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By LuAnn Schindler

Ewing musicians perform in Europe


September 5, 2019

Courtesy photo

Three Ewing Public Schools musicians spent a month traveling Europe, as part of the Nebraska Ambassadors of Music program.

Allison Schrunk, Hailey Rotherham and Emily Kurpgweit, accompanied by Ann Kurpgeweit, tourned seven countries and performed in various venues across Europe.

Emily Kurpgeweit said the Ambassadors of Music program has existed for 40 years.

"They work with 35 different states organizing trips to Europe," she said.

Trips alternate throughout summer months.

The Nebraska touring group particpates every other year during June.

Musicians were nominated by music instructors.

Ewing music teacher Matt Maxwell nominted the trio.

"Approximately 280 were on the trip, including adults, leaders and directors," Kurpgeweit said.

In addition to the choir, musicians were able to participate in band and orchestra.

"There were many different directors; the choir had two directors, the band had three directors, and there was also an orchestra director," according to Kurpgeweit.

Before making the trip across the pond, band, choir and orchestra members spent three days at Elkhorn South High School practicing with music directors.

"This allowed us to give concerts throughout Europe that were well received and enjoyed. Our confidence in our ability increased with each concert, which made us better as the trip progressed," Kurpgeweit said.

The group visited England, France, Switzerland, Lichtenstein, Austria, Italy and Germany.

Kurpgeweit said the group spent most days traveling, siteseeing, and performing.

"We left early in the morning for organized tours, and we were getting back late nights after concerts. There were scheduled concerts and then the choir had unplanned concerts at St. Mark's Cathedral in Venice, the chapel at Castle of Chillon by Lake Geneva, and the town square of Zermatt, Switzerland, below the Matterhorn."

According to Kurpgeweit, the Ewing group "loved Switzerland."

What are some of the favorite memories?

Schrunk learned different techniques to make herself a better musician.

Rotherham liked getting to see how differently Europeans live, compared to Americans.

Kurgpeweit preferred seeing all the different lifestyles of Europe, from the big cities of Paris and London to the countryside of Austria and Switzerland to the canals of Venice.

"We learned so much and saw so many lifestyles that it is hard to pick a favorite because everything was wonderful," she said.


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