Every year there is a group of band students that assemble to participate in County Band, a music festival that encompasses the talent of students from a variety of schools in Franklin County. These students gather at a different school in the county each year to perform a variety of songs together. This year, this music festival was held at Central Fulton in McConnellsburg, PA.
The former band director of Southern Fulton is directing the challenging and fun pieces of music for County Band this year, and the students have a variety of musicality levels they will be performing in multiple pieces.
“They have some tough pieces. They have ‘Three Ayers’ and they have ‘Military Selection,’” Mrs. Sheryl Deike (Faculty) said. “That is a tough piece, but not as tough as it is fast. There are some tough pieces, but then they have some mellow ones. They have ‘Hymnsong that we played last year in our concert band and the kids really liked that one.”’
Only a few select kids from James Buchanan get to go to County Band, but these kids earn the privilege to be part of this festival.
“15 students are going. The major determining factor for those participating in County Band are those who put forth the effort to audition and go out for District Band,” said Deike.
The band directors from the different schools feel honored and privileged to have talented kids that have the opportunity to go to a festival like this.
“I feel very proud. I am always excited to show off my kids,” said Deike.
The students are very excited to participate in this festival, and the band directors, as well as the students, look forward to this time of year when they get to play with a new group of students they don’t get to play with on a daily basis.
“I really enjoy these festivals. It is fun to kind of get away and take the kids away and enjoy the time together,” said Deike. “Hearing the kids come together and the sound. When you put your best in and all of them come together and just knowing we are all a community.”
Deike loves hearing the music that comes together after hard work to participate in a festival like County Band, so she works with these kids daily to make them the best musicians they can be and enjoys the time she spends with her kids every day.
“The kids and making music with the kids are my favorite part of being the Band Director at James Buchanan High School,” says Dieke.