Music festival unites local bands

Last Friday and Saturday, February 19-20, the Illinois State University for the Performing Arts hosted the annual Twin City Honor Band festival where bands from Bloomington-Normal and the surrounding area came together to form a prestigious ensemble.

Each night, local high school bands would perform before the Honor Band. On Friday night, the Normal West Symphonic Winds performed, along with University High School and Central Catholic High School.

The Honor Band performed two songs, three movements each. The first piece, was conducted by Dr. Gavin Smith, the assistant director of bands at ISU. Their second piece was conducted by Dr. Martin H. Seggelke, the director of bands at ISU.

“I think that all of the bands did very well at the performance, both nights. Listening to the Twin City Honor Band play is wonderful, because they take the best players from every band to make a brilliant ensemble,” said Lisa Preston, director of bands here at Normal West.

“And our Symphonic Winds also did a great job, the pieces they played weren’t easy, but they handled themselves very well.” she continued.

Kamal Monla, a senior at Normal West High School, and a participant of this year’s Twin City Honor Band said, “Being a part of this ensemble is something that I will take with me for a long time.”

“It’s nice working with people from other bands, getting a feel for how others work,” he continued.

“And just being able to work with the staff at ISU is an amazing experience. The insight that they provide into the way we make music, and the skills that they teach me is something that I will remember as continue with my music career.”

Kamal will continue with music next year at ISU by participating in their marching band, and possibly pursuing a minor in music.