Last fall, the Naugatuck High School Percussion Ensemble garnered some attention from the Phish faithful with their cover of the band’s classic composition, “Divided Sky”. Now we’re happy to report that the talented group of young Connecticut musicians is back at it with a fantastic rendition of another symphonically-structured Phish favorite, a little story of an ugly pig named “Guyute”.
Naugatuck High School Percussion Ensemble – “Guyute”
In a 2017 interview with Live For Live Music, NHS percussion instructor Don Binette explained that the Phish organization gave their blessing to the NHS Percussion Ensemble’s project in 2009, long before the group began working on “Divided Sky” in earnest. Binette was even put in touch with Trey Anastasio‘s string arranger, Don Hart, who approved of the ideas. However, things didn’t really get moving until 2016, when the ensemble’s new instructor, Dave Pelaggi, contacted past teacher in search of ideas. That’s when Binette once again reached out to Hart, who offered his own thoughts on how the piece could be arranged for a percussion ensemble. By the winter of 2017, the NHS Percussion Ensemble finally delivered their “Divided Sky” to the world, eventually receiving some expert validation from Trey Anastasio himself.
“It’s a real dedicated group of kids,” Binette told Live For Live Music last year. “Some of them are doing school sports now too. They’re going to school, doing their sports activity and heading here straight from that. I get tingles listening to them, when they hit the times and tempos right. It’s a dream come true to mix those two worlds together and to have it come out as well as it is right now.”