NWKMEA performs at Beach/Schmidt


Matthew Rome

Hays students who qualified for KMEA district band pose for photo at the concert.

Students that qualified for North West Kansas Music Education Association, NWKMEA, performed at the Beach/Schmidt Performing Arts Center on Dec. 2.

Those chosen met at Fort Hays with fellow members to form a choir, band and orchestra for rehearsal at 8 a.m. until noon. The groups had short breaks before students got a chance to get lunch. After lunch they rehearsed for a few more hours before the concert.

The concert started at 3:30 p.m. with performances by band, choir and orchestra.

“The rehearsal before the concert is very long, but I do enjoy it,” sophomore Sierra Adkins said. “I like to make friends with those around me, because you almost never know who the people are.”

Auditions were in late October and early November, and students found out their results a few days later.

Some students sometimes start practicing for their auditions as early as the summer before. Others might wait until the school year starts before starting to rehearse.

“The advantage for our kids is that they get to play with the best players Northwest Kansas has to offer,” band instructor Matthew Rome said. “This only feeds back into our own band when students have a good experience.  I’m very proud of all the students who agreed to take on the extra time and work to be a part of this event.”

Those chosen from Hays High joined students selected from schools all around Northwest Kansas to make up the various groups.

“It’s pretty cool to perform with people you don’t know,” senior Brittany Espinosa said. “You get to hear different voices than you usually hear, and you can become friends with these other people.”