What do a trumpet, trombone, and a bassoon all have in common? All three instruments, along with their players, got to make music during a special event. On December 7, Juniors Alexis Taylor, Alexa Dostal and Senior Jayde Vogeler played in the Northeast Iowa Bandmasters Association (NEIBA) Honor Band at Oelwein High School. NEIBA is a step below the All-state band. All-state is the highest musical award for any high school band player.
"Jayde, Alexis, and Alexa are now considered to be some of the highest level musicians in our district with their selection to NEIBA," says Channing Halstead, 5-12 band teacher. " In order to achieve this honor, they have put in extra time at honor bands, private lessons, and at home," Halstead explains. "We have many musicians here at North Tama that are capable of these talents in in their future."
NEIBA consisted of two bands: the Sousa band and the King Band. Taylor, Dostal, and Vogeler all participated in the Sousa Band. There, the ladies played four songs: Vox Populi, Inaugural Dances, Song for My Children, and The King Across the Water. The Sousa band had the honors of having director Dr. Andrew Boysen from the University of New Hampshire as their conductor. Dr. Boysen is originally from Cedar Rapids and had a fun time coming back to Iowa to direct the 124 musicians in the Sousa Band.
Pictured from left to right: Alexa Dostal, bassoonist, Alexis Taylor, trumpeter, and Jayde Vogeler, trombonist.
"I did enjoy the director because he was fun, taught me a lot, and I enjoyed getting to know him through talking and his music," said Taylor.
This year was NEIBA's 50th anniversary. To make this event special, the council of NEIBA asked each conductor to write his own song for the event. Dr. Boysen wrote the song Song for my Children. At the event, Boysen said that when he was asked to do this, he thought that NEIBA wanted a fast and fun piece. Instead, Boysen wrote the composition that was a ballad because he was inspired to write this song from a piece of music called Song for Lyndsay, who is his wife. People were moved by the song and were wiping away the tears.
Through the long day of practice and the performance, Taylor says it will be a day she will never forget.
"NEIBA is a very long day, but definitely worth it after making so many new friends, learning many new things, and playing music that brings people to tears," said Taylor.
"It is a good experience for someone in band," adds Dostal. "If you want to be a good musician, you should try and do NEIBA."