Area Music Program Nearly Sweeps Competition

By Ashley Doerzbacher

Published 05/01 2014 05:29PM

Updated 05/02 2014 05:43PM

ALTOONA - The Altoona Area High School music program is back in town after nearly cleaning house at competition over the weekend in Myrtle Beach.
"The competitions were kind of stressful at time but for the most part, we got over our nerves pretty quickly,” said Madeline DeAngelis, a senior band member. “Once we got on stage, we were like its go time, time to focus. Time to let the nerves go out the door and just focus."
The students performed and competed in 10 groups: Orchestra, String Ensemble, Concert Chorus, Women’s Choir, Vocal Ensemble, Concert Band, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Advanced Jazz Ensemble, and Marching Band.

Altoona took home nine first place victories, and won best overall in four out of five divisions. The awards are listed below.
"We worked really hard, put a lot of time and effort in,” said Randy Longwill, a senior band member. “Just being down there, being able to showcase what we're capable of, being able to represent Altoona well, it was just a great experience."
Drum Major Gabi Dancha said the band’s goal all year was winning at this competition. So when the group heard their names called, they say all the time and effort was well worth it.
"There was so much energy and everybody was so excited and we had really, really good schools against us it made winning that much more exciting," said Dancha.
For many of the band members, this was their final competition of their high school career. They're glad to leave on a high note.

Awards won by AAHS Music Department:
  • Wind Ensemble – 1st Place – Superior – Overall Concert Band Award
  • Concert Band – 1st Place – Excellent
  • Jazz Band – 1st Place – Excellent
  • Advanced Jazz Ensemble – 2nd Place – Superior
  • Marching Band – 1st Place – Superior – Overall Marching Band Award – Outstanding Auxiliary Award
  • String Ensemble – 1st Place – Excellent
  • Orchestra – 1st Place – Superior – Overall Orchestra Award
  • Women’s Choir – 1st Place – Superior
  • Concert Chorus – 1st Place – Superior
  • Vocal Ensemble – 1st Place – Superior-Overall Choral Award
  • Esprit de Corps Award – for all the ensembles combined

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