Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Honor Band Ready to Demonstrate the Fruits of Prodigious Practice; 170 Middle and High School Players Comprise the Select Group

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Honor Band Ready to Demonstrate the Fruits of Prodigious Practice; 170 Middle and High School Players Comprise the Select Group

Article excerpt

Byline: terry brown

A cacophony of sounds filled the band room on Monday as 80 middle school musicians ran through rifts and scales in an overwhelming swell from their instruments. Then, with one stroke of a director's baton, the ensemble transformed into a cohesive mixture of musical notes, flowing precisely in harmonic unity.

The students are members of the St. Johns County Superintendent's Honor Band, which will perform Wednesday at the World Golf Village. The group is composed of exceptional middle and high school band students from schools across the county. Along with the middle schoolers, who perform together, 90 high school students comprise another ensemble. Representing the northwest area, there are 24 students from Fruit Cove Middle, 18 from Switzerland Point Middle and 25 each from Bartram Trail and Nease high schools participating in the special evening of music.

"I am really proud of these middle and high school musicians. They work very hard and they all learn so much during the time prior to the performance," St. Johns County School Superintendent Joseph Joyner said. "The concert is personally one of my most favorite nights of the year."

Bartram Trail Band Director Jason Duckett said the chance for these talented musicians to perform together is a real thrill for the students and for the public, which is encouraged to enjoy the evening at the World Golf Village. Duckett said the chance to meet new students and share ideas is one of the advantages of an event like this.

Duckett's middle school counterparts agreed with his assessment.

"This is a great opportunity for these kids to work together and get experience working with other directors," said Gerry DeJoseph, band director at Switzerland Point Middle. "They also get to find out just how good they are and how much they actually know,"

To qualify for the ensemble, each member had to be chosen by the school's band director, said Don Isabelle, director at Fruit Cove Middle. …

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