Students take a long trip to the ASBDA Honor Band


Renee Hostetler

Honor Band participants from left to right: Ken Shafer, Hannah Geyer, Sydney Szabo, Megan Robinson, Andrew Geyer, Sam Rhoads.

Sydney Szabo

A group of six Madison-Plains Concert Band students and their director went on a road trip to Wooster High School this past weekend. They attended the annual ASBDA Honor Band, where they got to play pieces with students from a variety of different schools. 


The students who attended were Andrew Geyer, Hannah Geyer, Sam Rhoads, Ken Shafer, Sydney Szabo and Megan Robinson. They left for the honor band early afternoon on Friday, Feb. 21. Their band director, Renee Perkins-Hostetler, drove them to Wooster using a school van. The group stayed in Wooster overnight since it’s so far from home. 


The honor band consisted of around 20 schools with the high school band having around 85       students. Their conductor for the event was Nancy Ditmer, who retired from teaching music at the College of Wooster. The students played a total of four pieces on Saturday for a concert. Those pieces were “Choreography” by Robert Sheldon, “ Americans We” by Henry Fillmore, “Nurture” by Edward Fairlie and “Journey through Orion”  by Julie Giroux. They also had the opportunity to work with great directors that are part of the program during their sectionals, where they split into groups by instrument. 


All the students received a t-shirt that they wore for the concert Saturday afternoon. After the performance, the students were free to leave with their family or with their school.


Megan Robinson, who plays alto saxophone, attended this event for the first time. She was asked what she would want people to know about honor bands. Robinson commented, “It is challenging and worth it. It’s a great experience.” 


ASBDA is the American School Band Directors Association. The program recognizes excellence in teaching all across the nation and also provides educational research for the music classroom. Director Renee Hostetler is a member of this program for the second year in a row.