MCS Band earns silver rating at festival

By Brian Sweeney
The Margaretville Central School Junior/Senior Band earned a Silver Rating at New York State School Music Association Major Organization Festival (NYSSMA) on May 16.

The Silver Rating from the judges indicates that the students “have demonstrated an excellent level of technical and artistic skill in each of the evaluated categories.”
MCS Band Teacher Cassandra Olin said that she and the ensemble members were proud of their achievement.

“The students and I were very excited by the results. The students had to work extremely hard to achieve that rating,” Ms. Olin stated. “The judges also commended the band for their overall ensemble sound and professionalism.”

Ms. Olin noted that this marked the first time a band from MCS has attended such a festival. During the competition, students played three contrasting pieces for two judges who graded the ensemble on many musical elements. Two of the three pieces must be selected from the NYSSMA manual, which has lists of pieces that have been selected as exemplary works, at various levels, based on difficulty. The third piece must be a march.

The MCS band instructor said that the festival organizer also made a point about the Margaretville ensemble’s special ability to rise above the effects of the devastating flood that hit their communities last year and to still provide an outstanding performance.