Ahwatukee Foothills residents are invited to one of the biggest performances of the year by Desert Vista musicians.

The Dec. 6 Orchestra and Guitar Holiday Concert will feature two guitar ensembles, the chamber orchestra, concert and symphonic strings, as well as combined performances that will lead up to the finale: a full symphony orchestra showcasing nearly 110 students on stage.

The group will be playing "Swingin' on the Housetop!," their take on the Christmas classic, "Up on the Housetop."

It has been a busy season for Desert Vista performers. The Thunder Marching Band, many members of which will be playing in this concert, is fresh off its recent second consecutive Division 1 Arizona State Marching Band Championship, and jumped right into rehearsals for the holiday concert.

The director said it is a tribute to not only what the band stands for, but the school as a whole.

"We pride ourselves in having an awesome performing arts department," said Dr. Darlene Wedington-Clark, director of the orchestra and guitar ensemble. "Our motto is excellence in everything that we do. The students put in countless hours, and they are always in the community performing."

The concert strings and symphonic strings will perform "Hanukkah Habanera," which combines traditional Hanukkah songs with Georges Bizet's famous "Habanera" from the opera, "Carmen."

"It's a fun and fiery take on the famous song," said Wedington-Clark, who is in her sixth year as director.

The Orchestra and Guitar Holiday Concert will take place at the Joe McDonald Auditorium on campus, 16440 S. 32nd St., at 7 p.m. General admission tickets are $5.

It is best to get their in advance because seats will fill up quickly, Wedington-Clark said.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-4903 or troemhild@ahwatukee.com

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