"For those that are not familiar with the Assessment and Festival Process in the Band and Orchestra world, it is very similar to the standardized testing process that education goes through, but for a performance based class. A panel of judges from all over the country, come together and listen to the performance set of the school. Based on the National Standards of Music and their experience in the music world, they make the judgment call if we are performing at the quality needed.
We performed on stage for the judge panel, and then immediately move to another room for something called “sight reading”. This tests the ensemble music literacy rate, and the ability of performing a never before seen piece of music. The piece gets placed in front of them, and then after only 8 minutes to analyze and discuss, we get one chance without stopping to perform the piece for a judge from start to finish.
I am exceedingly proud of this incredible program and how far they have come! There is no option of a replacement or back up or substitute in band, where every single student is to be held accountable for knowing their music and participating in the ensemble and showing their dedication and responsibility to the art we create. These students learned that without them there participating, they do not only let themselves down, but the students around them. With all of the talk of pride, and establishing the culture in the band to have pride in themselves first to be the example of pride on our school, I say that all of these students gave 110% of themselves to give a performance filled with PRIDE!
We hope we make you all proud, representing the best school in the district, with some of the best kids in the district, and continuing our tradition of a Superior Rated Band program here at West High School!"
-Erin Wander (Band Director)