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Hudson students perform at WSMA honors concert

A group of Hudson Middle School students was selected to perform at the Wisconsin School Music Association (WSMA) Middle Level State Honors Music Project concert in Madison. The Hudson students are, front from left, Kia Feia and Abby Duerst; second row, Laura Martin, Clara Malanaphy and Middel School music teacher and honors choir coach Carol Dahle; back, Eli Baumgarter, Jared Anderson and Nathan McPhetres.

Seven students from Hudson Middle School were among a group of Wisconsin's most talented middle school music students (band, choir and orchestra) who performed at the Wisconsin School Music Association (WSMA) Middle Level State Honors Music Project concert. A crowd of more than 1,800 people attended the event in Madison on Oct. 30.

Selected to perform from Hudson Middle School were members of the Middle Level Honors Ensembles, grades 7-9: Kia Feia (alto, grade 8), Abby Duerst (alto, grade 9), Eli Baumgartner (French horn, grade 9), Jared Anderson (string bass, grade 9), Nathan McPhetres (string bass, grade 9), Clara Malanaphy (string bass, grade 8) and Laura Martin (trombone, grade 9).

Across the state, over 350 students were selected in June from more than 1,400 who auditioned to participate in the WSMA honors project. Auditions included individual student performances and an ensemble class taught by an Honors adjudicator.

The WSMA State Honors Music Project brings musicians together to work with nationally-known conductors in a professional setting. The 2010 WSMA Middle Level State Honors conductors were Dr. Rollo Dilworth, Dr. James Kjelland and Dr. Scott Wright.

Dilworth is an associate professor of music and director of choral activities and music education at Boyer College of Music and Dance -- Temple University. Kjelland is associate professor of music education at Northwestern University where he teaches instrumental music education and string pedagogy. Wright currently holds the position of associate professor of clarinet at the University of Kentucky.

"Middle Level Honors students continue to display advanced musical talents," said Jeff Gretzinger, WSMA program director. "Parents and teachers are amazed when they hear the quality of the State Honors ensembles. What is even more amazing is what happens when the Honors students bring their newly acquired skills and understanding back home to their peers in their school music programs."

This year marks the 16th anniversary of the Middle Level State Honors Music Project. Students in grades six through eight who attend a WSMA-member school and participate in the school's music program will be eligible to audition for the 2011 WSMA Middle Level Honors Project. Applications are available at Auditions will be held in April at seven locations throughout Wisconsin.