The Wilmington Area High School Concert Band, under the direction of Mr. Jonathan Nickel, recently performed at the annual PMEA (Pennsylvania Music Educators Association) Adjudicated Concert Assessment Festival. The event was held on Wednesday, March 8, 2017 at Westminster College and was hosted by Dr. R. Tad Greig, director of instrumental activities for the college’s music department.
Wilmington’s band, along with approximately seven other area high school and middle school ensembles performed for three judges. This year the judging panel included, Dr. R. Tad Greig, Mr. Andy Erb, director of bands at Thiel College, and Mr. Bob Matchett, director of bands at Seneca Valley High School.
Typically, each ensemble prepares two or three pieces of instrumental music chosen from a list of select peer reviewed literature. Each band’s performance of these pieces at the festival is then reviewed, rated, and given both written and recorded comments by each judge thus resulting in a final adjudicated rating for the performance. The rating classifications range from: Poor, Fair, Good, Excellent, & Superior.
The Wilmington Area High School Concert Band performed three selections consisting of the following; “Nobles of the Mystic Shrine” by John Philip Sousa, “Piedmont Festival Overture” by Robert Sheldon, and “Heatherwood Portrait” by composer James Barnes. Following their performance the band received the top rating of “Superior” from all three judges this year. Receiving three “Superior” ratings from the judging panel is considered the highest achievement for any ensemble at the festival.