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GSL musical groups do well at large group contest March 16

On Wednesday, March 16, four music ensembles from Glencoe-Silver Lake (GSL) High School participated in the State-Section Large Group Contest at GFW High School. These ensembles are under the direction of Peter Gepson, band, and Kay Wilson, choir.
Performing first for the GSL choirs was the SA Singers Choir, (Soprano/Alto Choir). It performed “Bonny Portmore” and a Category I piece entitled “Oh, Dear! What can the Matter Be?” The SA Singers received a superior rating. They sang with excellent diction, good musicianship, and were commended for being a balanced, blended ensemble. Comments from the judges included: “Lovely sound, warm, nice spin, good-looking choir, lovely solos, nice-looking choir!”
The GSL Concert Choir performed at 10:30 a.m. to a packed church. It performed two Category I pieces (this is the most difficult level music), “All That Hath Life and Breath, Praise Ye the Lord” and “Lamentations of Jeremiah.” Rachel Bonderman was featured as the soloist on the first piece; she also was selected to do this solo when the Wright County Conference Honor Choir performed “All That Hath Life and Breath” at its concert back in January. Leah Bettcher accompanied the choir on the second piece. The choir received an excellent rating. It sang two extremely difficult, intense songs, and performed with class and grace. The choir worked extremely hard and it showed. Its attention to detail did not go unnoticed. The crowd loved them. Comments from the judges included: “Nice-looking choir, great music, lovely solo, great piano accompaniment, beautiful blend on some very difficult music.”
The Symphonic Band performed “Zia, Zia! (March)” by Claude T. Smith and “The Bonsai Tree” by Julie Giroux. The panel of three judges awarded scores of 35, 34, and 31 and the band was presented an overall rating of “excellent.” Judges’ comments included: “Good ensemble sound. Very good control of ranges and excellent mallet work.”
The Concert Band performed “Flieger-Marsch” by Herman Dostal and “Symphonic Suite” by Clifton Williams. It was rewarded for its performance with scores of 38, 38, and 36 from the three judges for a unanimous superior rating. Their comments included, “great-looking and sounding group — great job today! Good attention to all details — with a good, controlled sound! and Great to hear the double reeds — oboe solo — yes!” (Oboe soloist was Morgan Stoeckman).
The next performances of the GSL High School Music Department are the April 2 solo/ensemble contest at Minnesota State University-Mankato, the April 7 Jazz Concert/FFA Pork Chop Dinner and the April 17 Jazz I performance at Famous Dave’s in Minneapolis.