Barrington area bands rock District 220 fundraiser
Barrington High School's women's a Cappella group, "Premium Blend," perform Saturday during the "Band Together Music Fest" at Wool Street Bar and Grill in Barrington. | Ruthie Hauge~Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 1, 2013 6:48AM
BARRINGTON — Hundreds of people packed the Wool Street Grill and Sports Bar Saturday night to hear a variety of local bands, all with ties to Barrington School District 220.
The Band Together Music Festival, which benefitted the district’s Educational Foundation, featured two bands from Consolidated Music of Barrington’s Rock Star 101 program. White Shadow and The Road Not Taken, two bands made up of Barrington High School students, also performed.
“We had lots of great bands,” said Jenny Welsh, trustee of the Barrington 220 Educational Foundation and co-chair of Saturday’s event. “We had over 400 people come out.”
The evening also featured the girls a Capella group from Barrington High School and Pat McKillen, an acoustic guitarist and BHS alum.
Rod Tuffcurls and the Bench Press, led by BHS alums Tom Hoban and Kevin Keleher, headlined the event.
District 220 Superintendant Tom Leonard also took in the performances at Wool Street. He then took the stage to perform 1930s-era songs like Cole Porter’s “Night and Day” and Harold Arlen’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”
“It was songs that a lot of people know and it’s music I’ve always liked,” said Leonard, who played piano and saxophone.
Leonard said he was impressed with all the bands Saturday.
“The other bands were very good,” he said. “I’m certainly an amateur.”
Andrew Cielak of White Shadow said he describes his band’s music as alternative rock. The band, which also includes his brother Daniel and their friend Ryan Woodlock, has been playing since the three of them were in grade school.
“We’ve been playing together as White Shadow since second grade,” said Cielak, adding that White Shadow writes all of its own music. “We don’t play any cover songs.”
Welsh reported that the evening drew a diverse crowd, in part because of the wide range of music. She pointed to McKillen’s acoustic guitar and the cover music played by Rod Tuffcurls and the Bench Press, which perform songs from artists as diverse as Madonna and The Beatles, as acts that gave the show an energetic balance.
All proceeds benefit the Barrington 220 Educational Foundation.
“It was a great way to tie everything back to the educational foundation,” she said, adding that the money funds future projects.
“We usually do one or two major projects a year,” Welsh said.
One of those current projects, Welsh said, is to install document cameras in every middle school classroom. The interactive camera technology attaches to a smart board.
Katherine Logue, an educational foundation trustee who also co-chaired Saturday’s event, said money raised would also help fund programs like the Alumni Legend Program, which is bringing BHS alum and former Chicago Bear’s player Gary Fencik back to the high school next month.
“It was a really, really fun event,” Logue said.
The foundation, Logue reported, has raised more than $1.7 million for the district since its inception in 1999.