City High Quartet Performs at Hancher


Kate Kueter

String Quartet of Kaya Zdan ’20, Mark Krysan ’20, Alex Marsh ’20, and Daphne Knoop ’20 play at Hancher event.

Kate Kueter, Video Editor

Anticipation hung in the air as the caterers rushed around chiming glasses. As the doors opened, kids rushed in. The musicians pulled their bows across their strings and the notes rang through the lobby. Two violins created a melancholy feeling as the viola and cello created a deep pull to the music. Hancher Auditorium was filled with the melody of classic holiday carols. A string quartet of violinist Mark Krysan ‘20, Allstate violinist Kaya Zdan ‘20, violist Alex Marsh ‘20, and All-State cellist Daphne Knoop ‘20 performed several holiday favorites as background music for Hancher’s first annual Brunch with Santa event. While kids filled the lobby waiting to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus they danced to the music of the City High quartet. 

“You had the kids running around, there’d be parents that come up and like playing with their kids while we’re playing,” said Zdan. “Lots of parents came up with their kids to dance to the music.” 

A representative of the Hancher Guild Association contracted First Chair violist of the City High Orchestra, Rachel Meehan ‘21 asking for a small group to perform both days of the event. They had not played as a quartet before, although they had been in the City High orchestra together. The quartet had practice on their own at school for the gig. 

According to Marsh, these types of performances are not offered through high schools and often students have to find the opportunities themselves. Having little experience in public small group performances, the size of the crowd was “just right.” On the second day, the quartet took the liberty of their musical abilities and improved their songs. In some songs, the melody would stay the same while the harmony changed creating a new feeling to the song. 

“The second day, it was kind of fun because you’d start a new piece and then you don’t know what’s gonna happen,” said Marsh. 

The Hancher Guild Association hopes to continue this event as a yearly tradition in the community. The City High quartet was one of the two groups that performed at the event, Regina High School’s orchestra also performed. Other high schools in the area were asked to perform but did not respond to the invitation. City High will likely continue performing at this event in future years.