Approximately 200 Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools middle and high school students came together March 26 for the annual All-County band performances at Minges Auditorium at N.C. Wesleyan College’s Dunn Center.
Kenton Morgan, an eighth-grade student at Red Oak Middle School, said he was excited to have participated in the concert.
“Today has been a great experience, getting to play with a variety of different people from other schools,” Morgan said. “Playing with top students musically makes a real difference.”
Two guest conductors lead the young performers, practicing with the groups Monday night and throughout the day on Tuesday in preparation for the concert. Dr. Jay Juchniewicz from East Carolina University’s School of Music was the Middle School Clinician.
“It has been an absolute pleasure to work with this group,” Juchniewicz told the audience. “I have not worked with a more professional group of students than the students seated here on this stage.”
Following the middle school performance, the high school students took the stage, led by guest clinician Dr. Evan Feldman from The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill’s School of Music. Feldman expressed his gratitude to the parents and teachers for their continued support of the arts in the district.
Music educators across the district were pleased with the enthusiasm of students as Rocky Mount High School band director Tremayne Smith indicated.
“In talking with the students about the experience of being a part of All County Band, what I heard them express was the feeling of having an audience of people who really care about music – suddenly it was not just about playing in a band, but creating music,” Smith said.
Laura Parrott, coordinator of the fine arts for Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools, explained that the All-District performance demonstrates the school system’s ongoing commitment to ensuring that the Arts programs continue to grow stronger, so that students continue to experience success.
“March is Music in Our Schools Month,” Parrott said. “This year’s national theme is Music Education-Orchestrating Success. Our district is extremely fortunate to have band directors who foster success in our students, not only as musicians, but as student leaders.”