District Band Festival
Goosebumps covered my arms as our high school band students marched into our high school gym, lead by our impressive drum line. The large crowd filling the space rose and we were treated to the inspiring sounds of the Star Spangled Banner. This is how our beloved District Band Festival starts every year yet it never gets old!!
Each grade level band, beginning with our newest musicians, our fifth graders, who have only been playing since last September, play one or two pieces that showcase their talents. It was truly an exciting event which was made even more special with the appearance of the guest conductor Mr. Michael Sweeney. Mr. Sweeney is currently the Director of Band Publications for Hal Leonard Corporation in Milwaukee, which is one of the largest publishers of printed music in the world. He is a prolific writer and arranger of music with a history of directing concert, jazz, and marching programs at all levels, from elementary to high school. Several of Mr. Sweeney's pieces were played during the concert, including a commissioned piece performed by the eighth graders entitled Irish Rising and a combined performance showcasing the Create 6th graders, along with the 7th through 12th graders. The piece entitled Shorewood Overture was written to be played specifically by musicians with different ability levels.
Another highlight was when three local veteran's groups recognized our high school musicians who have volunteered their time honoring our veterans. The high school musicians welcome home veterans at the Milwaukee airport by playing patriotic songs after they return from a day trip to Washington D.C. to view the monuments and memorials.
The amazing concert concluded with all of the bands playing John Philip Sousa's Stars and Stripes Forever, conducted by Mr. Michael Sweeney.
Best Wishes to our 25 graduating High School Seniors!! May you always keep music an important part of your life!!! And thanks to all participating in the two raffles that raised $500 for the Kettle Moraine Music Parents Association.
-- by Tanya Maas