The Golden Eagle Symphonic Wind Ensemble is preparing for the State Concert MPA competition on Apr. 29. The members of this prestigious band program had the opportunity to compete after gaining a superior in a district concert. Band Director Brian Grieb described the meticulous planning taken in order to receive the highest scores possible in the upcoming state competition.

“They [the judges] have three boxes and categories,” Grieb said. “There’s technical preparation which is notes and rhythms. There’s musicality and then overall general effect.”

The practices and classes taken to prepare was a crucial factor in being able to participate in such a competitive event. Freshman Savannah Toro recalled that the Symphonic Wind Ensemble was able to improve immensely from the start of the season to now. This was due to the large amount of time spent practicing the musical pieces that will be played on the day of the State Concert MPA.

“We do a nice warm up and each practice we gain knowledge and become better,” Toro said.

The symphonic band members have grown in other ways besides their musical ability. Junior Jake Finman has been a part of the NHS band program since his freshman year of high school. Finman explained that committing to such a demanding extracurricular is challenging due to having to balance schoolwork and other activities along with it. However, he was able to improve upon his time management throughout the season.

“I feel it’s just like understanding that to be better, you need to put in hard work,” Finman said.

The Band Director will be reentering music pieces previously played in the district competition. The arrangement consists of music from composers such as David Gillingham, Robert Sheldon and Joseph Sook. Members of the symphonic group are anxiously waiting for what the performance will sound like for a final time.

“I think it will be very interesting to see how much information and critique we’ve been able to use to make our pieces,” Toro said.

The dedication from leaders of the Golden Eagle Symphonic Band Ensemble have helped to make the participation in the State Concert MPA possible. The work assigned and practices held are both components that allowed band members to better their playing and overall technique.

“I feel as though without our director, we wouldn’t have gotten to where we were,” Finman said.