The Middle School Honor Band, hosted by the Music and Theatre Arts Department on February 1, benefited a wide variety of people. The lobby in Haas Fine Arts Center was filled with enthusiastic middle schoolers (who had not been in school all week because of “Snow Days”), their band directors, UW-EC music students, and UW-EC faculty members, Dr. John Stewart, conductor of the Wind Symphony, and Dr. Phil Ostrander, conductor of the Symphony Band. This year, approximately 250 students from thirty schools in Wisconsin and Minnesota participated. When asked about what she got out of the day, middle school student responded, “It was fun to play new music I do not normally play with new people.” The student enjoyed the day so much, she did not realize how much she was learning and growing as a musician. Zachary Bartsch, a UW-EC alumnus and current band director at Hillsboro Middle and High School, touched base with former instructors and offer something different to his students. Bartsch said, “(Middle School Honor Band) is an incredible opportunity for musical enrichment.” It is especially valuable that students from a smaller school have the opportunity to be part of a large ensemble with students of similar ability.
Middle School Honor Band is organized by a UW-EC student. This year, Angela Klinkner put hours and hours of work into making the day run flawlessly. Angela says, “not only does it promote UW-EC’s Music Department, but it also gives middle school students from the area the opportunity to collaborate with other talented musicians and learn from different directors.” Angela is a sophomore Music Education – Instrumental major and is grateful for the opportunity to learn valuable skills she will use in her career as a band director. Out of all the different people that came to Middle School Honor Band, I believe that not one of them left without taking something away from the day.
Abbey Keister, public relations intern