Four William Floyd student-musicians – Shirley Galindo Jeronimo from William Floyd Middle School, and Aleena Alqadri, Kolton Chamberlain and Jackson Seifert from William Floyd High School – have recently been selected by the Suffolk County Music Educators Association (SCMEA) to each receive a $500 scholarship for summer study on their instruments! Each year, SCMEA selects just 20 students from across Suffolk County to receive this honor! This year William Floyd students accounted for 20 percent of all the students receiving scholarships!
Shirley Galindo Jeronimo, 8th grade, William Floyd Middle School, (Teacher: Dawn Conefry)
Shirley is an 8th grade clarinetist and member and the William Floyd Middle School 7th and 8th Grade Band! She has been selected for the Private Study Scholarship in memory of *Robert V. Domencetti.
Aleena Alqadri, 10th grade, William Floyd High School, (Teacher: Diana Brown)
Aleena is a 10th-grade violinist, who has been selected as a recipient of the 2023 Private Study Scholarship.
Kolton Chamberlain, 9th grade, William Floyd High School, (Teacher: Kim Hyland)
Kolton is a 9th-grade tubist, who has been selected as a recipient of the 2023 Private Study Scholarship in memory of **James “Jimmy F. Burke.”
Jackson Seifert, 9th grade, William Floyd High School, (Teacher: Kim Hyland)
Jackson is a 9th-grade trombonist, who has been selected as a recipient of the 2023 Private Study Scholarship.
Congratulations to all the recipients on this tremendous honor!
Memorial Scholarship biographies
*Robert V. Domencetti served as president of SCMEA 1985-86. He was director of music in the Harborfields schools as well as the high school wind ensemble and symphonic band director. Bob was an adjunct assistant professor of music at Queens College (Aaron Copland School of Music), president of NYSCAME Suffolk Chapter and Zone 14 representative for NYSSMA. As music director of the Huntington Community Band in the late 1980s Bob was known for his superb conducting style (a rare lefty). Over the years he left his mark as one of the most talented and approachable band directors on Long Island.
**James “Jimmy” F. Burke, regarded by many as the greatest cornet soloist in history, was the cornet soloist with the famed Goldman Band for a record 32 years. He was also the principle trumpet with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra from 1943-1950. Mr. Burke, who had the use of only one arm, was considered the greatest virtuoso of his time on the instrument. In addition to his work with the Goldman Band he had been a trumpet player in the Philadelphia Orchestra, first trumpet player with the Baltimore Symphony and Radio City Music Hall, trumpet soloist with the Band of America and All-American Big Brass Band, and guest soloist with more than 800 professional and school bands and orchestras throughout the country.
He retired from performing in 1975 to devote his time to teaching, conducting and family here on Long Island in Islip. He always had a full book of students and would often teach from early morning until late at night, sometimes seven days per week. He always made time for his students and would often go over, above and beyond the scheduled one-hour lesson. His teaching style was that of a doting father, all business and very intense when it came to playing the horn, yet he had a great compassion and warmth that made even the most nervous student feel at ease. He would never yell or get angry, only sigh with a comment like "You have sinned..." whenever a student obviously hadn't practiced. He is buried in his hometown of Port Jefferson.
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