Local high school string quartet to join touring Beatles vs. Stones show on Fort Collins stage

left to right Kiaya Johnston, Laina Heacock, Sophie Zoll, and Natalie Heacock. Photo taken by Bennett Stucky
Andy Nagle

FORT COLLINS, CO (12/20/2018) When the touring show Beatles vs. Stones – A Musical Showdown comes to the Lincoln Center on January 15, the Poudre High School (Fort Collins) String Quartet will join the professional musicians on stage to lend some local talent to this homage to the British Invasion.

The show pits Rolling Stones tribute band Satisfaction against rival Brit boys Abbey Road in an all-out musical showdown for rock dominance. The string quartet will perform seven songs with the bands. The producers of Beatles vs. Stones approached Poudre High School Orchestra Director Bennett Stucky looking for a quartet who could hold its own with a rock band in front of an audience. The show commonly hires a local quartet to augment the production while on tour.

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Poudre High School seniors Kiaya Johnston, Laina Heacock, Sophie Zoll, and Natalie Heacock will join the bands for the songs “Eleanor Rigby,” “Yesterday,” “A Day in the Life,” “Hello Goodbye,” “Hey Jude,” “As Tears Go By,” and “Ruby Tuesday.”

Kiaya Johnston, 17, has been playing violin for ten years. She has participated in Colorado Music Educators Association Solo and Ensemble festivals, where she has received superior ratings.

“I love that orchestra allows you to work as a team while still cultivating your work into a greater product along with others’ work.”

Kiaya enjoys volunteering at the local hospital, participating in a theatre troupe in Fort Collins, and playing stand up bass and mandolin. She is a member of Poudre High School’s National Honor Society. The senior plans to attend college to major in Chemistry. She aspires to become a physician.

Laina Heacock, 17, has been playing violin for twelve years.

“I enjoy playing violin because I get to play the melodies. Being in a smaller ensemble is a lot of fun because we get to cue ourselves. Without a director, it’s all of us helping each other.”

Laina is a member of Poudre High School Nordic Ski team, Tennis team and Soccer team. She also is a member of the school’s service club and is a school ambassador. Laina participates in the school’s Science Olympiad and National Honor Society. The senior plans to attend Colorado College and major in Psychology.

Sophie Zoll, 18, has been playing viola for seven years.

Sophie is a past member of the Virginia Junior Regional Orchestra and participated in Colorado State University’s pre-college string quartet program.

“Getting to listen to the different elements of the orchestra, after listening to your individual part while practicing, really changes the sound of it and makes the sound really nice.”

She is a member of Poudre High School’s Tennis team, IB Program, and is a member of her school’s Dive team. She belongs to the National Honor Society and volunteers at a local hospital once a week. The senior plans to attend college to study International Studies or Environmental Studies.

Natalie Heacock, 17, has been playing cello for seven years.

“I chose to play cello because I love music in general, but I was really attracted to string instruments. After trying violin and not liking it that much, I switched to cello and it was perfect.”

Natalie is a member of Poudre High School’s Tennis team, Nordic Ski team, and Soccer team. She also participates in the school’s Service Club and is a school Ambassador. Natalie belongs to Poudre High’s National Honor Society and Science Olympiad. The senior plans to attend Smith College and major in Mathematics.

Quartet members have competed in Colorado Music Educators Association Solo and Ensemble festivals, receiving superior ratings.