By Kay Braddock
The Terry Schools Junior High Choir was among the dozen musical entries from the school earning superior ratings at the Middle School Music Festival in Sidney.
Close to a 1,000 students attended Saturday’s music festival, which includes Glendive and Sidney schools. Twenty of those students were from Terry. Within the district 9 of the 10 schools opted to attend the all day event.
“We’re actually very lucky, because most districts don’t put on a festival for middle school,” Terry Schools music instructor JoDee Hess said. “We have one of the strongest music districts in the state.”
Hess points to the Middle School Music Festival as to the reason why.
Giving young music students an opportunity to play in a judged environment provides the preparation they need in order to perform well in high school, Hess said. It’s also one of the main reasons music programs within the district are thriving.
Superior ratings received by Terry junior high students also included vocal and instrumental solos along with instrumental ensembles.
Four of the musical performances from Terry received an excellent-plus rating, suggesting they were “right on the cusp of being a superior,” Hess said.
Much of the young students desire to continue in the music program also lies at the feet of the adjudicator, Hess said. Common critiques at the junior high level include: Standing taller, breathing lower and watching the director more.
“(An adjudicator) is someone who gives good points and also gives constructive criticism that the student can build upon,” Hess said. Ultimately the adjudicator gives students direction as to why a rating was received, she added.
Superior ratings are noted with an I, while excellent ratings are represented with II. The results are as follows: Terry middle school band II, Terry junior high choir I, Valerie Greenfield II, Lane Stickel I, Helmuth / Loomis Vocal Duet II+, Terry Boys Vocal Quartet II+, Katelynn Mendenhall (vocal) II+, Katelynn mendenhall (Inst) I, Lane Stickel (inst) I, Travis Shannon I, Kelsey Grant I, Graceila Cadenas I, Layna Grue (inst) I, Helmuth/Luedtke Flute Duet I, Jason Loomis I, Kylie Helmuth I, Layna Grue (vocal) I, Grue / Loomis Vocal Duet II+
High school music students are preparing for their district music festival which is April 14-16. The state high school music festival is the first weekend in May.
Published Feb. 9, 2011