Loveland student hopes to perform his music in Australia
Cort Roberts and friends will hold fundraiser
By Shelley Widhalm Reporter-Herald Staff Writer
Posted: 03/12/2012 06:57:10 PM MDT
Loveland High School junior Cort Roberts, 17, right, and senior Ian Collett, 17, play French horns during wind symphony class Thursday in the school's auditorium. ( Steve Stoner )
If You Go
What: The French Horn Benefit Concert by Cort Roberts and Friends.
When: 3 p.m. Sunday, March 25.
Where: LifeSpring Covenant Church, 743 Dotsero Drive.
Includes: Coffee and dessert reception.
To donate: Go to http://gofundme.com/9tmoc.
Loveland High School student Cort Roberts wants to go down under to play a little French horn, but to get there, he needs to up the ante on fundraising.
The 17-year-old junior is one of 10 U.S. high school students invited to join Australian students who will be rehearsing and performing at the Conservatorium Theatre in South Bank in Brisbane, Australia.
Roberts needs to raise $3,500 to be able to travel to and participate in the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University Pacific Honours Ensemble Program in late September.
"I think it's a once-in-a-lifetime experience," Roberts said. "It's exciting to perform what I love doing with people from around the world."
Roberts is holding the French Horn Benefit Concert, by Cort Roberts and Friends, on Sunday, March 25, at LifeSpring Covenant Church. He and his friends, including members of a horn quartet and a brass quintet, will play selections from Mozart's Horn Concerto No. 3 in Eb Major and an arrangement he has prepared.
A trumpet, piano and ukulele player, Roberts will play a few ukulele selections with two other ukulele players and a piano duet with his mother, Carlene Roberts.
"I thought it would be really cool to raise money for this trip I'm going on by doing what I'm going to be doing," Roberts said. "In other words, I'm raising money to show my musicality to excel my musicality."
The reciprocal exchange between Griffith University and the Western International Band Clinic, which Roberts has attended for the past three years, is in its fifth year. Ten students from the 600 who attended the Western International Band Clinic in November 2011 are invited to perform with the Pacific Honours Ensemble Program this year. Ten students from Australia performed at the clinic in Seattle, Wash.
The two groups of students will work under the direction of eminent national and international conductors during the four-day program that culminates with two gala concerts. The rehearsals will be Sept. 27-29 with the concerts on Sept. 30.
"We open our doors to find young musicians from across the Pacific to come and share our music in Brisbane and the Queensland Conservatorium," said Ralph Hultgren, the artistic director for the program and an Australian composer and conductor, according to a press statement.
Roberts expects that he will learn Australian musical terms and how musicians there approach music.
"They have a whole different take on the interpretation of music," Roberts said. "This will add a whole new perspective to my musical intellect."
Roberts first started playing the French horn in the sixth grade but did not become serious until he was a ninth-grader, when he noted the level of competitiveness in the Loveland High School band program, he said.
"That's when it became real to me what we were doing," Roberts said, adding that the horn is the most technically difficult instrument to play.
Roberts joined the Loveland High School Wind Symphony, the highest level of band at the school, in ninth grade and now is principal, or first chair. He plays in the school's jazz band and orchestra and has been in several honor bands, including those for Colorado State University and the University of Colorado, the Northern Colorado Honor Band and the All-State Honor Band.
"As a musician, it's fun to see him have a passion for something I love," said Carlene Roberts, a piano teacher. "He's exceeded my expectations."
After college, Roberts hopes to play in a symphony orchestra, he said.
"He's worked hard for everything he's done. We're extremely proud of that," Carlene Roberts said.