Montevallo High School helped host activities related to the University of Montevallo Honor Band Festival, March 6-8, 2015. The University of Montevallo Music Department hosts this event annually, which brings approximately 400 students in grades 7-12 from across the state for a weekend of rehearsals and concerts in large ensemble settings.
The large nature of the honor band festival offers Montevallo High School an opportunity to assist. MHS band director Perry Lawley works closely with UM’s director of bands Dr. Joe Ardovino to host the auditions for approximately 225 high school students at MHS on the first afternoon of the festival. Then, Lawley uses the MHS band room and related areas to host and guest conduct one of the ensembles for the festival, called the Purple Honor Band. The Purple Honor Band rehearses on Saturday and Sunday at MHS before making the move to Palmer Auditorium for the Sunday afternoon concert.
“This collaboration is just one example of how the Montevallo schools and the University community are working together to help broaden the experiences for our students, and from students all around the state,” Lawley said.
Sixteen of Lawley’s students participated in this year’s festival, five from Montevallo Middle and 11 from Montevallo High. Three of the 11 from MHS earned first chair placements in the Festival Wind Ensemble, which is the highest ranking. In addition, MHS senior trumpet player Dylan Sanders earned a $1,000 Honor Band scholarship to the University of Montevallo.
“I am certainly proud of Dylan, and proud of all my students for taking part in the festival,” Lawley said. “However, I think I’m most proud of the community of Montevallo – for its spirit of cooperation in education and for offering opportunities to these students to help enrich their lives.”