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SA Students Spend Summer in Spain Playing Music and Giving Back

Fente Brothers in Spain with traditional Asturian bagpipe.

This summer, Julian Fente ’24 and Adrian Fente ’27 spent time expanding their musical talents in Villaviciosa, Spain. This was the fourth summer that the Fente brothers played with the Villaviciosa concert band, made up entirely of local volunteer musicians. Julian (tuba) and Adrian (trumpet) rehearsed twice a week and played evening concerts in the park for delighted crowds. Besides enjoying the opportunity to play in a community band where they learned to play traditional Spanish songs, they also had the chance to partake in social traditions and town celebrations.  

When they were not playing with the community band, Julian and Adrian volunteered with Caritas, a Spanish Catholic non-profit organization that supports the marginalized and underprivileged within local church parishes. Once a week, Julian and Adrian joined their older brother Andres ’22, where they played guitar to the elderly residents at the local nursing home. The brothers enjoyed organizing and leading sing-alongs for the elderly residents. 

In addition to their charitable endeavors, Julian and Adrian completed a six-week apprenticeship in Colunga, Spain. Under the guidance of Maestro Miguel Alonso, one of the last remaining Asturian bagpipe luthiers, they built a traditional Asturian bagpipe. The apprenticeship was a great opportunity to appreciate the impact that an instrument's design and materials can make on the sound it produces. The brothers intend to donate the bagpipe that they built to Saint Andrew’s.

Emily Nichols, performing arts instructor, stated, “I am so proud and inspired by both Julian and Adrian. They are both dedicated Saint Andrew’s musicians, and this upcoming school year will be even more special with both brothers working together in the Upper School Symphonic Band! Using our talents and musical gifts to give back to our communities is a powerful way to be leaders and life-long artists. I’m excited to see what further impact the Fente brothers and our many talented SA musicians create in their futures! Go Scots!”

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