The Elizabeth Davis Advanced Band received straight superior ratings this season. Not only did each of the four judges at the 2014 State Assessment at Goochland High School award them the highest rating, but so did all of the college band directors as judges at the 2014 Dixie Classic Festival, and the 2014 Hershey Festival in Hershey, Pa.
This is the first time in brief six-year history that not a single judge rated the Advanced band less than Superior.
“This just goes to show that hard work does pay off,” says Michael Bailey, Alto Sax player in the group.
The 2014 band and its membership are the third inductee into the Elizabeth Davis Middle School Band Hall of Fame, a prestigious honor at the school. To qualify, the band must receive three overall superior ratings in three different adjudicated performances within the same year. The bands of 2010 and 2011 also received this honor.
Bringing home the Middle East
Chester native and Carver Middle and L.C. Bird High School alumni, Megan Madison, visits the students of Elizabeth Davis Middle School Band to help them understand music of the Middle East. Madison, a former flute student of band director, Jon Schoepflin, not only shared what her life is like in Amman, Jordan, but also what her students do at the National Music Conservatory there. She also shared some of the work she is doing in a non-governmental organization (NGO) she started that helps refugees from Syria have shelter.
Seventh grade students Karson Jennings and Devin Collins were excited to learn that they could actually help these refugees who have left their home.
“We could help raise the $700 it takes to shelter one family,” says Jennings. “That’s easy.” said Collins.
By the end of her presentation, students were playing their Major scales and with Madison’s help, they played them again in “Arabic” style.
“Music is something that has been part of my life for as long as I can remember,” said Madison. “These students will continue to improve as long as they decide to never quit working. Look at me. I started in band 16 years ago and now I teach music on the other side of the world.”