This Year’s Festivals
We will be sponsoring six festivals during the course of this school year. A big thank you goes out to all our host directors, without you we would not have a festival. You can download student and director applications on our web site or wait for the contact e-mail from your host. The festivals and hosts are as follows:
Senior High Chorus: Nov. 14-15th at Derry Area HS, host Melody Vigo, guest conductor- Daniel Shaw.
Senior High Band: Dec. 5-6th at Franklin Regional HS, host Kevin Pollock, guest conductor Scott Koter
Junior High Chorus: March 14th at Franklin Regional HS, hosts Denise McMullan and Lauren Bloomer, guest conductor- Kelly Newstead.
Junior High Band: March 21-22nd at Mt. Pleasant HS, hosts Fred Collins and Erin Blystone, guest conductor-Reed Chamberlin
6th Grade Chorus: April 4th at Southmoreland HS, host Meghan Whytsell, guest conductor-Tom Octave
5th and 6th Grade Band: May 2nd at Jeannette HS, guest conductor-Annette Russell
Please respect all deadlines for applications, registration fees, medical forms and any other important paperwork. Nothing is more frustrating for a host then bugging colleagues for paperwork. Please offer your help and especially a big “thank you” when the festival is over. We all have lots of demands on our shoulders and these folks have stepped up to do this for our kids on top of their normal duties!
25 Year Award Winners
Congratulations to Carla DellaPenna (Jeannette SD), Karl Priore (Kiski SD) and Steve Tribble (Greensburg SD) for your 25 years of service! On behalf of WCMEA we all thank you and wish you the best school year yet!
Our billboard “Music is Medicine for the Mind” is still located on Route 22. A new company bought out the billboard group that helped us so much and as of right now, our deal is the same.
Scholarship Recipients 2012-13
Our scholarship winners last year were for chorus Rachel Read (Penn Trafford) and for band Taylor Gephart (Southmoreland).
Unspent Scholarship Monies
After taking suggestions at every festival meeting, a committee met this summer to put together a proposal to use unspent scholarship monies from the past years. Their proposal was to offer a $500 scholarship to a Westmoreland county resident music education major (who can be attending any college for music education). Students must submit an application with an essay, lesson plan and transcript to apply. The officers will meet to choose a winner. One of scholarship winners in high school can win this award as well. This was voted on and approved.
Nominations for VP
- From Denise: this year we will be taking nominations for the VP position starting in October 2014. This person will serve as VP for two years, president for two and past president for two. In this day and age, we all understand that a school district will not let you out to attend all festival meetings, and as officers we split the duties to attend festivals and selection committee meetings. Personally, I have really enjoyed my time as an officer and meeting everyone! If you have questions about the position or what is involved, please ask!
First a big thank you goes out to Dan Lauritzen who took care of our web site for years! We really appreciate your service to our organization. This year, when discussing format and material included, Jaime West took Dan’s hard work and moved it into a new web hosting site. There are great new features, including a Google calendar that you can sync to your phone and online payment of dues (next year!). If you have pictures that don’t have students’ faces up close or permission from students’ parents, submit those to Jaime West to be included!
Online Payment of Dues Starting 2014
For all the members who pay their own dues, we are offering an online option next year. Since we will be charged a fee for this service, online dues will cost $16 (one dollar fee). This will be through PayPal. This was voted on and approved by the membership.
25 Year Award Wording
This year we had a question about the 25 year award and its qualifications. We noticed there was not anything in our bylaws about it. A discussion was held regarding the wording at the meeting and it was decided to take this to the festival meetings this year, gather suggestions and form a committee to put something together this summer. If you want to be a part of this committee, contact Denise Bilott or Ray Hammill.
WCMEA Concert in the Park
On Saturday, May 31, 2014 from 1-5PM, we will have a WCMEA concert in the park. We are looking for performing groups from any grade level from K through collegiate in band, chorus and orchestra of any size or genre. You will have a 15-20 minute time slot to perform. We are also looking for any booster groups for concession stand sales. Each group will sell one item (nachos, bottled water, hot dogs etc.) for a $20 table fee. At this point, we are just looking for interested groups and in the winter we will organize this in much greater detail. The officers plan on promoting this in all possible venues to get PR for all our programs and everything we do throughout the year. The forms are on our web site and will also be sent via e-mail. If you have any questions, please contact Denise Bilott.
- Seton Hill University is offering their Seton Hill Youth Honors Band and Seton Hill Youth Honors JAZZ Band. Forms and audition selections are on the web site. It was also announced that a new Seton Hill High School Honors Band will start this year. Any student that would like to be in Junior High District Band at Norwin and Seton Hill Youth Honors band/jazz band may do so. We are also working on a collaboration with Jamey Aebersold, he will be doing a workshop with the district band teachers Saturday morning and then working with the Seton Hill honors jazz kids that afternoon.
- Information was sent earlier regarding the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra’s concert for young people. Funding has become an issue for bussing and tickets for many districts.