Lucy Wotell
Lucy Wotell

Lucy Wotell has been a Marketing Coordinator and media contact for Music for All, since August 2016. She focuses on social media, media relations, and web content management. She is a graduate of the University of North Florida, where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations.

The fourty-sixth installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

DanaS

Name: Dana Sutherlin

Hometown: Greenfield, IN

School Name: Mt. Vernon High School

Section: Dancer

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
My older brother was on the drumline as a snare player in the 2013 BOA Honor Band. I saw the dancers and was excited to audition for the Honor Band this year. I knew my brother had a lot of fun and learned a lot, so I wanted that experience too, but as a dancer.

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
I'm most excited about marching in Disneyland. I  marched in Disney World once before with my high school band and it was incredibly fun. I think that it's really cool that I will have marched at Disney World and Disneyland. I am also really excited to meet so many people from different states.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
1. Practice is more important than the performances and competitions, because that is what prepares you. If you don't practice well, then you will not perform well.
2. No matter how good you are, you should always strive to be better. No one can ever be perfect, so you always need to work hard.
3. Friendships builds a great band, just as much as practicing. If band members argue with each other all the time, then they will not perform well. Everyone needs to get along and support each other in order to be successful.

Most memorable moment in band?
My most memorable moment was when my guard instructor was presenting awards and I was given the award for Best Performance. He said people were always asking him about me and telling him that I was great at performing. It really made me feel like my hard work had paid off.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
Besides Color Guard, I am on the Prom Committee and I am the secretary of National Honor Society. I take seven dance classes a week at Wilkerson Dance Studio including tap, jazz, ballet, pointe, hip hop, contemporary, and modern.

What's your favorite book?
My favorite book is The Book Thief. Not only is it an entertaining book, but it's also full of information. It is one of the only books I've read that has kept me on the edge of my seat, while learning.

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
Bohemian Rhapsody is my favorite song because of how many different styles of music are in one piece. The first time I heard it I thought it was the strangest song ever, but now I love it.

Favorite movie?
Footloose or Moulin Rouge

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Mint Chocolate Chip

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I want to go to Purdue University for a major in Law and Society and a minor in Dance. I would love to become a detective or a forensics scientist. Also, I plan on teaching dance classes, or teaching color guard.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
I have been in one BOA Regional competition at Ball State University.

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I raise Boer goats, and show them at the county and state fair. This past year I was the Reserve Champion in Senior Showmanship, and got to compete with all the other top showmen at the county fair in a competition called the Round Robin. That is when you show a boer goat, sheep, beef cow, dairy cow, and pig against everyone else. It was a great experience.

DanaS2DanaS3DanaS4

 The fourty-fifth installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

AustinH 

Name: Austin Huffman

Hometown: Covington, GAH

School Name: Eastside High School

Section: Clarinet

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
I saw it as a wonderful opportunity to experience something that I may never get to do again. I know this event will showcase some of the best young musicians across the country, and I saw it as an opportunity to join them. I'm am absolutely honored to be part of this parade and look forward to meeting everyone, and enjoying this wonderful experience!

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
I am so excited to meet new people. I am very sociable and cannot wait to make so many new friends that I will have for the rest of my life.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
The first thing I've learned in band is how to work with a group on one specific thing (teamwork). I have also learned how to apply my skills in music to things outside of band. The most important thing I've learned in band is to care for everyone. My band is a family, and that means we love and care for everyone.

Most memorable moment in band?
My most memorable moment in band was when we took our trip to Hollywood to march in the Hollywood Christmas Parade over Thanksgiving break. I got to travel with my closest friends and we had an absolutely amazing time.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
I am part of the STEM program, an advanced program meant to challenge me academically, while preparing me for a career in science or math. I play soccer for my high school, and I am in Latin club. I also participate in community service with my school.

What's your favorite book?
My favorite book(s), besides the Bible, would have to be the trilogy of the Lord of the Rings. I can't pick a favorite, but if I had to, I'd say the Return of the King.

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
My favorite song would have to be Til Kingdom Come by Coldplay. My favorite piece of music would have to be The Battle Hymn of the Republic.

Favorite movie?
Into the Wild

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Cotton Candy

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
After I graduate high school, I plan to attend Georgia Tech or Auburn for Aerospace Engineering or piloting school. I may also apply for both the Air Force Academy and Naval Academy.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
I have not.

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I love to speak. I am a philosophical thinker. I always question things, just to see how others think. I love learning about other people through conversation. I love the world and all it's people.

AustinH2 AustinH4

The fourty-fourth installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

AbigailC

Name: Abigail Clay

Hometown: Fresno, CA

School Name: Clovis West

Section: Color Guard

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
Alumni from my school had done it and I really enjoy parades.

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
Marching in the parade and getting to meet all of these talented people from around the country.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
1. You alone can make the band better. You are as weak as your weakest member.
2. It doesn't matter if you win, it matters that you preformed your heart out.
3. Band is one big family that all love and care for each other.

Most memorable moment in band?
This year we able to travel across the country to attend Grand Nationals. It was so amazing because we had never experienced these great bands live.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
I play oboe and I spin with the colorguard.

What's your favorite book?
Ready Player One

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
Happy

Favorite movie?
Every Harry Potter movie.

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Mint Chocolate Chip

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I hope to go to college and earn a degree in Business Management and participate in the Disney College Program.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
St. George Regional
Long Beach Regional
San Jose Regional
American Canyon Regional
Grand Nationals

AbigailC2AbigailC3

The fourty-third installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

EmmaC2

Name: Emma Coker

Hometown: Lugoff, SC

School Name: Lugoff-Elgin High School

Section: Bass Drum 2

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
I thought it would be a great opportunity to travel the country and meet new people that share the same passion as I do. Also, I had only been playing bass drum for a little while, at the time I applied, and I figured the experience would help me improve my playing skills and abilities.

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
I'm most excited for meeting the people and learning new things from the directors and fellow band members.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
I've learned how to be myself around people and if someone doesn't like you, then that's okay. Most importantly, I've learned how to be more relaxed and comfortable during performances and auditions.

Most memorable moment in band?
By far, my most memorable band moment would be going to Indianapolis to perform in the Grand Nationals award ceremony with the 2017 Tournament of Roses drumline.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
I am a part of the BETA Club, NSHSS (The National Society of High School Scholars), Spanish Club, Be A Fan Club (a club that organizes and gets involved with the special needs programs and events), Sports Medicine, and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

What's your favorite book?
Either The Bible or This I Believe II

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
I listen to almost every genre from Classical to Country to Trap/Hip-Hop/Rap. I'm currently obsessed with the song Higher by the band Unspoken. It's a Christian Pop song with some jazz/big band influences.

Favorite movie?
Either Charlie St. Cloud, or 50 First Dates.

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Strawberry

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I plan on majoring in Music Education at Furman University and interning at Music for All for a while. I have yet to decide if I would want to work at Music for All as an Event Coordinator or become a high school percussion director/professional performer.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
Participating in this band will be my first MFA/BOA event.

EmmaCEmmaC4EmmaC3

The fourty-second installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

KatherineR

Name: Katherine Reeves

Hometown: Marietta, GA

School Name: Pope High School

Section: Drum Major

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
Through Music for All's Summer Symposium and the time I have spent with my own band. I have learned more, grown more, and accomplished more than I ever imagined before I was a part of a marching band or in a leadership position. I believe that the people at Bands of America are the most hardworking, charismatic, and inspiring people in the country, and having one last chance to meet and work with these individuals is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
The chance to work with a group of 300 students and teachers, equally as dedicated to music I am, is a prospect unmatched by any other opportunity I have ever had.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
1. Putting the band before your own self reaps far more reward than a good night sleep, perfect grades, or any friendship with one who cannot understand the purpose and importance of your devotion.
2. Whether you are a freshman, senior, flute, tuba, drum major, rookie, section leader, flag, weapon, parent, director, or anything in between, you are important. Only when every member of a group performs their part to the best of their ability does ordinary become extraordinary.
3. One who is talented, but apathetic will never get as far as one who is struggling, but determined.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
As a leader, I feel that I can only serve my program to the best of my ability by focusing all of my time and energy to band. Since marching season has ended, I have gotten involved in Winter Guard and joined Sources of Strength as an advocate for mental health and suicide prevention.

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
Anything that I can sing along with in my car!

Favorite movie?
Meet the Robinsons

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Turkey Hill Double Dunker...it's like mocha ice cream with Oreo's and cookie dough. 10/10 recommend.

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I am currently planning to take a gap year to begin working, getting involved with social equality and justice groups, and taking time to discover more of my interests and talents.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
In 2015 and 2016, I attended the Leadership Weekend and the Drum Major Institute at Music For All's Summer Symposium.

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I was a competition dancer for eight years before I joined marching band my sophomore year.

KatherineR2KatherineR3

The fourty-first installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

 KelliK

Name: Kelli Kwiatkowski

Hometown: Warren, MI

School Name: Fitzgerald High School

Section: Trumpet

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
I applied for the band because I wanted to experience being a part of a marching band that was outside of my school. I also want to make lifelong friendships with people from all over the country.

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
I am most excited about the performance at Disneyland! I have never been there and I think that being able to perform there is such an honor that I will remember forever.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
From being involved in band, I learned time management, team work, and how to be productive, while having fun at the same time.

Most memorable moment in band?
My most memorable moment in band was my junior year when my band went on a trip to San Francisco. I ended up getting very sick while we were there and I could not play my instrument for two weeks leading up to our Spring Concert. I was really nervous to perform at the concert, since I hadn't played in a while and I also had two revealing solos. I ended up doing really well and everyone came up to me after the concert to congratulate me! It was most definitely a few weeks I will never forget.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
Besides being in our schools highest ensemble and a section leader in our marching band, I am President of Band Council, Vice President of our chapter of National Honor Society, and a Representative in our Student Government.

What's your favorite book?
If I Stay

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
Symphonic Dance No. 3 by Clifton Williams

Favorite movie?
Tangled

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Chocolate

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I would like to attend Western Michigan University to obtain a Music Education Degree, with a History Education Minor.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
I have never participated in any MFA/BOA events before, so I am very excited to participate in this one! Although, I would like to attend Summer Symposium this upcoming year.

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I am probably one of the most organized people ever. People are always telling me how organized I am and how they wish they could be as well. I am also a pretty good note taker.

 KelliK2KelliK3KelliK4

The fourtieth installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

RyanL3

Name: Ryan Lavin

Hometown: Tinley Park, IL

School Name: Marian Catholic High School

Section: Trombone

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
I heard about this opportunity from a friend, and I asked my band director, Mr. Bimm, for further input. Initially, I felt very intimidated that only the top 300 musicians in the United States would be admitted into this ensemble, but after some helpful persuasion from my parents, I submitted my audition, and I am here now.

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
I am excited for a number of different things. One of which, is being able to learn from some of the most accomplished and talented music educators from across the nation. This experience of learning from these distinguished individuals will go unparalleled in my future as a musician. I am also extremely excited to share this experience with four other musicians from my school, including my younger brother.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
1. I've learned that in order to be an extraordinary musician, you must first be an extraordinary person. Being a good citizen and exemplifying good qualities is essential to one's focus on being a great musician.
2. I've learned about leadership during my years in band. Whether it being a leader in my middle school band, or a Squad leader in Marian Catholic's Marching Band, I've learned so much about the necessary elements to become a successful leader.
3. I've also learned about becoming a better player in just my three years in high school. By learning from my band directors, I have emerged as a smarter individual with a more focused area to improve myself, and to help others around me as well.

Most memorable moment in band?
I have too many! From participating in Illinois SuperState competition with my middle school band, as well as my high school band, to performing at Lucas Oil Stadium in front of thousands at Grand National Finals.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
Other than band, I am active in our school's Political Club.

What's your favorite book?
My favorite book is probably The Mullah's Storm.

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
Rock n' Roll : Houses of the Holy- Led Zepplin
Classical: Pines of Rome, Boleró, Shostakovich 7

Favorite movie?
Star Wars Trilogies

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Mint Chocolate Chip

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I honestly have no idea! I would be interested in attending a university, playing trombone, but perusing a degree in the humanities.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
I've participated with the Marian Catholic High School Marching Band at the Indianapolis Super Regional and the Bands of America Grand National Championship for the past three years.

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I really love History. History is so interesting to me, and I often find myself sitting down with a good history book in my house or at the library. I was also a drum major in my middle school's marching band in 2014.

RyanL2RyanL

The thirty-ninth installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

KristenC

Name: Kristen Cale

Hometown: Vincent, OH

School Name: Warren High School

Section: Clarinet

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
I have always wanted to march in something bigger than what my school offers. Our band only has about 80 members, so it was exciting when I got the opportunity to audition for something quadruple our size. So I auditioned and got accepted!

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
Probably performing at Disneyland, but I am really excited about the parade itself.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
I have learned that if you do not work for what you want, you will never get it. I also have learned how to become a leader, I was not section/squad leader, but being a senior, I got to help out with the first year marchers a lot, or anyone who needed help. The third thing I have learned is self-discipline. Self-discipline is CRITICAL to marching band. You have to force yourself to not move at attention, and to move your body a certain way at a certain time.

Most memorable moment in band?
When we got a superior rating at State Marching Band Finals for the first time in eight years. It is my senior year, so it was really special to me and my class.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
Pep band, symphonic band, lessons with a professor at a college, art, and I was in choir up until this year.

What's your favorite book?
Harry Potter

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
George Szell Cleaveland Orchestra
Dvorak "Slavonic Dances No. 3"

Favorite movie?
Moana

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Cookie dough

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I plan on going to college for a major in Music Composition, and a minor in English and possibly Philosophy.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
Yes, BOA Grand Nationals. My school goes every other year since it is eight hours away. We went last year and was really fun!

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I got to name my second youngest brother!

KristenC2KristenC3

The thirty-eighth installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

JacobK

Name: Jacob Kopczyk

Hometown: Tinley, IL

School Name: Marian Catholic High School

Section: Trumpet

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
I wanted to be a part of the BOA Honor Band because of my love of music. I wanted to test myself against others that are considered to be the best of the best. I wanted to be a part of the internationally known Rose Bowl Parade and go to California, as I have never been there before.

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
Being in California and experiencing the Rose Bowl Parade from an inside perspective.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
Being on time, leadership skills, and learning what a truly inspiring performance is all about. 

Most memorable moment in band?
Being in the tunnel at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis waiting to perform in finals for Super Regionals last year has been my most memorable moment in band. At that point in time, I realized that I am so lucky to be a part of Marian Catholic High School's Band, as I would not have been at Super Regionals if I attended any other high school in my area.

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
I participate in Service Club. This is a group that goes out and does charitable acts for those less fortunate.

What's your favorite book?
I have more of a favorite series over a favorite book. My favorite series is the Harry Potter series, which I have read four times so far.

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
Frozen Cathedral by John Mackey

Favorite movie?
The Sorcerer's Apprentice

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Mint Chocolate Chip

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I want to go to college for a degree, possibly in engineering and/or music performance.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
Grand Nationals and Super Regionals (2015 and 2016).

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I was first chair in Symphonic Band at Marian Catholic High School my freshman year. I just earned first chair and section leader spot again for my sophomore year.

JacobK2

The thirty-seventh installment of a new series on the blog that we will be posting throughout the month of December. As some of you are aware, Music for All will be taking an Honor Band to the 2017 Rose Parade. Our members were selected by audition for the ensemble and come from all across the United States. We are looking forward to coming together for the first time as a band at the end of December and we hope this series will allow us all to get to know some (hopefully most!) of the members of this awesome ensemble!

ShannonL

Name: Shannon Lally

Hometown: Roselle, IL

School Name: Lake Park High School

Section: Dancer

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the band?
I decided to apply to be a part of the band after I was given the opportunity to audition last minute. I THOUGHT the opportunity was too great to pass up and that I had nothing to lose and everything to gain!

What part of the trip are you most excited about?
I am most excited to perform in the parade, as well as work with other people my age that are just as passionate about band and music as I am.

What are three things you've learned from being involved in band?
1. Leadership. Being a drum major has taught me how to manage a large group of people and help create something larger than myself.
2. Cooperation. Leaving problems and differences at home, and bringing your best self to rehearsal ultimately betters not only yourself, but the band as a whole.
3. Discipline. Knowing that I had practice later encouraged me to put down any distractions and finish all of my responsibilities. This built habits that continued even when I didn't have practice, allowing me to maximize my time.

Most memorable moment in band?
One of the most memorable moments in band was performing at Disney World on New Year's Eve. We were the last marching band of 2015 to perform!

Besides band, what are you involved in at school?
I am the president of Psychology Club and founder of the psychology tutoring program at my school. I am also on the varsity Winter Guard, and a member of National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Earth Club, and Senior Class Council. I also volunteer regularly at Feed My Starving Children.

What's your favorite book?
Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

What's your favorite song or piece of music?
Montagues and Capulets by Prokofiev and Fire Water Paper: A Vietnam Oratorio II. Scherzo by Elliot Goldenthal

Favorite movie?
Return of the Jedi and Titanic

Favorite ice cream flavor?
Peach

What's your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I hope to attend Northwestern University and study neuroscience and film production.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
BOA Indianapolis Super Regional '13, '14, '16
BOA Tennessee Regional '15
BOA Grand National Championships '13, '14, '15, '16
Drum Major Institute '16

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
I love to travel! I've been to 11 different countries so far.

ShannonL2ShannonL3

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