The music students of South Huron have once again made our school and community very proud. On this historic day, both our Senior and Junior bands suited up for our performance on the National stage. SHDHS sent a record number 127 students to the Nationals this year from grades 7 to 12. The bands both worked very, very hard to rise to the National standard this year. Many early mornings and after school rehearsals through sleety and snowy roads, many hours of practise on their own and above all, a dedication that was unwavering and concrete to make history for SHDHS.
Our school should be proud to have sent our first Junior Band to Nationals EVER. This large group of grade 7 and 8 students has worked hard to take their band to the National level after just two years in existence, and with many new players in the ensemble. This group earned a B100 bronze for their performance, and should be proud of their accomplishments.
Playing at a National level is something only a few young bands in Canada get to do, and the work these students have put in, along with their amazing conductor Mrs. Regier is nothing short of impressive. All these students should be proud of their accomplishments this year in their band and hold their heads very high, as a Nationally-recognized junior ensemble. The possibilities and potential for this crew of students as they progress through our program are very exciting!
Our Senior Band’s program consisted of challenging B400 level repertoire. The nearly 25 minutes of music was a challenging program for our musicians, but an incredible focus and determination contributed to a magical performance. This performance of Blackwater (Carroll), The Seal Lullaby (Whitacre) and In the Forest of the King (LaPlante) was our best of the year. The large audience was in awe as our students as they expertly navigated and competed at a level shared with larger schools and arts-focused schools from all over our country. Our little school from Exeter put a B400 NATIONAL GOLD winning ensemble on that stage. Every adjudicator was blown away, as we received top marks and ratings in almost all categories. This is the first National B400 GOLD award for South Huron since 2002.
In the clinic portion, the senior band sight-read a brand new piece of music and worked with Dr. Sommer Forrester from the University of Massachusetts Boston. We were pointed in some different musical directions given some excellent feedback on our performance and reading abilities.
In addition, Courtney McBride (Senior Band, Clarinet) and Noah McGregor (Junior Band, Bari Sax) were awarded the Musicfest Honour Award for their contributions to the SHDHS Bands this year. In terms of leadership, musical abilities, and overall dedication to the music program at SHDHS, the band would like to thank and honour Courtney and Noah for their enthusiasm and dedication.
Be PROUD, South Huron. This day at Nationals is something to hold up very high as a testament to the hard work and dedication we show here at SHDHS. Each and every member of this community should share in our celebrations, as you all have had a role to play in our success. Whether it’s a supportive attitude towards our music program, cheering on your friends who are involved in the bands, attending a concert or two in the year, buying a raffle ticket from our music council, or just being a panther and being proud of our school, you’re playing a part in our success.
We thank you ALL very much for providing an environment where music matters at South Huron.