In January, Ray and four of his classmates scored a Superior rating at a Regional Solo and Ensemble event in Bellingham, which qualified them to go to the state contest in Ellensburg last week. The quintet was required to play the same piece of music (Die Bankelsangerlieder) and was prohibited from making any changes to the group.
The boys were very responsible when it came to preparation and practicing. They received some good coaching from the Anacortes band director, Ian Simensen, and from Malcolm Peterson of the Fidalgo Youth Symphony.
They were goofy, at times, and they had fun. They roomed together in a hotel the night before, got a day off from school and spent a sunny day on a college campus with hundreds of other musically inclined high school kids.
The judges awarded them a rating of "Excellent" for their performance. The scale is Superior, Excellent and Good. We received the written comments today in the mail and one of the judges actually rated them Superior. Most of the feedback pointed to improvements needed in tempo and dynamics, and all three scorers mentioned "rushing". Other quotes were, "Mp/p sounded good. Overall - good! Fine literature. Solid interpretation. Nice brass sounds!" My favorite remarks were, "I really liked the ornaments" and "Nice ornaments, trumpets."
|Chris Ford, Ray Palmer, Conner Darrow, Blake Prescott, Jay Sourbeer|
Courtesy of Les Schwab Tires and the Washington Dairy Farmer's Assn, the Washington Music Educators Assn. awarded each participating group a certificate and a handshake. There is a lot behind a three minute performance.
They are on YouTube. Here is the link.