On Saturday, June 22, 2014, Steven Olick (AHS 2010 graduate) performed at the Albion First Presbyterian Church. The performance was a fundraiser sponsored by the Albion High School Alumni Foundation to help fund Steven’s upcoming once in a life time summer learning experience in Italy. For more information on Steven and his trip, click here and here.
The concert was well attended with 50+ people who enjoyed An Afternoon of Song, which included several art song and opera selections. It was an amazing concert – Steven is an extremely talented musician and the audience found his performance truly inspirational and thoroughly entertaining. One of Steven’s mentors and former teachers, Gary Simboli, provided the accompaniment and even performed a song with Steven and his sister, Charlyne Olick. Char also performed a solo piece – Handel’s “He Was Despised“, which she performed for her NYSSMA All-State audition solo. A Meet ‘n Greet was held by the AHS Alumni Foundation after the concert.
Steven was very appreciative of the opportunity to perform for his hometown and for the generosity of those in the community who are supporting his journey. “It is an amazing feeling to have your hometown do this for you, so thank you”, said Steven.
Steven Olick with his mentors and former teachers, Mike Thaine (left), Albion HS instrumental director, and Gary Simboli (right), Albion HS choral director
“I credit all of my motivation to become a musician to Mike Thaine and Gary Simboli. They both provided an amazing support system for me and were right behind me in every endeavor I proposed. It is only because of the support that they offered me that I am anywhere close to where I am as a musician today.”, Steven said in answer to a question posed for the Take 5 interview previously posted on this blog.
Steven performing with Gary Simboli accompanying him on piano
Steven Olick (left), Charlyne Olick (center), and Gary Simboli (right) performing the finale song, “The Irish Blessing” by Joyce Eilers
Char, Gary, and Steven at the Meet ‘n Greet
Charlie Nesbitt congratulating Steven at the Meet ‘n Greet
Steven with Meg (center) and Linda Logan (right)
Meg Logan is a 2012 Albion Alumni Foundation Scholarship winner and Smith Challenge winner. Meg just completed her sophomore year in the Physician Assistant program at D’Youville College. Her mother, Linda, is the ACS elementary school choral director.
Steven with Jeanie and Walter Martillotta
Charlie Nesbitt presenting Steven with a $3300 check at the Rotary Changeover Dinner June 26th
The check represents money raised from sponsors and concert ticket sales
Standing with Charlie and Steven is Gary Simboli and Ed Fancher
The following questions were asked of Steven prior to the concert:
What are you most looking forward to during your time in Italy?
What I’m most interested in is the culture in Italy. I feel that if we as humans never travel to foreign territory, we will be limited to very close-minded understanding of the world. Since I was a young child, I have always been attracted to the idea of traveling to Italy, so I decided to seize this opportunity to not only broaden my world view, but study music while doing so.
When / how did you fist discover you had a talent for opera?
After transferring to SUNY Fredonia, I had decided to switch my major to focus solely on voice, instead of double majoring in trombone and voice, as I was doing before. I knew that I had somewhat of a natural talent as a musician, but I knew that in order to become anything in a world of fantastic musicians I was really going to have to put my best foot forward. I decided that no matter the outcome, I would never know if I was really cut out for this unless I put a lot of hard work in. After about a year of hard work, I really fell in love with art song and opera. Somewhere along the line, after years of hard work, I realized that my love had developed into a talent.
What are some of your favorite pieces of music / musicians?
My favorite piece is Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto. It is the piece that really got me involved with classical music.
The Albion HS Alumni Foundation and Steven wish to thank the following contributors:
Rotary Club of Albion
ATB Staffing Services
Don Davis of Albion
Peter Snell Realty
Barre Stone Products
Christopher-Mitchell Funeral Homes
Tillman’s Village Inn
Charlie and Kim Nesbitt
Jack and Debby Batchellor
Bill and Marrlee Diehl
Richard and Kim Remley
All who purchased tickets to attend the concert
First Presbyterian Church of Albion
Jan Erakare – sound
Laura Simboli – tickets
Chris Haines, Mike Thaine, Marissa Olles, and Jonathan Doherty – event staff
Posted by Kim Wright Pritt
Photos courtesy of Sue Starkweather Miller