Honor Band Kicks Off Tonight

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In tandem with Carolina Crown's Partnership in Education, area middle school band students will participate in clinics tonight and tomorrow and perform in concert at Rock Hill South Carolina's Northwestern High School as part of the 16th annual York County Honor Band.

The more than 100 musicians were selected back in December from over 300 applicants. They will perform on Wednesday evening at 7pm in the Northwestern High School Auditorium. The concert is free to the public.

The audience can look forward to an exciting concert highlighted by two selections from renowned composer Brian Balmages: Fanfare and Fireworks and Jungle Dance. Additional works will include A Childhood Hymn by David Holsinger, Forward March by Paul Murtha, and Asian Folk Rhapsody by Richard Saucedo.

Balmages is no stranger to the Carolinas. He conducted the University of North Carolina at Pembroke Wind Ensemble back in November at the North Carolina Music Educators Conference. Concert-goers and drum corps fans might also recognize the name Richard Saucedo. He was the composer/arranger for The Cavaliers of Rosemont, Illinois from 2000 through 2008.

Carolina Crown has hosted Honor Bands for area middle and high schools since 2000, when six schools participated and 70 students were chosen for the clinic and performance. Through this process, the organization has been able to reach out and give back to the community, providing an exciting and enriching educational experience for local band students and music educators.

58ce24572b3328b7ccd16f2149a4c2bf.jpgSince the early years of this program, the Honor Bands have grown to encompass a much larger geographical area and reach hundreds of students. "We are proud to present another year of sound educational instruction," said Carolina Crown Executive Director Jim Coates. "Inspiring clinicians will help motivate and enrich the students of both North and South Carolina."

Hosting an event such as the York County Honor Band comes with its expenses, and Carolina Crown is pleased to again be the recipient of a grant from the Arts Council of York County. "We are fortunate to have an active organization such as the York County Arts Council," said Honor Band Coordinator Keith Suttles. "Without their support, it would be almost impossible to put on this important event each year." 

The director and clinician for the band this year is Dr. Quintus Wrighten, Director of Bands at Riverside High School in Greer, SC. Prior to accepting his current position, Dr. Wrighten served as the Director of Bands at Cane Bay Middle School of Summerville, SC, and Assistant Band Director at Cane Bay High School. Dr. Wrighten has also served as  the Associate Director of Bands at the University of Memphis, directing The Mighty Sound of the South Marching Band, conducting the Symphonic Band, and teaching courses in undergraduate conducting and instrumental materials and methods.

A graduate of the University of South Carolina, Dr. Wrighten has conducted honor bands and adjudicated ensembles in several states, including Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Texas. Active in the drum corps activity as well, Dr. Wrighten is currently the brass caption director for Coastal Surge Drum and Bugle Corps from Myrtle Beach, SC.

Participating middles schools and their directors include: Banks Trail MS – Kirk Godbey, Fort Mill MS- Connie Grantham, Gold Hill MS – Sean Carney, Springfield MS – Brandon Sanders, York MS – Jeff Robinson, Dutchman Creek MS – Scot McGuire, Castle Heights MS – Jermaine Evans, and Saluda Trail MS – Myra Amler.

 

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