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Oak Hill Middle Band Students Selected to Participate in Midfest

Fourteen band students from Oak Hill Middle traveled to the University of Georgia in Athens from December 8th through the 10th after being selected as participants in the UGA Middle School Band Festival known as MidFest.

The students auditioned and were placed in one of 8 bands conducted by premier music educators and directors from across the country. They joined their respective bands Friday morning and met for 3 two-hour rehearsals over the course of Friday and Saturday. Saturday afternoon, they performed a concert in the Hugh Hodgson Concert Hall at the UGA School of Music for hundreds of parents, directors, friends, and family.

This is the first time in many years students from Oak Hill have earned this honor. MidFest began in 1990 as the middle school version of the already established January High School Music Festival, or JanFest.

Students attending and pictured in front of the iconic UGA Arch are Front Row (L-R): Gabriela Asbury, Trumpet; Kimberly DeLeon, Clarinet; Triston Horne, Trumpet; Jamya Simmons, Saxophone; Greisy Perez and Azul Martinez, Flute. Back Row (L-R) Taylor Myrick, Clarinet; Charmise Thurmond, Flute; Samiyah Todd, Clarinet; Imani Moore, Trombone; Kiersten Stanley, Tuba; Kaden Guy, Trumpet; Jordan Torrance, Trombone; Charmarcus Thurmond, Trumpet.

The students heard performances by three premiere middle school bands across Georgia. They also heard the UGA Wind Symphony that is composed of musicians across all majors at the University. The conductors and staff made a point to encourage students and parents to continue musical pursuits throughout high school, college, and in adult life emphasizing they do not have to major in music to continue performing. The students also were able to meet Tylan Davis, a senior trombone player in the Wind Symphony and the Redcoat Marching Band. Tylan is a 2019 Alum of Baldwin High School and attended Oak Hill Middle School. He is a music education major and will be student teaching this spring.

While the students spent many hours in rehearsal, the experience wasn't all music and performances. The students, directors, and chaperones were able to enjoy meals together in Athens, a walk through downtown, and a tour of the UGA campus with lots to do and fun together. They even celebrated the birthday of Triston Horne, one of the newest members of the Oak Hill Band.

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