The Music for All Blog
The Music for All Blog
 

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Music for All has rescheduled the Bands of America Regional Championship that was scheduled for October 8 in North Carolina for October 15, at Wake Forest University.

We'll return with a BOA Championship at Wake Forest for the third consecutive year. The date was originally published as October 8, but after the recent release of Wake Forest's football schedule and home game on that date, the NC Championship was moved to October 15, still at Wake Forest, a date which BOA had on hold.

The Bands of America Championship at Wake Forest in Winston-Salem, NC is now confirmed, for October 15. 2016.

We hope to see you at the 2016 Bands of America Regional Championship at Winston-Salem, NC on October 15th.

View Full Fall Schedule here.

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Congratulations to one of our favorite volunteers, Paige Rauschuber, for receiving the Indiana Music Educators Association Outstanding Future Music Educator Award! 

Paige, originally from Louisiana, has been involved in music since she picked up the saxophone in 4th grade. She fell in love with the instrument and practiced every day during recess. In 6th grade her family moved to Indiana and she became a part of Mr. Josh Weirich’s middle school concert band program. Mr. Weirich was also a saxophonist and would often play for the class. 

After witnessing her director's talent and enthusiasm to teach, Paige became inspired to become a music educator herself. Ten years later, Paige is only a few months shy of graduating with a degree in Music Education and plans to impact her students in a similar way. 

The IMEA Outstanding Future Music Educator Award is given annually to a NAfME collegiate member who is nominated by a music instructor for his or her dedication to teaching and involvement in the organization. Paige has been an active member of Butler University's NAfME Collegiate Chapter for four years and has served on the executive board for two. She was nominated for this award by one of her professors, and after filling out an application detailing her involvement with NAfME, her teaching experiences, and the other ways she's given back to music, she was selected for the award.

"I'm incredibly humbled to have received this award and I owe it all to the fantastic music educators that I have had over the years, the teachers who have allowed me to work in their classrooms and have mentored me, as well as my incredible family who have always been extremely supportive of me and my dreams of one day being a music educator," said Paige.

Paige started volunteering with Music for All during her Freshman year of college. She helped coordinate the Music for All National Festival and decided to come back to every other event we've hosted near Indianapolis ever since. During the summers she's spent her time at the Music for All Summer Symposium as a part of the SWAG team, a group of counselors who make sure the camp runs smoothly and all the campers have positively life-changing experiences. In the fall Paige has helped out numerous times with our Indianapolis Super Regional Marching Championship and Grand National Championships. 

"The best part of volunteering with Music for All is the people I have gotten to know and taking part in the wonderful experiences that MFA creates for its students," said Paige. "My favorite memories have been when serving as part of the SWAG team because I remember how the SWAGs at camp impacted me when I attended Summer Symposium as a student and to know that I could have the same impact on someone else is an incredible feeling."

Post-graduation Paige aspires to find a job teaching Elementary General Music. Some of her goals include instilling a love for music like her teachers did, helping them recognize their fullest potential and teaching them the job in pursuing music in life, as either a career or a hobby. 

"There is so much that can be taught through music that extends beyond the four walls of a classroom. I learned so much through my music teachers over the years about leadership, how to treat others, and simply how to live a life that you can look back on and be proud of," said Paige. "If I can do that for my students I will consider myself to be a successful teacher."

We wish Paige the best in her future endeavors and hope that she continues to be a part of the MFA family. 

"I have grown so much as a musician, educator, and person because of Music for All and can honestly say that I would not be who I am today had it not been for this organization."

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Registration is now live for the 2016 Music for All Summer Symposium, presented by Yamaha, June 27- July 2!

This positively life-changing week-long summer camp is aimed to provide students and directors opportunities to learn from highly regarded music educators from across the nation and boost leadership skills that tailor to success in all areas of life.

Music for All is committed to creating a unique camp experience for every student, offering seven different divisions including:

  • Marching Band
  • Color Guard
  • Percussion
  • Concert Band
  • Orchestra 
  • Jazz Band
  • Drum Major

New to camp this year is a Middle School Concert Band Division! Directors and new music educators are also invited to join us for the Summer Camp Directors' Academy for a week of innovative tailored professional development. 

Lastly, don't miss out on Leadership Weekend on June 25-26, 2016 to "Kick It In" with Fran Kick and other leadership experts. You'll gain skills and strategies to becoming an example for your peers and colleagues. 

You can find more information and register by visiting our new MFA Summer Symposium website at http://camp.musicforall.org/.

The deadline for the Super Saver Discount has been extended to February 29, 2016.

We hope to see you there! If you have further questions, please call Music for All at 800.848.2263.

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Registration is now live for the Festival Directors’ Academy at the 2016 Music for All National Festival, presented by Yamaha, March 10-12, in Indianapolis.

Read on for more details, or, if you're ready, you can register now.

This incredible opportunity for current and future music educators offers connection with iconic music educators, and observation of many of the nation’s most outstanding concert ensembles. Directors will have small-group instruction with:

Gary Green
Gary Hill
James Keene
H. Robert Reynolds
Scott Weiss

…as well as networking time with Festival evaluators and performing ensemble directors during special sessions and social events.

You’ll find the link to register today, plus a reminder of the details of this new program and the incredible roster of presenters, on the Festival Directors’ Academy page. The deadline to register is February 15, 2016.

This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the Music for All National Festival, and the inaugural Festival Directors’ Academy. We hope to see you there! If you have further questions, please call Music for All's Education department staff at 800.848.2263.

Music for All Announces 2018 National Choir Festival

Thursday, 14 January 2016 13:27 Written by Erin Fortune

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Music for All will add programs for choir in 2018 with the premiere of the Music for All National Choir Festival, at the 2018 Music for All National Festival, presented by Yamaha, in Indianapolis. The Music for All National Choir Festival will be an integral part of Music for All’s ongoing mission to create, provide, and expand positively life-changing experiences through music for all. Henry Leck, Founder and Artistic Director of the famed Indianapolis Children’s Choir, has joined as Artistic Director of the Music for All National Choir Festival. Lori Lobsiger and Kim Mann, leaders in choral event programming and past producers of the World Choir Games, have joined Music for All as program consultants for the new MFA National Choir Festival.

“It’s extremely exhilarating to be involved in this new choral initiative and with an organization of such high caliber,” said Henry Leck, Artistic Director. “I look forward to bringing many talented choirs from all over the nation to the festival to further music education and help students experience the magic that Music for All offers with all of its programs.”

The new National Choir Festival is a non-competitive experience for outstanding high school and youth choirs, of both treble and mixed voices, to celebrate musical excellence and provide opportunities for growth and learning. The Festival offers an opportunity for each ensemble to receive recorded and written evaluation of its performance from a knowledgeable audience of music educators and fellow choir members. The festival also incorporates master classes led by world-renowned musicians and top applied faculty, as well as social events that give students the chance to network with colleagues, guest artists and icons of music education. At the end of the festival, students, directors, parents, staff and evaluators will attend a Gala Awards Banquet where all ensembles are recognized for their participation.

“Music for All is excited to take this next logical step in support of and advocacy for scholastic music education,” said Eric L. Martin, President and CEO of Music for All. “For 40 years we have created and provided programs supporting, elevating and advocating for the availability and excellence of instrumental music instruction in our schools and nation. Expanding our commitment to choral music fulfills requests of MFA alumni and music educators from across the nation, as well as Music for All’s vision to ensure that every child across America has access to the benefits of quality scholastic music education offerings.”

The 2018 MFA National Choir Festival will be held March 15-17. This year, 2016, marks the 25th anniversary of the Music for All National Festival, presented by Yamaha, which currently includes concert bands, orchestras, percussion ensembles, chamber ensembles, and three national honor ensembles – the Honor Band of America, Honor Orchestra of America, and Jazz Band of America. A full schedule of Festival ensemble concerts, times, and locations for the upcoming 2016 Festival to be held in Indianapolis, March 10-12, will be available at www.musicforall.org/festival.

 

Download the Music for All National Choir Festival Brochure.

#tbt Being Part of the Band Then and Now

Thursday, 17 December 2015 15:15 Written by Lloyd Hinnant

Lloyd Hinnant, Rocky Mount Senior H.S., NC alumni (class of 1984) shares his experience on what it was like attending this year’s Bands of America Grand National Championships with his son Grayson, who’s a part of the Green Hope H.S., NC Marching Band, and reliving his own experience of his band becoming Grand National Champion in 1983. 

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The euphoria of achieving everything you had worked toward for three years was unbelievable. The Rocky Mount Senior H.S. Marching Band competed at the Bands of America Grand National Championships in 1981 and 1982, but it wasn’t until 1983 that we achieved our greatest potential and became Bands of America Grand National Champion. I still get goose bumps and tear up thinking about it. All the “set it up, do it again's, trips, and bonds you build with your band mates are something that I cherish because not everyone gets to experience that high of emotions. 

This year my son Grayson and the Green Hope H.S. Marching Band went to Grand National Championships and I was flooded with nostalgia. Not only was my son about to compete on the same national stage I had 32 years earlier, but his band was competing against some of the same schools my band competed against. 

Though his band didn’t make it to Finals, they left everything on the field and performed like champions. I couldn’t have been more proud and I’m excited to see where this growing marching band program will go in upcoming years. 

Looking back on my experience, both competing then and supporting now, I’ve come to the conclusion that being a part of the marching band taught me three things – 

  • Dedication - knowing your goals
  • Determination - willing to work your hardest
  • Discipline – developing a plan and working on it while learning from your mistakes

Being involved in music has also taught me that having a positive attitude and demonstrating teamwork can help you achieve a goal. I remember those hot summer days on a paved parking lot learning our drill and only one person would complain about the heat before several others would confront that person about adjusting their attitude. 

For those students who are currently involved in different musical ensembles and groups, take time to enjoy the moments and memories you make during your high school band years. Work hard, dream big, and do everything you can to achieve your objectives! You may not achieve every single one, but you will be so much better for at least trying. 

Remember the motto - “If it is to be, it is up to me!”

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The Story Behind Our Fall Championship Wall

Wednesday, 16 December 2015 16:26 Written by Matt Mackowiak

The Midwest Clinic, starting today, marks a busy time for everyone here at Music for All as we prepare for our upcoming events. It has been an annual tradition to announce our upcoming Fall Championship schedule on the first day. We look forward to yet another sensational season as we gear up for 2016! 

Since moving to Indianapolis in 2004, Music for All has started a tradition of hanging a photo of our most recent Bands of America Grand Champion on our “Fall Championship Wall”. The wall has everything from the humble beginning when Bands of America was our Summer National Championships, to all of the stadiums we hosted Grand Nationals in, to the faces over the years, and of course our Champions. Lawrence Central H.S., IN was honorable number one in 2004 with their 2004 “La Rosa” (fun fact, Lawrence Central won Grand Nationals without winning a single caption!).

Fall Wall

With our 40th anniversary and 2015 Grand Nationals in the book, it is time for the annual tradition and changing of the guard. We salute our 2014 Grand National Champion, Tarpon Springs H.S., FL, as they had the honor and prestige of hanging up in the office for a year. Now we make room for our 2015 Grand National Champion, Broken Arrow H.S., OK. 

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Don’t worry; those photos don’t go to waste, as we still recognize all Champions on our “Wall of Champions”. Every year we look forward to adding to our collection of memories and building on the rich tradition and history that is the Bands of America Grand National Championships.

Wall of Champions

Will we see you this upcoming fall for a BOA Regional, Super Regional, or our Grand National Championships? We want you and your school to be a part of our history. You never know - your school might be the next band featured in the office as the 2016 Grand National Champion!

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The Bands of America Hall of Fame recognizes individuals who have had a positively life-changing impact on Music for All’s Bands of America programs, participants, and music education. 2016 inductees were announced during the Finals of the 2015 Bands of America Grand National Championships, presented by Yamaha, Saturday, November 14th, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. 

Music for All has announced the industry leaders who will be inducted into the 2016 Bands of America Hall of Fame: Frank Bischoff and Frank Troyka. 

Frank Bischoff has been one of the most familiar faces of Bands of America for more than four decades, serving as the dean of BOA’s front sideline field and timing and penalty management.  Frank has been a contributor through the years in the development and evolution of Bands of America’s show operational rules, as we migrated from a posture of rule enforcement to one that emphasizes smooth operations and field management designed to embrace performance creativity in a safe and fair competitive environment. 

Frank is a living encyclopedia of Bands of America rules and an active contributor to the BOA’s Adjudication Handbook rules committee.  Through his proactive approach of working with bands to comply with the rules while achieving their creative objectives, Frank has helped transform a “historically “got you” role and approach to one that embraces and actualizes our “positively life-changing experience” attitude, and environment.

Frank has been on the field for more than 150 Bands of America Regional and Grand National events, logging more than 2,500 hours of on-field service in support of BOA and the pageantry arts in America.  Beyond Bands of America, Frank has also loaned his services and expressed his passion for the marching arts to drum and bugle corps shows and color guard competitions. While he gladly served all over the Midwest for drum corps and color guard contests (including Winter Guard International) in the late 70's and 80's, Frank’s passion has always been for band through his association with Bands of America events (since 1976), the Illinois State University “Band Day” (since 1977), and the Lake Park “Lancer Joust” (since 1981).

Frank Troyka began his career in 1984 as an assistant band director in Richardson, Texas’ Forest Meadow Junior High School and Lake Highlands High School. In 1991, Frank moved to Houston where he taught in the Spring ISD serving as assistant director to Philip Geiger at Westfield High School. In 1999 Frank joined the faculty of Cypress Falls High School in the Cypress-Fairbanks ISD as its Director of Bands. During his year-seven tenure, the Cypress Falls Band was a featured ensemble at The Midwest Clinic, the Music For All National Festival, and was the recipient of the Sudler Flag of Honor. Frank moved back to Richardson in the summer of 2006 when he assumed the role of Director of Bands and Coordinator of Fine Arts at L.V. Berkner High School.

A teacher for over 30 years, Frank Troyka has been a part of and served Bands of America in almost every capacity possible. He has been a participating director in our Fall and Spring events and sent dozens of students to our national and regional summer camp and leadership experiences. He has been a clinician at the Summer Symposium, led the Symposium’s Marching Band track, and served on the staff of each Bands of America’s Honor Bands in the Tournament of Roses Parade. He has also demonstrated his support and passion for the organization with volunteer service on the Bands of America Fall Programming Advisory Committee.  From 1997 to 1998, Frank was Bands of America’s Director of Events, bringing educator supportive initiatives and approaches to our operating model.  Frank coordinated Bands of America’s first European Honor Band experience, leading more than 70 students, faculty, chaperones and guests on a tour that included performances in France, The Netherlands, Germany and the World Association for Symphonic Bands & Ensemble (WASBE) conference in Austria. 

Since retiring in 2014, Mr. Troyka has been a clinician for the Wind Bands Association of Singapore, The Midwest Clinic and an active lecturer and clinician, presenting annual student leadership workshops in Texas and across the nation. 

Music for All will induct these newest members into the Bands of America Hall of Fame on Saturday, March 12, 2016 during the Music for All National Festival in Indianapolis. They will be permanently recognized in the Bands of America Hall of Fame at Music for All’s Indianapolis headquarters, along with all the BOA Hall of Fame members inducted since the first in 2003.

Bands of America Hall of Fame Members

2015
Remo D. Belli
Richard L. Saucedo
Mark Jolesch 
Dr. Nicholas Valenziano

2014
Eugene Migliaro Corporon
Fred and Marlene Miller
Camilla M. Stasa

2013
James Campbell
Bruce Dinkins
Vic Firth (1930-2015)

2012
Chuck Campbell
Chuck Henson
Stu and Sharon Holzer

2011
Debbie Laferty Asbill
Richard Floyd
Michael Rubino

2010
Anthony Maiello
L. Scott McCormick
H. Robert Reynolds

2009
James F. Keene
Norman Ruebling

2008
Marie Czapinski
Colonel Arnald Gabriel
Alfred Watkins

2007
Gary Green
Michael Kumer
Wayne Markworth

2006
Ray E. Cramer
Gary Markham
George N. Parks (1953-2010)

2005
Greg Bimm
Bob Buckner
Richard and Gayle Crain

2004
Tim Lautzenheiser
Tom McLeRoy (1929–2003)
Kenneth M. Snoeck

2003
Col. Truman W. Crawford (1934–2003)
Frederick Fennell (1914–2004)
L.J. Hancock (1952–2002)
Larry McCormick
John P. Paynter (1929–1996)
Dr. William D. Revelli (1902–1994)

The Patrick John Hughes Parent Booster Award recognizes the extraordinary commitment, dedication, support and sacrifice of music parents and boosters across the nation by shining a spotlight on a recipient who exemplifies these qualities.

The award is named in honor of Patrick John Hughes, the father of Patrick Henry Hughes. Patrick Henry is a remarkable young man who, despite physical challenges that would seem overwhelming to many, has excelled as a musician and student, singing and playing piano and trumpet with the Louisville Marching and Pep Bands, with the help of his father, who tirelessly maneuvers his son’s wheelchair through the formations with the other 220+ members of the Cardinal Marching Band.

On Friday night during Grand Nationals the 2015 Patrick John Hughes Parent Booster award was awarded to Derek Greer of Owasso, OK. 

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Every winner of the Patrick John Hughes Parent/Booster Award shares the common traits of selflessness, savvy, and passion to better the band. Derek Greer of Owasso, Okla., is no different, but his desire to help others has extended beyond the barriers of the school to touch the life of a young band alumna with a life-threatening condition. Greer and his wife April began working with the Owasso Band Patrons of the Pride of Owasso band when their eldest son Nate entered the program in the fall of 2006. They became mainstay volunteers, working in the pit crew, selling at concession stands, and sponsoring events.  

“Derek and April have always been involved with the band, giving of their time and efforts in every way imaginable...and now, unimaginable,” said Cindy Craft, Owasso Band Director. 

While chaperoning a band trip Greer met band member Yennifer Gutierrez. He noticed she was ill and later learned she was battling lupus, an autoimmune condition that greatly impacted her life. While the two didn’t develop a close relationship at that time Derek didn’t forget her. 

In 2011, he ran across a Facebook page Gutierrez created seeking help to find a kidney donor. Lupus had attacked her kidneys, leading her to dialysis to stay alive. Moved by a childhood friend who had received a life- saving kidney donation, Derek jumped into action, going through the initial tests and screenings to learn if he was a match. 

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“It came as no surprise when we heard Derek had volunteered to donate his kidney to help save Yennifer’s life,” said Owasso Band Patrons Club co-presidents Pam & Rob Braisted. 

But his generosity alone wasn’t enough. He wasn’t a match.

Despite the setback he was still determined to help, agreeing to join the Paired-Donation registry with Gutierrez. This program lists a willing donor and recipient together to be matched with another incompatible pair. His quick and selfless decision to join the registry led to the kidney she needed. 

In 2014, Greer and Gutierrez were notified they were compatible with a Texas pair. Despite the fact Greer had undergone shoulder surgery in the months prior, complete with a scary moment of recovery when he momentarily stopped breathing during rehabilitation, he returned to the hospital with Gutierrez.

They underwent the transplant process in the summer of 2014. Gutierrez received the kidney of Texas band mom Susan Clark, while Greer’s kidney was donated to a man in Texas. Theirs was the first paired kidney donation surgery for the state of Oklahoma. Although The transplant programs at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas and Baylor All Saints Medical Center in Fort Worth have together performed nearly 3,000 kidney transplants since the kidney transplant program began in 1985, theirs was the first paired kidney donation surgery that Baylor performed.

The surgeries were a success, with Yennifer so far making great progress with her new kidney Susie, which she named after her donor.

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Despite Greer’s own recovery period, he didn’t miss a beat with a band.

“Derek is on the mend and right back to work with the Pride of Owasso,” said Ammie Sullivent, a Owasso Band Patrons member who also nominated him for the award.

As an engineer his skillset has been well utilized by the band through the years.

“He has created innovative designs for much of our equipment and has spent countless hours constructing them,” said David Gorham, Owasso High School’s retired band director. 

The Greers participation as band boosters hasn’t waivered. Their son and daughter Natalie graduated from the program, and daughter Noelle is currently a member.

“It takes a special kind of compassion and patience to be with one activity for almost ten years, but the Greers have never shown any sign of regret in their involvement. Their efforts are truly inspiring,” said Maggie Matheny, Student Band Council President. 

“The dedication Mr. Greer has provided to the stakeholders of the Owasso Band program has raised everyone to the next level of musicianship, success, and humanity,” said Chris Barber, Associate Director of the Owasso High School Band.” For lack of better words, Mr. Greer is the Batman of band parents, always waiting for the beacon.” 

Even in talks of nomination for this award Mr. Greer remained humble.“Derek expressed his hope that it would be a great way to raise awareness for paired donation, leading to more donor matches,” said Shawn O’Kelley, Assistant Director of Bands at Owasso High School.

But his participation in just one match will be felt for a lifetime by Gutierrez.

“Derek Greer is an amazing man,” she wrote on her Facebook page following the transplant. “It’s because of his choice to stick with me for the past three years, that I have received my Gift of Life.”

Read more about Patrick John Hughes and his family and the Parent/Booster Award and find out how to nominate the exceptional parent or booster in your music program here.

Rebecca Palmer, alumna of Henry Clay High School in Lexington, KY and Music for All programs, tells us first-hand about her experience with the Bands of America Honor Band that marched in the 2013 Rose Parade®

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It was my first day in California for the Rose Parade® and we were getting fitted for uniforms. We were all waiting in line and talking with the other students, it was so interesting because I met someone from Alaska on one side of me and someone from the South on the other side of me. Also, one of the drum majors was going up and down the whole line memorizing everyone’s name, instrument and favorite color or food, which was pretty impressive! Just the immediate chemistry between everyone was astounding.

We had many rehearsals over the next week, but the one that sticks out most is the last rehearsal for the parade. We started with a fun dance warm-up and then after that we had the most impressive rehearsal I have ever been a part of. They had taped off the parade corner and we only had a handful of hours to master the turn. The work ethic from my fellow band members was outstanding. After every set, we all sprinted back and you could just feel the energy everyone was putting into the rehearsal. I remember the directors telling us to slow down and pace ourselves but everyone was so dedicated that we just wanted to go all out so we could be the best we could possibly be. 

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The day of the parade came and I couldn’t believe it. Along the route there was a spot where we went under a bridge and all of the sound echoed back on the band and it blocked everything else out. To just be so immersed in the marching and the music and to be surrounded by so many people I had grown close with was an amazing feeling.

My happiest memory from the Rose Parade® was at the end of the parade route when we stopped and played “Firework” one last time. The drum line started dancing and that energy trickled down to the rest of the band. By the end of the song we were all jumping around and playing our hearts out. We were all so proud of what we accomplished, and to have that moment together of just pure joy brought tears to my eyes. 

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Being a part of the 2013 Bands of America Honor Band in the Rose Parade® helped me as a musician because I got to work with talented instructors like Matt Harloff, who really brings the best out of anyone he directs. Also, I developed a much greater appreciation for playing music as a group because it was amazing how everyone focusing beyond their own sound improved our overall sound. In life, it showed me how much more effective you can be when everyone gives it their all. The dedication and passion that was exhibited in this group was something that I haven’t experienced since because it was just that strong. It truly demonstrated to me what teamwork means and that is something I will always hold near and dear to my heart.

I was a member of the Bands of America Honor Band almost three years ago and it truly changed how I view music and band. Though I have not pursued a career in music, this experience is one I will never forget and Music for All helped make my high school band experience incredible. I still regularly talk to some of the people I met in California as part of the Rose Parade® and we are from all over the U.S. (Texas, Iowa, Indiana, Kentucky, to name a few). It’s great that when people from this unique group are traveling across the U.S. they will post in our Facebook group and see if people can meet up every so often. Music for All really provided me with a second band family through this Rose Parade experience and I am truly thankful for that. In fact, my younger sister plays clarinet and is applying to become a member of the Bands of America Honor Band marching at the 2017 Rose Parade®! I hope she makes it so I can go to California and remember my experience again by cheering on her ensemble!

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If you are interested in marching with the Bands of America Honor Band at the 2017 Rose Parade®, applications are still be accepted until January 15, 2016. Learn more and apply at http://www.musicforall.org/what-we-do/tor-honor-band/tor-honor-band.

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