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The Aquilian

Music students travel to Florida to compete nationally

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The band and choir had to chance to do some fun activities while in Florida, including a trip to Epcot.

Two weeks ago, members of Gonzaga’s band and choir took a trip to Disney World in Florida to compete in the competitions of Festival Disney. 

“The trip was really successful; it was the first time since covid that the band had been able to compete, and we received a rating of excellent,” said Liam Slater ‘24, president of the symphonic band.

 This was the band’s first competition in multiple years. Gonzaga’s Band played a repertoire of three songs “Festivo”, “Salvation Is Created” and “Liberty Bell”. The band received a rating of excellent in the Double A Division. 

“I think the best part was the culture that we built, and the investment that we made in the connections and relationships that we have as a group,” said Mr. Andrew Wood ‘12, band director.

On the trip, band and choir members got to build connections by spending days at Epcot, Illumination Studios, Magical Kingdom and riding Hollywood Studio’s Tower of Terror. 

“I hear you guys play all the time, but I miss a little bit and have some blind spots. It was helpful for someone to say to think about this part and think of the music this way,” Mr. Wood said.

After the competition, the band received feedback from college professors on how to improve our playing skills. This feedback has been implemented in class and is helping to improve the band.

“It also is helpful because it gives us some new ideas that I haven’t thought about as well as reinforces what we were already working on in class,” said Ms. Dunn, choir director.

The choir also competed and received feedback from the professors, and competed in the Tenor Bass High School group, receiving an amazing rating of superior. 

Hayden Wierzba ‘24 and JP Howard ‘24 had amazing performances winning Outstanding Vocal Soloists awards for the competition.

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