Two H-F musicians selected for Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra

Two outstanding Homewood-Flossmoor High School musicians have been selected for the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra.
 
Perry Hoag III and Alannah Hill, both of Flossmoor, have been playing with the youth symphony for a number of years and have now been promoted to the top level within its ranks. Hoag plays viola and Hill plays violin with the orchestra.
 
The Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra (CYSO) is considered one of the best youth orchestras in the country. It offers students the opportunity to hone their skills while performing the most advanced orchestral repertoire, alongside exciting new works by contemporary composers. It performs twice a year at Symphony Center in Chicago. In summer 2019, the orchestra will tour Europe’s Baltic region.
 
Perry and Alannah are both in the International Baccalaureate Program and were selected for this special curriculum designed for H-F’s gifted students who need challenges beyond Advanced Placement courses.
 
Alannah, the daughter of Allen Hill and Dr. Kalisha Hill, took piano lessons for two years before switching to violin, which she has played the past 12 years.
 
  Alannah Hill
She joined CYSO in 2014 and played with its various divisions, including Accelerando Strings for 2015-16 season, the Philharmonic Orchestra for the 2016-18 seasons and now is with the Symphony Orchestra.
 
“I am so passionate about music because it is a wonderful way for me to express myself, connect with others and help those in my community,” she said. “Without music, I think I would have not be able to have influenced or helped those in my community in the same way.”
 
Alannah has received numerous honors in performance during her time at H-F, including her freshman year serving as principal and section leader for the H-F Sinfonia Orchestra and being selected a member of the H-F Symphonic Strings.
 
She performed at the Montecito International Music Festival in 2016, and won first place honors at the Granquist Music Competition and Illinois Music Association Competition.
 
Alannah’s interest in music is second to her interest in science. She has done summer programs in biology, physics and chemistry at Harvard, Stanford and Northwestern universities. The past two years she has been a research volunteer in the cardiology department at Rush University Hospital and did a month’s work in 2017 with an Alzheimer’s research team at Harvard. In college she plans to major in molecular and cellular biology as part of a pre-medicine track.
 
At H-F, she is the president of the Spanish National Honor Society, vice president of the National Honor Society, a member of the mathematics honors society Mu Alpha Theta, Tri-M Music Honors Society, DECA Business Club and Mathletes. She has volunteered for numerous community service programs through H-F and Flossmoor Community Church.
 
Perry is the son of Karen and Perry Hoag II. He has been playing the viola for eight years. He joined CYSO in 2012. He started in the Preparatory Strings ensemble for CYSO’s youngest members and moved up to Debut Orchestra, then Concert Orchestra, Philharmonic Orchestra, and now Symphony Orchestra.
 
  Perry Hoag III
“I enjoy music because playing in an orchestra makes you feel alive and part of something bigger than yourself,” he said. “In addition, you can always improve on some aspect of your performance, so music rewards hard work and dedication.”
 
Perry won the Illinois All-State Musician Award this year, and the Illinois Music Educators Award in the 2015-16 and 2016-17 school years.  At H-F, he is first chair in the viola section for the H-F Viking Orchestra and won the “Pass the Baton” award this spring as the most outstanding orchestral performer.  He received the Honors Recital Award for viola in 2017 and 2018.
 
“I am planning on majoring in business or political science” in college, he said, adding, “I do plan on making music part of my college experience.”
 
Perry is also an outstanding athlete. He was the H-F boys golf team captain in 2016 and 2017 and was named most valuable player both of those years. He hopes to be part of a golf team in college.
 
As a member of the H-F boys tennis team, Perry was the most valuable player, playing both singles and doubles. This past year he was the team captain and most valuable player and was an IHSA state championship qualifier in singles. He took second place in SWSC Conference doubles.
 
He has played on the H-F Chess Club team since 2015 and was the most valuable player all three years. This past season, Perry took first place and was named IHSA sectional champion and set an H-F High School record for most career points.
 
At H-F, he is a member of the National Honor Society, Advanced Placement Scholar, mathematics honor society Mu Alpha Theta, Spanish National Honor Society and Tri-M Music Honor Society.
 

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