SPHS Band And Orchestra Students Reflect On Memorable Moments


The end of high school is bittersweet for many students who will leave behind an important chapter in their lives while looking ahead to the future. These band and orchestra members at Severna Park High School shared highlights about their time as musicians, along with their favorite bands and upcoming goals.

Alejandro Almodovar-Vives

Baritone Saxophone

Highlights: I participated in marching band and symphonic band all four years of high school, with three years in the jazz band and percussion ensembles. I performed in the “Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival” band the last two years and in all musical pit/band one year (“Footloose”). I earned superior rating at all-county solo and ensemble, three years, with the percussion ensemble, and I was all-county jazz band 2024. I am the student president of the band and this year's recipient of the Patrick S. Gilmore Band Award.

Favorite memory: My favorite memory is always the home show as it feels so nice to host so many schools at home and it helps take away work from me as there is nothing I need to load into a truck.

Plans: I plan on heading to West Virginia University, and I will pursue a major in aerospace engineering.

Jack Clayton

Alto Saxophone

Highlights: I was the 2023-2024 senior drum major for the Falcon marching band. I participated in marching band, symphonic band and jazz band all four years of high school and the percussion ensemble one year. I am this year's recipient of the National School Marching Award.

Favorite memory: Everything. There hasn’t been a single moment of my time in this program that I haven’t considered to be special.

Favorite band: Foo Fighters

Plans: I will attend Penn State, majoring in electrical engineering. I plan to continue to find opportunities to practice and make music along the way!

Liam Cooney

Keyboard, Double Bass, Violin, Percussion, Bassoon, Piano

Highlights: I played keyboard in marching band four years and was front ensemble captain and president of the Tri-M Music Honor Society senior year. I played classical double bass and violin in orchestra, percussion and bassoon in concert band and symphony, and piano in the jazz band. I got to perform in all-county orchestra, all-county jazz ensemble and two epic “Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival” shows. I am this year's recipient of the Leonard Bernstein Musicianship Award and the John Philip Sousa Award.

Favorite memory: I really enjoyed performing with the jazz band at Dollywood.

Favorite band: Nirvana

Plans: I plan to participate musically at University of Maryland, College Park while majoring in biological sciences (physiology and neurobiology) on my path to becoming a doctor.

Josephine Kilby


Highlights: I have performed in the percussion ensemble since transferring high schools in the middle of my junior year, performing in both the marching band and symphonic band.

Favorite memory: It was during band camp, and it was tech day and anyone in the pit would know why.

Favorite band: Jagwar Twin

Plans: I am attending Penn State for biomedical and veterinary sciences. I plan to become an exotic veterinarian.

Justin Kirkendall

Violin, Bass Guitar

Highlights: I was a member of the SPHS instrumental music program for four years, playing violin in the SPHS orchestra for all four years and bass guitar in the SPHS jazz band and “Rock ‘N’ Roll Revival” productions for three years, starting in the 10th grade. I was a member of the AACPS all-county orchestra in 10th, 11th and 12th grades, and a member of the Maryland 2022-2023 All-State orchestra in 11th grade. I was a recipient of the National School Orchestra Award the last two years and served as the concertmaster of the SPHS orchestra. Additionally, I led a string quartet with several friends, performing at various events, including the AACPS and Maryland State Solo and Ensemble.

Favorite memory: My favorite memory participating in SPHS instrumental music is the spring trip we take every year. This year we went to Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, and it was a lot of fun being able to perform with my friends and explore the attractions in Pigeon Forge.

Favorite band: Whitney Houston

Plans: I plan on majoring in cell biology and genetics on a pre-med track at the University of Maryland and plan to go on to medical school after college.

Dylan Kline

Tenor Drums, Bass Drum

Highlights: I performed in the SPHS marching band, playing the tenor drums (quads) and bass drum, as well as percussion in the jazz band, percussion ensemble and pep band. In my freshman and sophomore years, I participated in the percussion and wind ensembles at my previous high school.

Favorite memory: My favorite memory is spending the fall seasons with the marching band.

Favorite band: Tool

Plans: I plan to major in mechanical engineering at Penn State University. While in college, I plan to participate in the marching band. “We Are!”

Sylvia Steppe


Highlights: I participated in the marching band the last two years, jazz band in 2022-2023 and the Keystone Indoor Drill Association (KIDA) in 2024.

Favorite memory: Breaking 80 at the Linganore High School marching band competition.

Favorite band: Japanese Breakfast

Plans: I will study art and communications at the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA).

Maya Wolfe


Highlights: I performed with the SPHS orchestra for four years and have been a cellist for nine years. In my senior year, I was assistant section leader for the cello section. I have participated in the Anne Arundel County all-county orchestra four times; 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022.

Favorite memory: My favorite memory participating in the SPHS orchestra was playing for the school at the in-school winter concert. I enjoyed being able to bring joy to the students right before everyone went on break.

Favorite band: AJR

Plans: My future plan is to go to the University of Rhode Island for a chemical engineering degree. I hope to continue playing my cello throughout my college years.


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