October 23, 2017

Students chosen to represent WHS at IMEA

by Chris Nush, Staff Reporter

Twenty-four students from the music department were selected to perform ensembles for the Illinois Music Educators Association’s (IMEA) district VII this fall.

After auditioning for IMEA, Kaitlyn Nielsen, senior, felt that her performance did not go as well as she hoped.

“It was a catastrophe,” Nielsen said. “I was disappointed because I missed a note in the scales.”

When she discovered she had been chosen for IMEA, she said she felt really excited.

Nine jazz band, 11 concert band, one orchestra and three concert choir players have been selected from WHS.

IMEA is a conference of music teachers in Illinois. The state is divided into nine districts and WHS is in district seven. Sixty-five high schools send their best in band, choir and orchestra. IMEA is the largest fine arts education organization in Illinois.

Students signed up in October to audition and received their music months in advance.

Nielsen participated in IMEA last year, and enjoyed meeting lots of new musicians and learning from them.

“I felt a lot more prepared because I had more time to practice. I knew more people beforehand, and I had the opportunity to work with an oboist that I met last year,” Nielsen said.

According to Alex Meza, orchestra director, IMEA requires perseverance from all.

“It consists of students working really really hard for long periods of time,” Meza said.

The judges choose which piece they want each student to perform. This year, orchestra will use Tchiakovsky’s Symphony No. 4 Final.

Adam Korber, senior, said that the final concert is the best part of IMEA because “you are playing with some of the best musicians in the area.”

“I know it’s one heck of an experience to be involved in,” Korber said.

Students usually receive little help from their directors. Material for their auditions are handed out as soon as possible.

Directors help students find private teachers and material for auditioning.

“The students take on the responsibility,” Meza said. “The top students put together this band and make this festival.”

The concert groups performed Nov. 10 at Glenbrook North High School.

The jazz band and orchestra will perform Saturday, Nov. 17 at Lake Zurich.

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