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NLHS bands outperform competition

March was the month designated as “Music In Our Schools Month” by the Music Educators National Conference, the national organization for school music teachers.
The North Lincoln High School performing arts department was very active during the month of March and reaped many accolades, honors and recognitions for students’ hard work and dedication.
The production of “Beauty and the Beast” began the month with standing ovations and rave reviews the four days the musical was presented in the NLHS auditorium. Directed by Joanna Underwood, the musical in classic Disney style was a great success for the drama, choral and band students and faculty.
Mid-March is always “festival time” for school music organizations. State festivals are located in six district locations throughout N.C. for high school bands, middle school bands and choruses to compete for ratings of superior, excellent, average, fair or poor. Of course, every group strives for the “I” or the state “superior” rating.
On March 16th, the NLHS Concert Choir, conducted by Joanna Underwood, attended State Festival at Wingate University. It was awarded straight “superiors” for their stage performance.
Also on the same day, the NLHS Symphonic Band, conducted by Neil Underwood, attended its state festival at Shelby High School and was awarded straight “superiors” on stage with an “excellent” rating in sight-reading. This resulted in an overall rating of “superior.” Both the Concert Choir and Symphonic Band were in Grade III/IV level music.
The next day, March 17, the NLHS Wind Ensemble, conducted by Neil Underwood, attended State Festival at Shelby High School in Grade VI literature (the highest grade a band can enter). The ensemble received straight “superiors” on stage and a “superior” in sight-reading. Not only did the group earn all “superiors,” it was also given all “A and A+” marks on every judge’s sheet. It was accorded the only standing ovation the entire four days of festival.
Topping off, the NLHS “Band of Knights” Winterguard, under the leadership of instructor Lisa Biggs, placed fourth in the Carolina Indoor Performance Association’s championships. Its fourth place finish was out of 19 units in their division, with teams hailing from North and South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.
NLHS students, parents, and staff are very proud of their “Music In Our Schools Month” accomplishments.
Their hard work didn’t end there, however. From April 28 through May 1, the “Band of Knights” traveled to Washington, D.C. as North Carolina’s representative and performed in the 60th anniversary celebration of the ending of WWII. Though weather did not permit the originally scheduled performance at the National WWII Memorial, the “Band of Knights” did perform to a standing room only crowd at the old post office pavilion in downtown Washington. Their performance was met with applause, tears and cheers. This performance was recognized with acknowledgment letters from Gov. Mike Easley and Congressman Patrick McHenry, congratulating the North Lincoln band for their outstanding accomplishments.
Upcoming concerts for the NLHS “Band of Knights” include performances for the PTA on May 10; the annual Spring Honors concert (along with the NLHS Concert Choir) on May 17; and a performance for Senior Awards Night on May 26.
On Saturday, the “Band of Knights” will serve as the host for the South Central District Band Association’s Solo and Ensemble Festival at North Lincoln High School.
For further information about performances of the “Band of Knights” call NLHS at (704) 736-1969.
by Special to the LTN

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