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PPS Student Orchestra Serenades New U.S. Citizens

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PPS Student Orchestra Serenades New U.S. Citizens
Posted on 09/22/2015
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The Portland Public Schools’ "Gig" Orchestra, a group of student musicians that performs as a community outreach group, gave an "outstanding" performance for some new U.S. citizens at a Citizenship Ceremony at the University of Southern Maine’s Abromson Center's Hannaford Hall on Sept. 17.

Three judges presided as 90 people from 41 different countries became citizens, according to Julianne Eberl, district orchestra teacher. She said the hall was packed with the new citizens and their families and friends.

“The students gave an outstanding performance,” Eberl said. “They played background music for about 30 minutes as the families arrived, and then played two patriotic pieces when the citizens were sworn in. There was a reception afterwards, and the students received thanks and appreciation from many of the guests.”

The students performing were from Deering, Portland and Casco Bay high schools. The performers were: Peter Gribizis, concertmaster, PHS; Priscilla Maccario, assistant concertmaster, DHS; Francesca Houran, violin, CBHS; Lucas Jasonides, violin, DHS; Lucy Tumavicus, viola, DHS; Julia Lancia, viola, DHS; Owen Ganter, cello, DHS; Iris Walter, cello, PHS; and Anne Dodson, cello, CBHS.

To help more students play, the Portland Public Schools is in need of more instruments, Eberl said. She said 10 violins and three violas are needed at King Middle School; three violins and one viola at Lyman Moore Middle School; and four violins are needed at Lincoln Middle School. Anyone who wants to help by donating instruments or the funds to buy them should contact Julianne Eberl at eberlj@portlandschools.org.