HWS Premieres New Student Work

Life is sweet when one of your dreams come true! In their February 25th concert entitled “Childrens Dreams,” the Hanover Wind Symphony (HWS) premiered a new student work by Hopatcong High School senior Gregory Smith, who has been a member of their audience for the past ten years.


“Sledding” is one of the steps that Gregory hopes will lead him to a career in film composition. “It tells the story of a young child sledding down a hill. At first it’s kind of rough with snow and ice thrown at his face. Then as soon as he gets the hang of it, he hits the bottom of the hill abruptly. So, he marches his way back up the hill and sees other people sledding down the hill and gets very excited. When he gets to the top, he takes one deep breath, and jumps back down.”


Gregory started composing over two years ago with works for quartet, jazz band, and  symphonic wind band. Like his father, he plays the trumpet, and taught himself piano as a means to compose. He sees film music as part of the scenery, painting pictures with notes. So when he writes, he wants to understand the timbre and range of each instrument. Working with the HWS helped him tweak his composition as he could see and hear how the parts all work together – much different than listening to a computer generated rendition. “I couldn’t have asked for a better first concert [of “Sledding”].” He had an overall feeling of exuberance after the concert.  And he was pleasantly surprised by the number of friends and faculty who travelled from Hopatcong to Whippany to hear his piece.


He cares deeply about music and it shows, not only in his writing, but in his enthusiasm for music. We wish him well in his future endeavors and anxiously await to hear more of his music.