About 250 students entertain during the all county band concert

February 04, 2012|By DAN DEARTH |
  • The All County Middle School Concert Band is made up of 130 Washington County Public School students playing together, Saturday during the All County Middle and Senior High School Concert Bands and Senior Jazz Band concert at North Hagerstown High School.
By Colleen McGrath/Staff Photographer

Dana Getka said she got a little nervous before playing a clarinet solo during the all-county band show Saturday night at North Hagerstown High School.

As second chair in the All Washington County High School Concert Band, the 14-year-old Boonsboro High School freshman said she never really played a lot of solos.

But when the first chair got knocked out earlier this week with a wrist injury, Getka said she was bumped into the spotlight.

“It’s my first solo in front of an audience,” Getka said. “It’s so scary.”

An estimated 400 people gathered in the high school auditorium to hear the All County Middle and High School Concert bands and the Senior Jazz Band.

Rob Hovermale, supervisor of visual and performing arts for Washington County Public Schools, said about 250 students from across the county were chosen to play Saturday night.

“We’ve had this (concert) for many, many years — over 30 years,” Hovermale said. “This is a culmination of all the best kids in the county coming together with guest conductors and putting their best foot forward.”

The All County High School Concert Band was conducted by Emily Threinen, director of bands and associate professor of music at the Boyer College of Music and Dance at Temple University.

U.S. Air Force Band member Pete Aiello conducted the All County Jazz Band, and Vicki Crum, an elementary and middle school band teacher for Frederick County (Md.) Public Schools conducted the All County Middle School Concert Band.

Hadley Giles, a tuba player in the middle school band, said the musicians practiced together for a just week before Saturday’s concert.

“My band director asked me if I wanted to be in it,” the 13-year-old Springfield Middle School student said. “I feel like other people think I’m a good instrument player because they know I can do this.”

Giles said she also made the all county band last year.

Hagerstown residents April and Michael Rivas said they were proud of their daughter, Alexus, for being named to the all county high school band.

They said Alexus is a dedicated flutist who practices nearly two hours every night.

“I’m happy for her,” Michael Rivas said. “She loves the flute. She’s doing what she loves to do.”

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