09/23/14 10:00am
09/23/2014 10:00 AM
Amy Methven, a senior at RHS, was one of 100 high school students selected nationwide to perform in a prestigious orchestra next month in Nashville. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

Amy Methven, a senior at RHS, was one of 100 high school students selected nationwide to perform in a prestigious orchestra next month in Nashville. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

She hits all the right notes. And soon, 17-year-old violinist Amy Methven will be rewarded for it.

Come October, Amy will be performing on a much larger stage — at the famous Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville — as one of 100 high school students selected nationwide for the National Association for Music Education’s 2014 All-National Honor Symphony Orchestra.

“On one level [playing the violin] is very personal and requires a lot of focus. You have to train yourself to spend a lot of time practicing by yourself,” Amy said. “On a broader level, it is something really great to do with others. You create something beautiful with all these different people.”

A senior at Riverhead High School, she is the first Riverhead student chosen to perform by the organization, which works to promote music education.

The select group of students will have the opportunity to work with internationally recognized conductor Gerard Schwarz of the Seattle Symphony during a three-day conference leading up to the performance on Oct. 29. Students will also attend training sessions with other classical greats.

“He is a celebrity in the classical world, and I am really, really excited to meet all these other kids who share the same interest,” Amy said.

While Amy said she enjoys learning and playing with classmates in the orchestra and chamber orchestra at Riverhead, she said there aren’t many students in the district who are passionate enough to pursue lessons beyond school.

Amy’s orchestra teacher, Marisa Macchio, who encouraged her to apply for All-National honors, said Amy’s enthusiasm is what makes her stand out.

“Amy strives not just for perfection but for improvement, and that is what makes her stand out among her peers,” she said. “She is always looking for constructive criticism to help her through a difficult skill or musical passage.”

Amy said she has been working on improving since the day she started playing the violin — when she was 8 years old.

<z9.500>“To me, it’s more than a hobby. I spend so much of my week going to lessons and youth orchestra and pre-college [classes], and if I’m not doing that I’m practicing,” she said. “It is a big commitment. But I love it.”

The All-National Honor Symphony Orchestra will be playing a symphonic poem called “October,” by 20th century Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich, which Amy said she has already started practicing.

She said she wished more emphasis was placed on music and the arts in school, as there’s so much more to learn than simply performing.

“It definitely gives you a sort of focus you don’t get from anything else — it’s more than just win the game. You have to do it with a sort of poise and understanding,” she said.

09/17/14 5:00am
09/17/2014 5:00 AM
The Harlem Wizards pose with Riverhead faculty members at last year's game. (Credit: Riverhead School District)

The Harlem Wizards pose with Riverhead faculty members at last year’s game. (Credit: Riverhead School District)

The Harlem Wizards basketball team will return to Riverhead High School Nov. 19 and the Riverhead Central Faculty Association is currently seeking sponsorships for the event that attracted more than 1,000 people last year.  (more…)

08/31/14 6:00pm
08/31/2014 6:00 PM
Riverhead High School graduate Miguel Maysonet was vying for a spot on the Pittsburgh Steelers' roster. (Credit: AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Riverhead graduate Miguel Maysonet was vying for a spot on the Pittsburgh Steelers’ roster. (Credit: AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Here are 10 News-Review stories you may have missed over the past week. To make sure you stay on top of breaking news out of the Riverhead area, follow @riverheadnews1 on Twitter.  (more…)

08/21/14 12:00pm
08/21/2014 12:00 PM
A new weight room was constructed this summer at the high school, part of a $78 million construction project taking place districtwide. (Credit: Joseph Pinciaro)

A new weight room was constructed this summer at the high school, part of a $78 million construction project taking place districtwide. (Credit: Joseph Pinciaro)

Don’t be fooled while driving down Harrison Avenue: Riverhead School District officials say they’re pleased with the progress made this summer over at the high school and expect construction to be completed on time in the fall of 2015.  (more…)

06/28/14 2:27pm
06/28/2014 2:27 PM
Michael Hubbard receives his honorary degree at Riverhead High School's graduation ceremony Saturday morning. (Credit: Robert O'Rourk)

Michael Hubbard is cheered as he makes his way onto the stage at Riverhead High School’s graduation ceremony Saturday morning. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)

Hundreds of friends and family members packed the sidelines of Riverhead High School’s football field Saturday morning to watch members of the Class of 2014 receive their diplomas.

The outgoing seniors shared hugs and tears, reminiscing on the past triumphs and tragedies that shaped their education. (more…)

06/28/14 2:06pm
Amberlynn (left) and Lyn Fountaine posed for photos before going to Tracey Fountaine, who was burnt in a house fire Thursday morning. (Cyndi Murray photo)

Amberlynn Fountaine (right) and her mother Lyn posed for a photo at graduation Saturday. The family’s home was destroyed by a fire Thursday and Amberlynn’s father, Tracey, is at Stony Brook University Medical Center. (Credit: Cyndi Murray}

Amberlynn Fountaine would have preferred staying by her father’s side at his Stony Brook University Medical Center room Saturday morning. Instead, she fulfilled his dream of watching her receive her diploma along with the rest of her peers graduating Riverhead High School. (more…)

06/27/14 10:00am
06/27/2014 10:00 AM
Michael Kringle takes a break near a field outside Bennettsville, S.C. It was 95 degrees that day. (Credit: Michael Kringle)

Michael Kringle takes a break near a field outside Bennettsville, S.C. It was 95 degrees that day. (Credit: Michael Kringle)

You’ll have to excuse Michael Kringle for failing to make it all the way to the Florida Keys during his recent bicycle excursion from SUNY Binghamton in upstate New York.

Though reaching Florida’s southern limits was his initial goal, the 2010 Riverhead High School graduate called it quits after crossing into Florida and ultimately reaching Jacksonville.

Your initial reaction might be, ‘Why didn’t he just push himself for a few more days?’   (more…)

06/25/14 10:00am
06/25/2014 10:00 AM
Jeff “Doc” Greenberger, a longtime Latin teacher at Riverhead High School. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder file)

Jeff “Doc” Greenberger, a longtime Latin teacher at Riverhead High School. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder file)

A group of parents have submitted a petition to the Riverhead school board asking the district’s administration to allow the current Latin teachers to teach more sections instead of hiring an additional teacher.

During the school board’s meeting Tuesday, parent Sarah Bowe submitted a copy of an online petition signed by over 100 people asking the district to reconsider hiring a new Latin teacher and allow the program’s current teachers, Jeff ‘Doc’ Greenberger and Lorene Custer, to teach more sections.

“Many students enroll in Latin with the specific intention of being taught by Ms. Custer and Dr. Greenberger and they all deserve that opportunity,” Ms. Bowe said.

The petition states, in part: “We ask that, if at all possible, the district find a way to allow the existing teachers to teach any additional sections that need to be added.  Should that not be possible, we ask that any expansion of the Latin program be undertaken with the full cooperation of the existing teachers, so as to ensure the continued integrity of the program.”

Through Wednesday morning, it had gathered 118 online signatures.

When asked by a parent if the Latin teachers, who are married, were given the opportunity to teach the additional sections, school board president Ann Cotten-DeGrasse said, “It is a contractual matter.”

Assistant superintendent David Wicks said both teachers are on the hiring committee and were also asked to let the district know if they knew of anybody suitable for the position.