Students from Lincoln County High School and Blanche Elementary applied to be accepted into the 40th annual University of Tennessee at Martin Honor Band in the fall with seven local students accepted.

Musicians accepted were Barbie Haley, senior trumpet; Kanin Corbin, junior French horn; Taylor Slayton, sophomore tuba; Michael Morales, sophomore percussion; Evelyn Warden, freshman saxophone; Wyatt Lozier, eighth grade trumpet; and Karson Smith, eighth grade baritone sax.

Students left early on Thursday morning to travel to Martin to audition for chair placements. All LCHS students placed in the first or second chair of their respective ensemble, and Wyatt Lozier of Blanche placed fifth out of 20 chairs in the junior high band. Unfortunately, Kanin Corbin and Karson Smith were unable to attend.

Students were able to study with university faculty and guest clinicians, such as Dr. Scott Jones (Ohio University), Joel Denton (former Ooltewah director of bands) and John Oelrich (UTM director of bands) and composers CJ Barrow, Josh Spaulding, Aaron Perrine and Derek Jenkins.

This honor band was a special occasion as it was the 40th anniversary of the event. To mark the special occasion, UT Martin commissioned four new pieces to premier by each band during the event. Students were also afforded the incredible opportunity to meet and speak with the composer of each of the new pieces. On Saturday, each band performed a concert and debuted these new works.

The live stream is available on the Facebook page, “LCHS Falcon Band”, or at “UTM Music”

“I am a very proud director,” said Johnathan Johnson, LCHS director of bands. “They worked very hard and definitely made a huge impression and represented Lincoln County incredibly well. A special thanks to the LCHS Band Boosters, Lincoln County Department of Education, Mrs. Renee Pryor and Dr. Bill Heath for helping these students get to this great event.”

That same weekend, local students participated in the annual Tri-Lakes Band Directors Association Clinic Honor Band held at Harris Middle School in Shelbyville. Students participating were Thomas Womack, junior trombone; James Winland, senior trombone;

Cameron Niemi, junior trombone; April Rigsby, junior trumpet; Isabella Henson, senior percussion; Daniel Pogue, sophomore trumpet; and Baleigh Young, junior flute.

“This event was hosted by Harris Middle director Greg Napper and brought in great clinicians, such as Jeff Beckman and Billy Bateman,” Johnson explained. “Students rehearsed on Friday night and Saturday morning and gave a fantastic performance Saturday evening.”

The next Tri-Lakes event will be held on March 1-2 at Lincoln County High School. Some 15 Bands from the southern Middle Tennessee region will perform for an adjudicator and will workshop with a clinician and receive a rating. These concerts are free and open to the public. A schedule and more info will be available soon.

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