Band takes honors at large group contest

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 3/31/99.

On March 23, the Paynesville Area High School bands traveled to Dassel-Cokato for large group contests.

The junior band performed first, playing "National Emblem March" and "Aquara." Two out of the three judges gave them superior ratings (the highest given), with the third giving them excellent ratings.

The senior band performed at the top of their game. They started with a nice slow number called "Hymn for Band" and finished with a more difficult piece. The senior band received the highest scores possible.

"All three judges had great things to say about the bands and their musical abilities," Bryan Mara, band director, said. "One very notable comment that came from all three judges and a couple of spectators was how professional all our students were. The judges repeatedly commented on performance level and proper attentiveness."

"I was very proud of all my students that night," Mara added.

Choir receives top ratings at contest
The Paynesville Area High School choirs attended the large group contests at Dassel-Cokato on Tuesday, March 23, and received six stars, the highest rating possible to achieve.

The treble choir and mixed choir received superior ratings from all three judges. When a group receives a superior rating at the sub-section level, the group is also judged at the section (state) level. Both choirs received superior ratings at both levels. For each superior rating they receive a star. Therefore, both choirs received six stars, the highest rating possible, Cheryl Bungum, choir director, explained.

The choirs were judged on tone quality, intonation, rhythm, balance and blend, technique, interpretation, and diction.

Judge's comments ranged from: really nice group, keep up the good work to work for clean articulation. Really nice interpretation of number, very expressive faces, you work together very well, and fine dynamics, keep up the fine work on singing open vowels.

Another judge commented he had met Morten Lauridsen, composer of "Dirait-on." "He looks a bit like Grizzly Adams, but also is an exceptionally gentle man and your performance reflects the gentleness of his character and the inherent gentleman of this piece...well done," Kenneth Hodges.

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