On Saturday, January 26th, the James Hart Symphonic Orchestra will perform at the 2013 Illinois Music Education Conference (IMEC) in Peoria, Illinois.
About 10,000 music educators and performers attend this annual conference that is billed as "bringing together the best in music in Illinois." The conference features dozens of performances and clinics by Illinois school music ensembles. Among the groups performing this year are the DePaul University Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago State Vocal Jazz Ensemble, and the Wheaton College Symphonic Band.
"It's very unusual for a junior high ensemble to be chosen to perform at this conference, so we are incredibly proud of this group," said James Hart Principal Michael Klein.
To be considered for the honor of performing, the school's orchestra had to complete a rigorous application process last school year that included the submission of an audition CD.
To send the orchestra off to Peoria in style, the school held a pep rally, of sorts, on Tuesday featuring performances by the James Hart Choir and the orchestra, performing some of the pieces they will play at the conference.
"We hope this once-in-a-lifetime experience of performing in a statewide spotlight will encourage and motivate our students to continue their musical education as they transition to high school and beyond," said Orchestra Director Sara White. "I'm so proud of the way it has motivated the kids to attempt more challenging pieces of music and to work harder in rehearsals."