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Mamaroneck Students Do Double Duty at Concert

MAMARONECK, N.Y. – Mackenzie Lesser-Roy pulled double duty for Wednesday's vocal and band ensemble concert in the McLain Auditorium at Mamaroneck High School, singing for both the swing choir and jazz band "A".

Lesser-Roy, 15, is in her second year with each group, but was a bit more nervous about her two solos with the jazz band.

"Because I have the two songs where I'm really exposed as a singer with the jazz band, it's frightening," said Lesser-Roy, who sang "Fly Me To the Moon" and "The Look of Love." "Before a concert I review all the words that I have to sing, I practice a bit and I make sure that I'm really comfortable so that I can let go during the performance."

Another junior at Mamaroneck High School, Bob Phillips, cut loose during the swing choir's performance of "Blame it on the Boogie," donning a pair of blue shades and an ear-to-ear smile. The Larchmont resident, in his first year in swing choir, was featured, in the up-tempo Jackson 5 classic.

"I love performing," said Phillips, who also pulled double duty in the swing choir and jazz band "B" on guitar Wednesday night. "I like connecting with the audience and you get to really express yourself when you perform."

Lesser-Roy said she’s learned how to deal with any pre-show jitters over the course of the approximately 40 performances that she’s been a part of since middle school.

"MacKenzie is the first regularly featured vocalist with the band in many years, and she has been in the elite specialty choirs since she was a freshman," said her mother Juliet Lesser, whose camera flash brightened Mackenzie's face whenever she was on stage.

In addition, she is an Area All-State and All-State vocalist, and is already pursuing a professional career in acting, singing and dancing. Her experience with swing choir and jazz band has taught her how to adapt to different styles.

"I'm in regular concert choir, but I wanted to get more experience singing in a smaller ensemble and signing different styles of music," said Lesser-Roy, who also played the cello for another music group's performance of "Winter Song" Wednesday night.

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