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All State Band

By: Alishia S.
South Dakota, Age 15

The 52nd annual All State Band was in Huron, South Dakota on March 21-23, 2002. My school had five participating this year and we had a blast. When we arrived in Huron on the evening of Thursday, March 21, we were greeted by the sight of the exquisite hotel that we would call home for the weekend. After eating a hearty meal, we headed to our first rehearsal with guest conductor, Anthony Maiello. He ended up being a tall, Italian man that, I thought, would be a lot of fun. Well, I was right. He taught us many new things about music and made us laugh. Anthony was also a man who was very respected. When he said stop playing as soon as he stopped conducting, you did just that.
Most of the sounds heard during this weekend were of music coming from the 160-piece band. The pieces that were chosen for us to play ranged from extremely technical, ˘12 Seconds To The Moon÷ by Robert W. Smith and ˘Wedding Dance÷ by Frederick Fennell, to very beautiful and melodious, ˘Shenandoah÷ by Frank Ticheli. Other songs that were played throughout the weekend included ˘Celebration Fanfare÷ by Steven Reineke, ˘Pacific Commemoration÷ by Mark Camphouse, and ˘Barnum and BaileyĂs Favorite÷ by Karl L. King, arr. Glenn Cliff Bainum.
It felt so incredibly good to be in the Huron Civic Arena playing with other very talented musicians. The only bad things about it were the rock hard chairs that we had to sit on for hours at a time. I was really excited for my parents to be there on Saturday night to hear the music we had prepared. We were also excited to get all dressed up in our formal attire and go out for a fancy meal.
Finally, Saturday night arrived and we all got ourselves prettied up for the Grand Concert. We walked across the street to the arena and met our family and friends for the blinding pictures that everybody takes before the concert. Eventually the concert started, awards were given, and it was finished. Anthony stood up in front of the mic to say his last thank-yous and had this brilliant idea. He decided weĂd play ˘Barnum and BaileyĂs Favorite÷, which was our last song, twice as fast. He called this the Italian circus tempo! Everyone panicked because the song is already very fast. It ended up being a lot of fun!