Congratulations to five King students who auditioned on November 16 and were accepted to perform in the Western Regional Music Festival: (L to R) John Russell '22 (oboe), Bryce Heaton '23 (trumpet), Eliza Heaton '20 (choir), Eli Busch '21 (choir), and Jacquelyn Banford '20 (choir). These students will also have the opportunity to audition for the All-State Music Festival.
The Western Regional Music Festival takes place January 17-18, 2020 at Darien High School. The festival is the brainchild of the Connecticut Music Educators Association (CMEA). The CMEA's mission is to "provide programs and activities for professional educators, students and future music educators striving to enhance the quality of music education for all children" and the CMEA launched its first All-Connecticut Festival in 1936.
King's Performing Arts Program helps students discover and pursue their unique paths to excellence. Dr. Jackie Martino, Chair of Performing Arts Department, praised the students, saying: "Both Mr. Mendez (Performing Arts Faculty) and I are so proud of all of the students who auditioned this year. It takes great courage to perform a challenging solo and sight-read music in front of judges. Congratulations to the students who were accepted into the Western Regional Festival; it is a wonderful opportunity for our students!"
The King students are so excited by the opportunity to join this year's Festival and are all passionate about engaging in music, commenting:
"I am excited to perform at the Western Regional Music Festival again this year, as it is a truly special event that brings dedicated and talented musicians from schools across our region together through our collective love of music. I am looking forward to this because of my passion for classical music, which I intend to pursue in college alongside a business degree. Westerns is a great opportunity for me to showcase my talents in singing as I have been training in opera and musical theatre for the past three years. This is the regional championships of singing so please come support Eli, Bryce, Eliza, John and myself at our performance on January 17-18, 2020 at Darien High School." - Jacquelyn Banford
"From jamming out to Broadway songs with my friends to studying and perfecting classical arias, I have always had a passion for singing and music. Here at King, I have the opportunity to work in a choir, perform in musicals as well as audition for larger state choirs such as "Western Regionals." Outside of King, I study music history as well as vocal techniques. I hope in the future to have the opportunity at King to participate in an accelerated singing group or Madrigal group. I was the only male choir student who was accepted for the Regional Music Festival this year and I'm really proud of that." - Eli Busch
"I have been playing trumpet for about 6 years now and I have enjoyed every year playing it. I have a lot of fun in the King band with Mr. Mendez and playing along with other students in the school. I pursue this instrument at King by playing in the band. I then pursue playing the trumpet outside of school by participating in activities such as the ones offered by CMEA." - Bryce Heaton
"I have always have a great love for singing that I aim to keep with me forever. Because of the incredible opportunities that King has given me to take part in musical productions, choir, jazz band, and more, my passion has grown immensely. With all the amazing support from the King performing arts faculty, I was able to enter my CMEA audition with confidence and excitement -- and I am beyond excited to take part in the festival again this January!" - Eliza Heaton
"I study with a private teacher and participate in Norwalk Youth Symphony in addition to my involvement in the King Music Program. Last year's Western-Regional and All-State festivals were milestones in my musical career, and I'm looking forward to seeing my friends from past events at Regionals this year. I hope that the numbers of King students who audition for and participate in these festivals will continue to grow." - John Russell