Students Travel to Northwestern to Participate in the NWMA All-Conference Honors Band


NWMA Honors Band participents with their director, Mrs. Kavajecz Left to Right: Saya Kangas, Lizzy Kobie, Natalie Knaack, Douglas Hipsher, Sara Kangas, Signe Branham & Nicole Kavajecz.

Signe Branham, Editor-in-Chief

On Tuesday, November 7th, several South Shore High School students had the chance to go to Northwestern High School to perform in the NWMA All-Conference Honors band.  The members included freshman Natalie Knaack, sophomores Douglas Hipsher, Sara Kangas, and Saya Kangas, junior Lizzy Kobie, and senior Signe Branham.  Only five schools participated this year.  Along with South Shore, Ashland, Drummond, and Washburn made the trip to Northwestern to be apart of this event.

The participants arrived at 9:30.  They began their rehearsal at 10:00.  This year’s guest conductor was Mr. Steven Boyd.  The morning was spent sight-reading and getting used to the pieces as a band.  A break was taken for lunch at 11:20.  After lunch, it was back to more rehearsing.  Mr. Boyd continued to have the band work through each piece, this time more in depth.

The concert began at 5:00 p.m.  The band first played “Marche des Parachutistes Belges (March of the Belgian Paratroopers)” by Pierre Leemans.  This song featured the piccolo, oboe, and baritone sax parts.  Sophomore Douglas Hipsher was one such baritone sax player. Next was “Cumberland Cross” by Carl Strommen. Mr. Boyd used this song to show how demanding of perfection being in a band is.  The played six measures from “Cumberland Cross”.  The first time, they were instructed to play at their best.  The second, they were to play at 90%.  While in most activities and classes 90% would be great, this is not the case for bands.  In order to sound great, everyone must play at 100%.  After this, the band moved on to “The Blues Brothers Revue” arranged by Jay Bocook. This song was a mash-up of several songs from the Blues Brothers movie. The band closed out the night with “Black Tower Overture” by Kevin Kaisershot.  This piece sounded very ominous and was a great song to close the night.  Lizzy Kobie commented, “My favorite piece was definitely ‘Black Tower Overture’.  I liked that it featured the back row.”

Overall, the day was a big success. Next year’s turn out should be even better.