The fourteen schools of the CSAA Conference sent students and band directors to Newaygo High School for the CSAA Honors Band yearly practice and concert on November 13, 2018.
Students and directors arrived early during the day on Tuesday, quickly splitting into two groups with two separate directors. One director was Mr. Howard Wilson, a retired band director from Tri-County schools. The other was Mr. Matt Bishop, a retired band director from Grayling High School.
In order to be selected for this honor, band students must be nominated by their band director. Usually the selections are experienced juniors and seniors and first chair musicians.
Because this is an honors band experience, students are required to learn the music above and beyond what they are doing with their school bands. Students have about two weeks with the music prior to the day of honors band, but many are at the tail end of their competitive marching season while trying to prepare for this as well.
After practicing all day long, students gather together and perform a concert, which was held in Newaygo’s gymnasium. Each band performed 4 pieces.
Newaygo’s band director Katie Baynes said about the event that her favorite part is “when the kids make friends with the other band students from other schools. Some kids do multiple honors bands events with kids from other CSAA schools and with MSBOA as well. They look forward to seeing each other at each one.”