A special guest will take the stage with the Hopkins High School orchestra Feb. 19: indie-rock/pop artist Jeremy Messersmith.
A Minneapolis-based musician known for his poppy sound, Messersmith has released five albums since 2006, with pieces that run the gamut from life in the Twin Cities to love. In 2010, NPR Music editor Stephen Thompson named Messersmith's album The Reluctant Graveyard one his favorites of the year.
Messersmith will play with Andy Thompson, who wrote string arrangments for the concert. Thompson, who usually plays drums in Messersmith's band and was one of the engineers on Taylor Swift's album Red, will be on piano this time.
The pair is rehearsing weekly with students in preparation for the concert, according to a release from the district. Messersmith will perform nine original songs with the orchestra, including "Welcome to Suburbia" and "Organ Donor," and will do some on his own.
This marks the fifth time the Hopkins Orchestra has worked with a professional musician for its February concert, the release said.
“The collaboration with Jeremy Messersmith has been a fabulous experience for our orchestra students,” said orchestra director Alison Swiggum in the release. “They have enjoyed learning about the professional music business from Jeremy and they see how their stringed instruments can be used in such a wide range of music.”