Bainbridge bands sweep in for 34th consecutive year of superior ratings

Published 4:06 pm Friday, March 8, 2019

Thursday and Friday the Georgia Bandmasters Association hosted a band festival at Southern Regional Technical College, where more than 20 bands showcased their best work for a musical evaluation.

Thursday evening the Bainbridge High School Concert Band and the Bainbridge High School Symphonic Band performed and earned superior ratings for the 34th consecutive year.

The Concert Band was directed by Will Parker and played a selection of three pieces: Allied Honor March by Karl King/Swearingen, In The Shining of the Stars by Robert Sheldon and Andromeda by David Shaffer.

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The Symphonic Band also played three selections and was directed by James Sewell. They played Cyrus the Great March by Karl King, Alleluia by Samuel Hazo and March of Percession and Bachus by Delibes/Clark.

Sewell explained they base their musical selections off of the standards set by the concert adjudicators, but they always make sure the music showcases the student’s amazing talents.

“We started practicing in January,” he said. “We spend a little over two months working on these tunes for our selection. We pick music that fits the caliber of the band and showcases all of their abilities; while still fine tuning the things they need to work on.”

This particular band festival is one of the band’s most important performances of the year, due to its evaluation. Sewell said it helps the program know what they are doing well and what they need to work on. He said it is how they evaluate their own program and see what they want to keep or change for next year.

The performances receive a rating of superior, excellent, good, fair or poor. Being rated superior is the highest score a band can receive and places the BHS bands among the very bands in the state. Sewell said he knows they are a superior group, and he is just tickled to death and all that hard work they have put in.

“Sometimes all the hard work band members put in goes unnoticed, but they set really high expectations for themselves and they don’t stop until they get it. Tonight that showed,” he said.

Sewell admits this year was a bit different working the Symphonic Band, while he was used to working with the middle school program, but in the end the goal was the same and he is proud of the hours and dedication the group has put in to make the performance a success.

“I am so proud of our band students at all three schools. They work very hard

to achieve so many wonderful things and to always excel at everything we ask them to do. It is truly an honor to work with these students, their parents, as well as our band staff and our band boosters organization,” Sewell said after the program.

The BHS Band will perform at a Brownbag event on April 23 and the BHS Jazz Band will give a concert on the Square on April 25. The Concert and Symphonic Bands will give their annual Spring Concert on May 7. Hutto and Bainbridge Middle School Bands will give their annual Spring Concert on May 14.