Kings County Arts in Action
March 2021 Edition
Brought To You By Kings County Office of Education
Arts Education Throughout Kings County
Pioneer Middle School Celebrates Music in Our Schools
Earl F. Johnson Artwork: Like Father, Like Son
Hanford West 2021 Achievements
- In January, select students of the Hanford West High Choirs joined in song in an effort to inspire each and everyone of us to live together in harmony. Incorporated in "We Are the Voice" by Stan Spottswood is the well-known and beloved “My Country, 'Tis of Thee,” written by Samuel Francis Smith in 1831.
- In honor of National Random Acts of Kindness Day (Feb. 17th), the Hanford West Musical Theatre presented this song written in 1965 by Burt Bacharach and Hal David. They found inspiration by the meaningful lyrics and beautiful melody. The students hope it will inspire everyone to spread kindness and love "not just for some, but for everyone!"
- Three students from Hanford West High School Choir were selected to perform in the the California Choral Directors Association ALL STATE Honor Choir. This is an amazing opportunity for high school students from around the state of California to sing in select choirs under the direction of nationally and internationally known conductors. The All State Honor Choir is “the cream of the crop”, bringing together the finest high school singers from the entire state of California.
CA All State Women's Honor Choir
Clare Carlson, 12th grade
CA All State Men's Honor Choir
Dustin Mayberry, 11th grade
CA All State Mixed Honor Choir
Autumn Kinnard, 12th grade
Woodrow Wilson Student Earns All-State Band Honors
From Band Director Bill Wilkinson:
Woodrow Wilson Jr. High School 8th grader, Brandon Vasquez, was selected to the 2021 California Band Directors Association Junior High School All-State Honor Band. Brandon, who started playing alto saxophone as a 5th grader at Hanford’s MLK elementary school was one of only sixteen 7th and 8th grade alto saxophone students selected to the all-state band. Brandon made auditioning for all-state a goal last spring after then 8th grader Fernando Medina made the 2020 All-State Honor Band on trumpet. Subsequently, Fernando, now a freshman at Hanford West HS made this year’s high school All-State Honor Band - quite the accomplishment for a high school freshman! Band students auditioning for the All-State Honor Band will spend many months of hours upon hours of practice and training in preparation for what in the end, at least for the junior high audition, amounts to less than three minutes of a recorded audition that will determine if they are chosen for this honor.
It is not commonplace for students in our area of the California to make All-State. Though there were 250 students selected to this year’s junior high school honor band, Brandon was one of only five students selected from the San Joaquin Valley; the other four were from Clovis and Bakersfield respectively. The overwhelming majority of the students making this year’s junior high band reside in the major population areas of Southern California and the Bay Area. A common thread of most students that make all-state honor band is the private lessons. The ability to gain students access to qualified private instruction in our rural area of the state is a challenge due to travelling to the instructor if out of town as well as the financial obligation associated with the private coaching. Both Brandon and Fernando benefitted from private instructors here in Hanford who masterfully guided them in their preparation. Brandon was able to take saxophone lessons from Hanford West graduate and current touring member of the Glenn Miller Orchestra, Tanner Olivas and Fernando studied trumpet privately with Hanford native and HESD band director Jennifer Locher during his 8th grade year to prepare for his audition.
Typically, the All-State Honor Band would convene at the California All-State Music Educators Conference (CASMEC), held each February, where the all-state ensembles would rehearse over three-days and then perform a concert under the direction of a nationally recognized conductor. This year, due to covid, the ensembles rehearsed and recorded their concert music from home to produce a virtual concert that will be released later this spring. We are grateful for all CASMEC partner organizations to find a way to provide our students the opportunity to have an all-state experience!