-State Choir.
Mena’s final audition took place on Saturday, January 10, 2004 at the Area D
choir auditions, hosted at The Woodlands High School, McCullough campus.
will travel to San Antonio February11- 14th, where he will rehearse and
perform at the annual Texas Music Educator’s Association (TMEA) convention.
Lamar is one of two
schools in HISD to have students making it to the final round of auditions
and selected to participate in the All State-State Choir!
Lamar Senior Wins First Place In Texas Playwriting Competition
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Lamar High School Senior, John Hawthorne Smith, wrote a play that the
Texas Educational Theatre Association granted first place. His play, Checkmate will
be performed downtown at the annual TETA conference later this month. However, Lamar High School has the privilege of an exclusive preview performance.
Smith’s groundbreaking play is a story of defeat, betrayal, and intrigue in the Napoleonic era. See a dramatic story unfold through a game of
chess that may well be the Emperor’s last. This provocative new theatrical experience will be performed in the
Lamar theater on January 21 at 7:30. Tickets are available for advance sale in the theater for four dollars, but will be five at the door.
"Player of the Year"
Congratulations to senior Andrew Kelson (shown left) for
being named the Houston Chronicle "Player of the Year" and on being named a
member of the Houston Chronicle All Greater Houston Football Team. Kelson, a
magnet student, was also nominated for the 2003 Touch Down Club's "Defensive
Player of the Year." He will attend UT in fall 2004 and plans to major in
Undustrial Engineering. Congratulations also to senior Brian Orakpo, a
magnet student, for also being named a member of the Houston Chronicle All
Greater Houston Football Team. Orakpo plans to attend UT in fall 2004.
Lamar High School IB Staff Leads the Way
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Lamar High School administration recently announced that four Lamar staff members have been selected by the
International Baccalaureate North America (IBNA) to lead training to future International Baccalaureate (IB) staff and faculty across the North America region. The selected Lamar group
includes Jon Mallam, IB Coordinator; Mary Ellen Wolf, IB Middle Years Program Coordinator; Paula Cox, IB Counselor; and Ted Williams, P.E. Department Chair and teacher. Lamar’s staff
was selected from over 1000 applicants from across the North America region and will be sent to Vancouver BC, Canada in February 2004 to prepare for their new leader training
assignment. Lamar High School currently leads Texas in the highest number of IB examinations administered and is listed 7 in the nation and 13 across the globe in the number of IB
examinations taken by IB students. Thirty-eight 2003 Lamar graduates received the IB diploma, and presently, 70 seniors in the 2004 Lamar graduating class are declared as IB
Lamar Orchestra Students Receive Top Honors
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Eleven Lamar High School Orchestra students have won
coveted spots in the 2003 Texas Music Educator's Association Region 9 Honor
Orchestra. These students won these positions based upon competitive
auditions held Monday, October 20 in the Klein Independent School District.
Nearly four hundred students auditioned for these positions, thus selection
is highly competitive and a great honor. These students will participate in
another round of auditions on November 1, 2003 which will determine their
chair placement within each of their respective organizations. The final
clinic and concert will take place on Friday and Saturday November 21st and
22nd at Klein Forest High School. These students will have the honor of
rehearsing and performing with the very best students from all of our Region
9 schools and will be conducted by nationally and internationally known
conductors. The students who achieved these honors are:
Region 9 Symphony Orchestra:
Forrestine Dickson 11th grader,
cello; Stacey Eriksson, 11th and
Lauren Ibarra 9th graders, violins.
Region 9 Philharmonic:
|Paul Heideman, 12th,
Christopher Howdeshell-Bogert, 9th
Brandi Mirzakhani, 11th
Marcella Nguyen, 10th
John Pavlick, 10th
Karen Springer, 9th
|Leah Spurling, 12th
| Jennifer Wang, 12th
|Neha Casturi, 9th, viola;
and Laura Slack, 10th, violin