KMEA, Kansas Music Educators Association, was a big musical event where kids from across Kansas showed their musical skills. Bob Lee, band and choir director, showed up with Skyline’s biggest talents.
On December 3, 236 choir and 116 band students auditioned for a spot in the main performance that was held in Dodge City. It was held for both middle school and high school levels.
Skyline’s district was the Southwest district, which was located from the east side of Pratt County to the Colorado border and from the Oklahoma border to around the Great Bend area.
Although most band kids competing got their music in the mid-summer, most of their practice time was done in October where they could receive help from their instructors and other outside resources. However, choir kids tended to only work on their pieces for six to seven weeks.
“I am super proud of these kids for all their hard work and the fact that they can compete with bigger schools like Dodge City, Great Bend and Liberal,” Lee said. “It’s a testimony for their hard work.”
Skyline had five kids go to the event, one for band and four for choir. The kids were freshman Brenna Dolezal, sophomore Adison Hampton, juniors Carson Lee and Jade Downs and senior Trent Adams. This was Down’s third time attending at the high school level.
“I like to sing, always have and always will,” Downs said. “I like being with that big of a choir and the music director was amazing.”
He described the environment of the event as a back and forth friendly environment that could be stressful at times. Hampton was the only band participant.
“KMEA was amazing, really fun, and the atmosphere was fantastic, so we all got along very well,” Hampton said.
The songs sang at the event included five vocal pieces. “Vision,” a song about what we love about life, “Fare the Well,” a piece about letting go of loved ones who have passed, and “A Gaelic Blessing,” which was originally written for the director at Shawnee Mission East. Two other songs included “Noel” and “Shout Glory.”
The best of the best from the district event will perform in Wichita in February. The results are still unknown, but Lee said everyone did a great job and they have a chance to go to Wichita where they will be competing with kids from all of Kansas.
~ Michal Cimerman and Michelle Ramirez assisted with the writing of this story.