7th grade clarinetist, Sophie Vanderheiden (left) and 8th grade trombonist, Nolan Kehrli (right) photo credit: Finn Hill Middle School

7th grade clarinetist, Sophie Vanderheiden (left) and 8th grade trombonist, Nolan Kehrli (right) photo credit: Finn Hill Middle School

Finn Hill Middle School band students make Junior All-State Band

FHMS band teacher says students are largely “self-motivated,” to win the honor.

Two Finn Hill Middle School band students, 8th grade trombonist, Nolan Kehrli, and 7th grade clarinetist, Sophie Vanderheiden, have been selected to represent Finn Hill in the 2021 Junior All-State Band.

Nolan and Sophie auditioned along with hundreds of 7th and 8th graders from across the state. The audition involved submitting videos of themselves playing four exercises that demonstrated their technical skill, versatility, and overall musicianship.

The auditions are judged by a team of specialists on each instrument and the top players are selected.

Finn Hill Middle School Ron Maier, said while he is proud of his students, he cannot not take credit for the work they put in to refining their craft and earning this honor.

Maier said the students that achieve this honor are typically self-motivated and perseverant. He said even the auditioning process can be “stressful,” for students.

Traditionally, being in the Junior All-State Band means performing at the Washington Music Educators Association Conference in February. However, this year’s event will not include a live conference or band performance.

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