High School Musicians Represent KIS At National Honor Festival

Pangyo middle and high school music educators Nate Bisco and Jack Brown share their students’ recent participation at the National Honor Festival.

Friday and Saturday, February 23-24, a group of KIS student musicians were honored to play or sing in the National Honor Choir, Band, and Orchestra, held at Chadwick International School in Incheon.

Students enrolled in international schools from around the country auditioned in November and were selected as members of the Honor Band, Orchestra, or Choir.  The students prepare difficult music and receive the opportunity to work with highly esteemed conductors from around the world.  This year, KIS was the most represented school at the festival, with 58 students being selected to perform in the three ensembles.

The strings group was directed by Dr. Jonathan Mann, who directs at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London and who is also Music Director of the Cardiff Sinfonietta. The choir was directed by Dr. Ethan Sperry, a Harvard and USC-educated choir director who teaches at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, USA. Directing the band was Dr. Robert Taylor, Director of Bands at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC, Canada.

Students performed a variety of high-level music literature from both the traditional western European historical canon and from cultures around the world, including India, Africa, the Caribbean, and various European and American folk traditions.

National Honor Festival is an annual event organized by the Korea International Music Educators Association (KIMEA) and Korean-American Interscholastic Activities Conference (KAIAC).  Many KIS students were placed at the top of their section based on their audition results, with several Phoenix students performing solos at the concert.

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