Fourteen Ladue students selected for All-Suburban Band
Fourteen students from Ladue High School have been selected to perform in an upcoming concert Jan. 6 as a part of the the St. Louis Suburban Music Educators Association Honors Band (SLSMEA), also known as the All-Suburban Band.
Ladue Horton Watkins High will host the concert Jan. 6 at 2 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center.
Members of the Ladue High School Band participated in a blind audition process for the annual All Suburban Band Nov. 5 at Ladue High. Around 800 students try out for the honors band annually. If selected to play in the All-Suburban Band, students are eligible to audition for the All-State Band on Dec. 1 in Columbia, MO. Each year top players from area high schools audition. Historically, Ladue students fill 10 to 20 spots on the band’s roster.
Prior to the Jan. 6 concert, all the different schools come together for three or four rehearsals to practice for the performance.
“I love seeing some of our best, dedicated students getting a chance to rehearse and perform with other dedicated students from our area,” music teacher and and conductor Aaron Lehde said.
At the upcoming concert, the band will perform pieces from band literature to Percy Grainger pieces. Each year the music ranges on what the conductor wants to do.
“We usually have special band conductors conducting us,” senior Julia Tsuchiya-Mayhew, who has played the trumpet in the All Suburban Band for four years, said.
The All-Suburban Band consists of all the member schools of Cooperating School District (CSD). Students who play in CSD’s member school district’s music programs are eligible to audition. Eleven districts throughout the state of Missouri are invited to audition.
“You can audition in any year of high school,” sophomore Hannah Jax said. “This is my first year and I am a sophomore.”
Junior Luke Song also plays in the All-Suburban Band. Although he played band in middle school, Song is participating in his first year in the All-Suburban Band.
“The All-Suburban Band in high school was much harder so I didn’t try out,” Song said. “This year I would feel like a loser if I didn’t try out.”
Throughout the year, SLSMEA also sponsors numerous festivals, including Large Ensemble Music Festival for Bands, Orchestra, and Choirs; Solo and Ensemble Music Festival for Band, Orchestra, and Choir; and Honor Group Ensembles for Bands, Orchestras, and Choirs for high school, middle school, and elementary students, according to the SLSMEA website.
“The band has an enlightening experience to see a huge spectrum of people who play the same instrument as you,” Song said. #