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Brian Kay



Brass Stages Music Studio

I have discontinued updating the Student News section of this website, but please enjoy these "blasts from the past"!

2010-2011 Student News

Austin Hits The "Root Beer" Zone!

Austin Kay, son of his teacher, Brian Kay, has completed the first 4 pages of Accent on Achievement, Book I, earning the promised reward of one complete root beer. Austin learned his first five notes on trumpet, plus tonguing and mouth breathing, and mastered tunes like Dreydl, Dreydle, Donkey Round, Good King Wenceslaus, Jingle Bells, and Hot Cross Buns. Austin described his Root Beer as "The sweet taste of victory!" His father said, "I feel proud of Austin as my student, PLUS proud of him as my son. It is a very warm feeling in my heart. I am happy to be in a new era of my teaching where I can see the process through the eyes of a parent." Both Austin's brothers, Lucas, and Conrad are very proud of him too.

Carolyn TenEyck Makes Senior District

Framingham Sophomore (shown proudly wearing her FHS Band sweatshirt), Carolyn TenEyck has made Senior District. In the competetive auditions, she scored a 133 - well above the cutoff score of 127, earning the 2nd part, 3rd seat chair. She was just one point below making an All-State recommendation. That will give her something to shoot for next year! Carolyn also performs with the Youth Symphony at Rivers. Congratulations, Carolyn!


Sa-Sa Gutterman Completes All Ten School Levels!

Sa-Sa Gutterman, a 6th grade student at the Chenery Middle School in Belmont has completed all ten level tests, which are required in her school program to be finished by the end of 8th grade. When a student completes all these levels, the director, Mr. McClellan, prepares an advanced etude just for them (shown in picture). These etudes are posted on the band room wall with a write-up about the student. Mr. McClellan's write up about Sa-Sa says:

Packed into this pint-sized body is a powerhouse of a trombonist. Ms. Gutterman passed the original ten levels while still in sixth grade and far underneath the "required height" to play trombone. One of the finest examples of mind over matter, Ms. Gutterman's success on this instrument is due to a fine work ethic and her high degree of persistence. With all these traits in mind, this exercise will challenge her slide technique to the max and require her to use all the breath support she can muster as the phrases are long and arduous. The player is reminded to check for alternate positions.

Congratulations to Sa-Sa, and what a great tradition in the music program at Belmont!

Daniel Yang Finishes Book 2

Moving at a rapid pace, Sherborn 6th grader, Daniel Yang has completed the entire Accent on Achievement, Book 2 in only five months. Daniel has now started the Intermediate Trombone Method, Volume 1, and is officially an Intermediate level player. Congratulations, Daniel!


Four Make Junior District!

Ben Hartman Makes 1st Solo Chair!

In his first year of eligibility, Natick 7th grader, Ben Hartman earned the top "1st chair" euphonium seat in the Eastern Massachusetts Junior District Band. Three other top euphonium players from the district also made the band. Ben was also helped greatly in his preparations by his previous teacher, Mr. Gerry Ash. Congratulations, Ben!

Harrison Shockley Makes Junior District Band

Harrison Shockley, 8th grade trombonist from Wellesley Middle School has been selected, by competitive audition for the Eastern Massachusetts Junior District Band. 29 of the top trombonists from area schools auditioned, and only 15 were accepted, including Harrison! Way to go, Harrison!

Carolyn TenEyck Makes Junior District

Framingham 9th Grader Carolyn TenEyck has been selected for the Eastern Massachusetts Junior District Festival Band. She won the spot amongst the top trombonists from the region in an audition consisting of solo, scales, and sight reading. Congratulations, Carolyn!

Russell Petry Returns to Junior District

For the second straight year, Russell Petry has made the Massachusetts Eastern Junior District Band. Russell is a 9th Grader from Newton, where he is also active in Football and supplementary Math. Additionally, Rusell performs with a brass quartet at the New England Conservatory Preparatory Division. Keep up the great work, Russell!

Mark Bestavros Does It!

Just in time for the end of 2010, Wayland Trombonist, Mark Bestavros completed Accent on Achievement, Book II, and has moved on to the Intermediate Trombone Method. While completing the book, Mark also mastered numerous band for his school music program, where he performs with both concert and jazz bands.

Hweedo makes District and All-State Recommendation

Lexington High School Junior, Hweedo Chang made the 1st trombone section of the Eastern District Concert Band. His audition score was high enough to also earn him an All-State Recommendation. He will try out for All-State in January. Keep up the great work, Hweedo!

Daniel Yang Blasts Through To The Countdown!

Working at a blistering pace, 6th grade trombonist, Daniel Yang, of Dover has reached the countdown (last ten pages) of Accent on Achievement, Vol II. Daniel worked through the first part of the book, and reached the countdown in just ten lessons. WOW!

Devin Hits the Countdown!

Wayland Middle Schooler, Devin Comettant has reached the Countdown stage of Accent on Achievement, Book 1. That means just ten pages left to go. Keep up the great work, Devin!

Sa-Sa Rolls On!

After only one and one-half years playing trombone, Belmont 6th grader, Sa-Sa Gutterman completed the Intermediate Trombone Method, Volume 1 by Brian Kay, and now moves on to book two. Sa-Sa is the youngest ever in Mr. Kay's studio to complete this book. Keep up the great work, Sa-Sa!!


2009-2010 Student News

Danny Foner Makes It Happen!

Natick 8th Grader, Danny Foner has completed the challenging "Intermediate Trombone Method, Volume 1" by Brian Kay. Danny now moves up to the Volume II - Advanced Intermediate level. Keep up the great work, Danny!

Schafer Will Return To The Eastern Jr. District Band

He has done it again! Dover 9th grader, Ben Schafer has earned a spot by competitive audition in the Massachusetts Eastern Jr. District Band. This year, the competition was tougher than ever, but once again, Ben has made the grade!

Petry to Debut with Eastern Jr. District Band

Newton 8th grader, Russell Petry has made the Massachusetts Eastern Jr. District Band. This will be Russell's first year with the Band. Congratulations, Russell!

Evan Wood To Lead The Eastern Jr. District Band Trombone Section

Dover 8th grader, Evan Wood will return to the Eastern Jr. District Festival, this time as first trombone in the Band. Last year, Evan also earned a top spot in the festival, performing with the orchestra. Way to go, Evan!

Sa-Sa Reaches the Intermediate Level

On the one year anniversary of her beginning trombone, Belmont 5th grader, Sa-Sa Gutterman completed the Accent on Achievement, Book II to officially reach the Intermediate Level, and begin work on the Intermediate Trombone Method by Brian Kay. Sa-Sa is the youngest ever in Mr. Kay's studio to reach this level. Don't stop, Sa-Sa!!

Martin Hits the Countdown

HE DID IT! Working through each item in the book, check by check, Martin, a middle school student from Wayland has reached the countdown stage (last ten pages) of Accent on Achievement Book One. To reach this milestone, Martin achieved complete accuracy - correct notes, correct rhythm with a steady beat - on each and every number leading up to the countdown. Congratulations Martin, and keep up the great work!



2008-2009 Student News

Laura Igoe Wins Walpole H.S. Gold Music Award

Laura Igoe was selected for the Walpole High School Gold Music Award. This special award is given to just one Junior in the music department. Congratulations, Laura!

Mark Springett Does It Again

After moving steadily and swiftly through Dover Eighth grader, Mark Springett, has completed Accent on Achievement, Book II. Mark acheived this feat in good time, moving steadily and swiftly through the book. Mark now continues on through the Intermediate Trombone Method as an official early Intermediate level player. Keep up the great work, Mark!

Scott Becker Cleans Up At Music Awards

Wayland trumpeter, Scott Becker received a slew of awards upon finishing his middle school musical career. Scott received a Jazz Leader certificate and Outstanding Band Member award. He also recieved a perfect Workshop Attendance Award, and was inducted into the Skill Lick Hall Of Fame. Way to go, Scott!

Sa-sa Rockets To A Great Start

Mr. Kay's newest and youngest student, Belmont 4th grader, Sa-sa Gutterman is off to a roaring start on trombone. She has previously played violin and oboe, but recently decided that the trombone is the instrument for her. In just her first two lessons, Sa-sa has already learned to play Hot Cross Buns in the key of Db, and she earned a whopping 8 stars and 4 checks on her first week in the book. Watch out for Sa-sa!


Ben Schafer Does It!

Out of 40 trombonists from the Massachusetts Eastern District who auditioned, Dover 8th grader, Ben Schafer was one of the top 14 who made the grade for the Eastern District Festival, where he will play in the Band. This will be Ben's first year at the festival. Besides playing trombone, Ben enjoys tennis. He also is creative as a chef, preparing poppy seed bread, brownies, and cinnamon sugar pancakes.


Nate Johnson Makes District

With 63 seventh through ninth grade trumpeters auditioning for just 18 spots, the competition was fierce. But in his first year trying out, Sudbury seventh grader, Nate Johnson earned a spot in the Eastern District Festival where he will play with the band. To make the grade, Nate mastered a challenging solo (Trumpeter's Lullabye) and numerous scales. He boosted his range, endurance, speed, and tone quality. When the bus to the audition was an hour late, Nate was worried that all that hard work would go to waste, but all worked out, and Nate will be going to Districts!


Evan Wood Makes Eastern District Orchestra

Having previously earned a spot in Junior Districts as a cellist, Dover 7th grader, Evan Wood decided to give it a go on trombone. In his first year auditioning on trombone, Evan didn't know what to expect by way of results. However, Evan's enthusiastic and thorough preparation paid off. As one of the top scorers in the district, he earned a spot in the orchestra. Evan comes from a very musical family. His twin brother plays viola and sax. Brother Ethan plays violin and piano. His mom plays violin, viola, and piano, and dad plays violin and is a former trumpeter. "They're all good" says Evan. Wow!


Mark Bestavros Makes Book Two

Wayland 7th grader Mark Bestavros, just back from a trip to Egypt, has passed Book I of the Accent on Achievement series and is moving up to book two. In passing Book One, Mark completed all the tunes in the book with correct notes, correct rhythm, steady beat, and no fumbles. Way to go, Mark!


Laura Igoe Makes District and Earns All-State Recommendation

Walpole 11th grader, Laura Igoe has made the Eastern District Ensemble, and scored high enough to also earn an All-State recommendation. Laura successfully performed Sonata I by Johann Ernst Galliard, as well as scales and sight reading. When not playing trombone, Laura is interested in Biology, and is in the French Club and the Green Team at school.


2007-2008 Student News

Mark Springett Catapults Into Book II

Dover Seventh grader, Mark Springett wasted no time in finishing Book One of Accent on Achievement, and is already moving through Book Two. Mark made solid progress each and every lesson to accomplish this feat. Mark also happens to be the Level Seven State Gymnastics Champion. Congratulations, Mark!

Russell Petry Becomes Youngest Ever To Finish Intermediate Method

Russell Petry, a Newton Sixth Grader, made history today by becoming the youngest ever to complete Brian Kay's Intermediate Trombone Method. He finished the book just in time for the end of the school year, and after a "tough" day at Canbobie Lake Park! Congratulations, Russell.

Andrew Ramsey Completes Book One!

Just in time for the end of the school year, Weston seventh grader, Andrew Ramsey has completed Book One of Accent on Achievement. He now moves on to Book Two. Andrew is also an avid baseball player, playing Weston Middle School's A Team.

New Trombonist, Monika Bernotas Hits Her Stride

Wayland Senior, Monika Bernotas has completed Book I of Accent on Achievement. After being a flute player for eight years, she decided to pick up the trombone to help the Wayland High School Wind Ensemble and Orchestra, which needed players. When not playing trombone, you can find Monika on stage doing theatre, or eating ice cream! She'll be attending the College of William and Mary next year.

Ben Schafer Hits The Countdown

Dover 7th grader, Ben Schafer has reached the countdown stage (last ten pages) of Accent on Achievement, Book 2. Ben plays in the concert band and jazz band at Dover-Sherborn Middle School. Besides trombone, Ben enjoys tennis and archery.

Russell Petry Makes The Cut

Newton 6th grader, Russell Petry has been chosen to perform with the Newton All-City Band's elite small group, the Brass Chamber Ensemble. The group will be featured at upcoming All-City Band concerts. When Russell isn't busy playing trombone, he enjoys basketball and ultimate frisbee. He also attends the Russian School of Math for advanced math work.

Foner Flies Into The Intermediate Zone

Natick Sixth grader, Danny Foner, has officially reached the Intermediate Level at the unusually early age of 6th grade. To reach this level, Danny completed the Accent on Achievement, Volume 2. The book ends with the March from the Nutcracker, with it's persistent dotted eighth-sixteenth rhythms, and challenging high note ending. This piece brought back memories for Danny, who is also interested in drama, of taking part in the Nutcracker production at Walnut Hill. In reaching this level, Danny overcame the additional challenge of having recently gotten braces. Way to go, Danny!

Andrew Ramsey Reaches Book I Countdown

After steadily advancing through the book, Weston 7th grader, Andrew Ramsey, has reached the Countdown (last ten pages) of Accent on Achievement, Book 1. Andrew had not realized that he was this close to completing the book. When we checked it on a lark in his last lesson, we were pleasantly surprised to find he was one tune away from being on the last ten pages. Andrew readily checked this off (Chopsticks), and we were able to celebrate his reaching this milestone. Congratulations, Andrew!

Scott Becker Hits the Book II Countdown

7th grade trumpeter, Scott Becker hit the Countdown (last 10 pages) of Accent on Achievement, Volume 2. Scott reached the countdown by checking off the tricky Colonel Bogey March. Along with trumpet Scott enjoys swimming and soccer, and his favorite food is cheeseburgers.

Tally Levitz Earns Top District Spot

Sophomore Euphonium player, Tally Levitz earned the top score in the Eastern District Festival auditions. She will perform as first chair euphonium with the band, and has also earned a recommendation to audition for All-State in January. Congratulations, Tally!

Matt Leftin Makes District in Classical Tuba and Jazz Trombone

Senior trombonist Matt Leftin, of Needham had lots to carry to his Eastern District auditions. He tried out on both classical tuba, and jazz trombone, and was rewarded with a spot in his choice of ensembles. He elected to participate in the Jazz Band. Matt also earned an All-State recommendation, so he'll be busy preparing for that audition, which occurs in January. Go Matt, go!

Matt Johnson Makes District

Sophomore trombonist, Matt Johnson, of Sudbury has earned a spot in the Eastern District Festival Bands. This will be Matt's first year performing with the band. When he is not playing trombone, Matt keeps busy with the High School swim team, the Boy Scouts, and he is currently restoring a Model A Ford.

Laura Igoe Finishes Intermediate Method in Record Time

Walpole Sophomore, Laura Igoe has burned through the Intermediate Method, Volume 1 in record time. She has completed one two-page lesson group at each weekly lesson - a feat unmatched in the history of Mr. Kay's lesson teaching. Completing a lesson group every two weeks is usually considered an excellent pace. Of course, it's not how fast you finish the book, it's what you learn while doing it that counts, and she has done well here too. Way to go Laura!

Mark Springett Makes the Countdown

7th grade trombonist, Mark Springett has reached the countdown stage (last ten pages) of Accent on Achievement, Book 1. Mark has made steady progress through the book to achieve this, checking off a few tunes each lesson. Mark attends the Beaver Country Day School, where he plays in the jazz band. Mark is also involved with competitive gymnastics.

Mark Karlson Makes Intermediate Level

Wayland Seventh Grader, Mark Karlson blasted into the Intermediate zone on Wednesday, October 17, 2007 by checking off the last piece in his Standard Of Excellence, Book 2 Method. He will now start the Intermediate Trombone Method - his "beginner" days officially behind him! Mark finished the book by passing the very difficult dance from the Nutcracker. It is four lines long, and a bit on the high side. It is tricky to pass because a student can only play it a few times in a lesson before their lips get too tired to continue, so Mark had to pace himself carefully and concentrate well. When asked how he kept his focus on that difficult last line, he said, "I just kept looking at the notes and didn't worry about it." Way to go, Mark!

Opportunities Abound with Summer Music Programs

click here for my listing of recommended camps and programs.


Honor Roll "Hall of Fame"

Click here for a list of my students and Alumni who participated in honors ensembls during their study.

Student News 2006-2007  

Matt Johnson wins Lincoln-Sudbury High School 9 Grade Musicianship Award for Band

Trombonist Matt Johnson was selected to receive the Musicianship Award from Lincoln-Sudbury High School. One such award is given for each grade level in the ensembles. Besides trombone, Matt's other interests include scouting, swimming, and antique automobiles. Matt swam on the Varsity Swim team, and is also rebuilding a 1930 Model A Ford, which he hopes to complete and drive by April, 2008. (5/07)

Danny Foner Rockets In To Book Two Countdown

Passing six items in one lesson, Natick fifth grader, Danny Foner reached the "countdown" stage of Accent On Achievement, Book Two. The countdown is the last ten pages of the book. With continued progress, it won't be long before Danny has officially reached the Intermediate Level! (5/07)

Two Make The Grade For High School Wind Ensemble

Wayland 9th grader, Andrew Becker has been selected for the schools top band, the Wind Ensemble. For the ensemble auditions, Andrew learned nine major scales and prepared two musical selections. In addition to his music, Andrew is active as a swimmer. Congratulations, Andrew.

Joining Andrew in the wind ensemble will be Liz on Tuba. Liz's primary instrument is the trombone, but she is able to help out the band on the much needed bass parts. Liz is also active on the High School softball team. (5/07)

Evan Lamont Prepares Senior Recital for Trombone and Piano

Wayland High School Senior Evan Lamont is preparing a solo recital for Friday, June 1, 2007 at the Little Theater of Wayland High School (264 Old Connecticut Path). The recital will feature jazz and classical selections on both piano and trombone. Evan will play piano works by Herbie Hancock, Saint-Saens, Gershwin, and Cole Porter. Trombone works will include duets by Tommy Pederson and Matt Finders and Morceau Symphonique by Guilmant. Evan's three music teachers, Joe Oneschuk, Steven Sussman, and Brian Kay, will be guest performers at the recital. Admission is free, and the general public is invited (and of course, refreshments will be served afterwards). (4/07)

Greg Platt Makes First Chair in All-Eastern Honors Band

Senior Trombonist Greg Platt of Medway just returned from the All Eastern Honor Band in Hartford, Connecticut, where he was selected to be the first chair trombonist. The festival is held every other year, and to reach it, Greg received top scores at both the district and state level. The All Eastern festival is made up of the best student players from eleven states, the District of Columbia, and US Military Schools in Europe.

Greg got to miss some school, and stay several nights at a hotel in Hartford. Rehearsals were held during the day, and the students attended concerts in the evening, including Empire Brass, and a violin rock band. Playing in the band was a powerful experience, and a special once in a lifetime experience. Bravo, Greg!!


Ben Roth Does Music Teaching Internship

Holliston High School Senior, Ben Roth is doing a music teaching internship this year at the Robert Adams Middle School. His internship is supervised by middle school director David Stanton - pictured above. Though Ben is not planning to major in music, he enjoys the challenge of being "Mr. Ben", working with the kids, and sharing his love of music. Ben found it interesting to see school from the perspective of "the director". Mr. Ben will conduct a piece, Two English Dances at the Spring Concert.


Dan Bernfeld Explores Varied Musical Interests


An active trombonist since fourth grade, Natick Senior Dan Bernfeld has branched out into popular music. Dan’s trombone activities have included making Senior District Band this year, and a heavy involvement in the Natick public school bands. He plans to major in music college.

Dan plays bass in the rock band Idiocity Killed the Cat. The band plays concerts mostly around Natick but is starting to expand to other towns, and will be playing at the Berklee performance Center in April. They released their first album this past winter called No Need to Rush, which is available at their shows or from any band member.

In addition to bass Dan has taught himself to play the guitar, and is working on piano and drums. For his senior project at school, Dan is learning multi-track recording, and will record a few songs playing every instrument in the mix.

About his musical intrests, Dan writes, “I am interested in writing music and I have written a few songs that my band plays. I am very interested in the Beatles and Bob Dylan and many other folk and rock music from the 60's and early 70's and these are most of my influences for the songs that I write. My trombone and classical playing have helped in my popular career by giving me a good base of understanding about music, allow me to understand balance better, and also it allows me to hear and create melodies that go together and blend with each other rather than some popular music that is more of just chords going together and strumming and things like that. It has also helped my ear develop better so that I can hear notes and translate melodies onto different instruments.”


Mark Karlson Hits Book Two Countdown

6th grade trombonist Mark Karlson has just hit the countdown for completing The Standard of Excellence Trombone Book II. The countdown is the last ten pages of the book, and Mark reached it by completing numbers 69, 70, and 72 (along with four others) in his lesson March 1. When he completes this book, he will move on to the Intermediate Trombone Method by Brian Kay. Keep up the great work, Mark!

Adam Grenier Moves On To Book Two

Wayland Middle School Trombonist, Adam Grenier completed the end of Accent On Achievement Book One on February 8, 2007. He now moves on to book two. As you can see from the photo, Adam accomplished this feat while injured with a broken leg. When asked how it was to pass Book One, Adam replied, "HARD!" How does he feel about passing it? "GOOD!" Way to go, Adam!

Tristan Waldron Completes Intermediate Method, Book One

11th grade Bass Trombonist, Tristan Waldron, of Dover completed the Kay Intermediate Method, Volume One on February 6, 2007. This is an especially challenging rite of passage for a bass trombonist because of the dauntingly long and high exercises on the last two pages. Tristan is looking forward to going on to the Volume Two Bass Trombone Edition, where he can stretch out more into the low range. Congratulations, Tristan!

Four Receive All-State Recommendations

Trombonist, Daniel Bernfeld of Natick earned his first spot in the Northeastern District Band, and also received an All-State recommendation. Dan also plays bass in some popular high school rock and roll bands.

Evan LaMont, a twelfth grade trombonist from Wayland earned his second spot in the Northeastern District band, and his first All-State recommendation. Evan has also received early admission to his first choice college, Dartmouth. Congratulations, Evan.

Senior Greg Platt, of Medway has been a regular at All State since his Freshman year, and earned another recommendation this year. He received the highest score in the Central District, and will also continue on to All-Eastern this winter.

Cybelle Smith, a Senior from Belmont once again has recieved a top score in the Northeastern District, and an All-State recommendation. She hopes to return for her second year at All-States.

All four have their work cut out for them as the All-State piece, the David Concerto ,is extremely demanding physically with many range and technique challenges. They are also hard at work on sight reading and minor scales in preparation for the audition in mid-January. Congratulations and good luck to all!


2006 Grads Moving on to College

David Kalish will attend Northeastern University as an Engineering Major.

Henry Pratt will attend University of Illinois as an Engineering Major.

Michael Silvestri will attend Harvard University.

Congratulations, and best wishes!

Rachel Freedman Thrives at Lawrence University

1/12/05 Rachel Freedman, a sophomore at Lawrence University, has been chosen for the National Band Association - Wisconsin (NBA-W) Intercollegiate Honor Band. The honor band, featuring 80 of the top student musicians from colleges and universities throughout Wisconsin, will perform a public concert Jan 29. Rachel is gaining a wealth of experience at Lawrence, and performs with the bands, a brass quintet, and other groups. Congratulations, Rachel!




Greg Platt is the First to Complete "Black Belt Level" Advanced Pack

greg finishes

On Saturday, July 29, 2006, Greg Platt made Brass Stages Music Studio history by becoming the first to complete the Advanced Pack. The hefty pack consists of 90 scale and arpeggio studies, 15 Bordogni vocalises in tenor and alto clef, 10 Tyrell etudes, 22 clef studies, 14 LaFosse etudes, 21 duets, and 60 tunes to be played by ear in multiple keys. The pack represents the trombone equivalent of at least the black belt level in martial arts. Greg will be a Senior next year at Medway High School. Way to go, Greg!

Honors Trombone Ensemble Debuts

At the Brass Stages annual student recital on June 26, a trombone quartet featuring top area high school students gave its inaugural performance. The ensemble included All-State trombonists Henry Forber-Pratt and Greg Platt, as well as Natick Trombonist Dan Bernfeld, and coach, Brian Kay. The group performed an arrangement of Haydn's Achieved is the Glorious Work and a challenging arrangement by Elkjer of Take 5. Also at the recital, Forber-Pratt performed Pryor's The Blue Bells of Scotland, Platt performed Guilmant's Morceau Symphonique, and Bernfeld played the Hasse Suite. Bravo to all.

Young Trombonists Tour Shires Trombone Factory

A group of trombone students of Brian Kay toured the S.E. Shires factory in Hopedale, MA over April School vacation. Young trombonists, including High School trombonists Daniel Bernfeld, of Natick, and Ben Roth of Holliston, got to see almost the entire process of making a trombone from the drawing of slide tubes to the hand hammering and spinning of bells. After the tour, the company graciously allowed the young trombonists to try out the various sizes and styles of trombones. A good and informative time was had by all! Thank you, Gabe and Steve, for the tour.

Platt Gets All-Eastern Recommendation

Medway trombonist, Greg Platt received a recommendation to the prestigious All-Eastern Music Festival, to be held in 2007. Top all-state musicians from the eastern states are selected to apply to the festival, which will rehearse and perform in early 2007. Congratulations, Greg!

Three Earn All-State Spots

Trombonist, Greg Platt of Medway performed in Symphony Hall in January as first chair trombonist with the All-State band. Greg, a junior, attended the festival for the third year. He has earned a spot each year since 9th grade! The musicians stayed at the Park Plaza hotel in Downtown Boston for the weekend of rehearsals, and enjoyed the intensive weekend of high-level music making.

Natick Trombonist Henry Pratt earned a spot as second trombonist with the All-State Orchestra. He performed Stravinsky's Firebird Suite with the orchestra in Symphony Hall. This was Henry's first year at all-states. He also performs with the New England Conservatory Youth Philharmonic, and NEC Prep Division Brass Ensembles through the chamber music program.

Cybelle Smith, a Junior from Belmont earned a spot in the All-State roster this year, and performed in Symphony hall with the band. Cybelle also performs as principal trombonist of the Massachusetts Wind Ensemble, and has toured internationally with that group.

Five Make Senior District

Junior Trombonist, Greg Platt, of Medway, earned the highest score in the Central District auditons, and a spot as first chair trombonist with the orchestra. Greg also received a recommendation to audition for the All-State festival in January.

Henry Pratt, a Senior at Natick High was a member of the first trombone section for the Northeast District Band. He also earned a recommendation for All-State, and will audition in January. Congratulations, Henry!

Junior trombonist, Cybelle Smith, of Belmont earned a spot in the Northeast Senior District Orchestra, as well as an All-State recommendation. She also performs as principal trombonist in the Massachusetts Youth Wind Ensemble. When not doing music or schoolwork, she keeps herself busy with a biology internship, and studying Japanese!

In his first few months on trombone, Michael Silvestri, a Senior from Natick High School successfuly auditioned for the Northeast Senior District Band. Since his Freshman year, Michael has earned top seats in District and All-State on Euphonium. Michael made the bold move of auditioning on a new instrument so that he would have the opportunity to study trombone intensively his Senior year. He felt that knowing trombone in addition to euphonium would open up more avenues of music making opportunities in college and beyond. Though he didn't get to return to All-State for a fourth year, he was pleased that he was able to get up to speed on trombone quickly enough to make Disticts this year. Bravo, Michael!

Evan Lamont, a Junior Trombonist from Wayland Hight School made his first appearance at the Northeast Senior District Festival Band. Evan is active on many musical fronts - he is also is an accomplished pianist and member of an acapella singing group. Besides his musical activities, Evan enjoys sports, including Crew and Golf.


Chris Whitney Gets The Nod

Chris Whitney, a soon to be 11th grader at Wayland High School has earned seats in the Wind Ensemble and Jazz Ensemble. Membership in these top tier group is by competitive audition.

Michael Silvestre Returns to District (and goes on to All Eastern!)

Michael Silvestre, 11th Grade Euphonium player, performed as first chair euphonium with the Massachusetts Northeast District Band this January. He received an All-State recommendation, and will travel this winter to participate in the All Eastern Music Festival - a special honor and opportunity given to top All-State performers on a bi-annual basis.

Cybelle Smith Makes Senior District

Belmont Sophomore Trombonist, Cybelle Smith has won a spot by competitive audition in the Northeast Massachusetts Senior District Band. Cybelle enjoys trombone along with other interests including Japanese language and culture, and Biology.

Stan Seiden Returns to N.E. Senior District

11th Grade Wayland Trombonist, Stan Seiden has earned a spot in the Northeast Massachusetts Senior District Band. Thankfully, this year's preparation season was less eventful for Stan than last year's, when Stan made the band just a few weeks after recovering from a broken arm!

Greg Platt Makes Senior District

Medway Sophomore Trombonist, Greg Platt has won a spot by competitive audition in the Central Massachusetts Senior District Band, as well as an All-State recommendation. Greg also performs in the Scholarship Brass Quintet at New England Conservatory Prep Division, the divisions premier brass chamber ensemble.


Michael Silvestre Returns to All-State

Michael Silvestre, 10th Grade Euphonium player from Natick High School returned to Symphony Hall for his second performance with the Massachusetts All-State Band under the direction of Frank Battisti. Music is one of several interests for Michael, including Art, Speech Team, and Track.

Two Freshman Make All-State!

Greg Platt, 9th grade trombonist from Medway kicked off his first year of eligibility by making the Massachusetts Central Senior District and All-State festivals by competitive audition. After being selected for a top seat in his district, Greg qualified to try out for All-State and subsequently earned a spot in the Band. He performed this winter in Symphony Hall under the direction of the legendary Frank Battisti. Greg also plays in a brass ensemble of talented high school students which meets at New England Conservatory.

Ben Bernard, 9th grade trombonist from Sharon, also wasted no time during his first year of eligibility in making the Massachusetts Southeast Senior District and All-State festivals. After being selected for a top seat in his district, Ben qualified to try out for All-State and subsequently earned a spot in the Band. He performed this winter in Symphony Hall under the direction of the legendary Frank Battisti. Ben also performs with the GYBSO youth orchestra, which meets Sunday afternoons at Boston University.

Mark Ayoub performs with Senior District Jazz Band

Mark Ayoub, a 12th grade trombonist from Needham was selected to play with the Southeast Massachesetts Senior District Jazz Band. He performed with the band this year, and says he had a fantastic time, and was challenged and stimulated to play his best!

Stan Seiden Comes Back From Injury to Make Senior District

10th Grade Wayland Trombonist, Stan Seiden made the Northeast Senior District Band for the second year in a row. The audition was just a few short weeks after Stan recovered from a broken bone, which prevented him from practicing for several weeks. Stan's focus and previous work and experience paid off with a successful audition, and he was able to perform in the Festival for his second year.

Allison Kone Earns spot in NEC Scholarship Brass

12th Grader, Allison Kone of Milton, has joined New England Conservatory Prep Division's flagship brass ensemble, the Scholarship Brass Quintet. This is the top brass ensemble in the chamber music program, and all members participate on a full scholarship basis. The group meets for an hour and a half on Saturdays and plays a variety of exciting concerts, which in past years has included a performance on National Public Radio's From the Top series. Allison was also selected for the South East District Senior Festival. Congratulations Allison!


3 Win Major College Scholarships

Josh Filgate Wins $10,000 Talent Scholarship at Northeastern

Graduating Senior, Josh Filgate, of Boylston Massachusetts has won a very special talent based music scholarship to attend Northeastern University. Josh will major in engineering at Northeastern, and the scholarship is one of 5 earmarked for talented students who will play in Northeastern's ensembles, but not necessarily major in music. An estimated 200 tried out for the scholarship. Another notable fact about this audition was that it contained mandatory improvisation for all players.

Here are Josh's comments about what worked for him, which I asked him to send me to help future students who might audition for similar scholarships.

The more important things that people should know, are that I am not a music major and that all i had to do was audition. The audition consisted of classical...and mandatory improvisation--even for classical clarinet players that walked in before me! I went in completely relaxed: i went in to Boston alone, without anyone to distract me or stress me out. While many of the students were there in shirts and ties, i wore a comfortable collared shirt and a pair of old cords. I also got to the audition at least an hour early, so that i could relax and warm up. Most importantly, i walked in with the confidence of successfully auditioning for countless central districts and state ensembles. Finally, all i took into the audition room was my horn and my folder--with my music and a copy of my resume. In short, i took every possible step to make sure that i would be relaxed and as focused as possible for my audition and it turned out pretty well!

Talented music students would be well advised to look into the possibility of this and similar scholarships when considering college applications and preparation!

Rachel Freedman Earns College Scholarship

Needham Senior, Rachel Freedman, a Bass Trombonist, has been accepted through early admission, with a merit scholarship to the Lawrence Conservatory at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin. She will major in music education.

Rachel has also won the Anita M. Reinke Memorial Scholarship. This scholarship is awarded to a Needham High School Student who is majoring in Music Education or Performance and who demonstrates outstanding musical ability and an outstanding contribution to the Needham school music program.

The Lawrence University Conservatory of Music, now in its second century of educating students for careers in music, is a nationally recognized conservatory devoted exclusively to the education of undergraduates within a distinguished college of the liberal arts and sciences. A superb faculty of performers, composers, scholars, and teachers prides itself on the individual attention given to more than 350 music majors who pursue their undergraduate degrees at Lawrence.

Recent graduates and current students have won significant honors, including the Metropolitan Opera Competition, the MTNA Solo and Chamber Music Competitions, the Carmel Chamber Music Competition, and Down Beat magazine's Outstanding Jazz Composition Award and Outstanding Jazz Solo Performance Award, among others. Conservatory alumni are members of symphony orchestras, opera companies, and conservatory faculties; others are writing soundtracks or designing software applicable to music.

Rachel also performs in the Youth Symphony Orchestra at New England Conservatory and a brass quartet, also at NEC..

Matt Wan Wins Chancellor's Scholarship

Matt Wan, Senior trombone student at NEC Prep. has been awarded a Chancellor's Scholarship to study music performance at University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Matt also won the Randolph Music Department Scholarship, a three hundred dollar award, a five hundred dollar award given to an outstanding alumnus of the Donovan Elementary School, and the Coca Cola of Needham Scholarship. Matt performs with many groups including NEC's Youth Philharmonic, MYWE, and GBYSO.

Jennifer Ober wins State-Wide Composition Contest

Jennifer Ober, Sophomore Trombone Student from Hopkinton, has won the 1st place in Musical Composition, and Outstanding Interpretation award of the Massachusetts Division of the National PTA Reflections Contest 2002-2003. Her composition therefore went on to National Level competition, where she received an Award of Participation.

Jennifer was also the 2nd Chair trombonist for the Massachusetts Central District Senior Orchestra this year.

Congratulations, Jennifer!

Rachel Freedman Wins Top Band Award

Rachel Freedman has won the John Philip Sousa Band Award at Needham High School. This singular award is for outstanding musicianship and leadership. Rachel will continue on as a Music Education major at Lawrence Conservatory (see story above).

Three earn All-State Positions

Michael Silvestre, a ninth grade euphonium player from Natick, Christopher Doyle, twelth grade trombonist from Needham, and Matt Wan, twelth grade trombone student at the New England Conservatory Preparatory Division have earned seats in the Massachusetts 2003 All-State festival. Congratulations to all three for this top honor.

Also auditioning, after receiving top scores in District Festival Auditions were Mark Ayoub, Josh Filgate, Jennifer Ober, and Allison Kone. Congratulations on your top scores.

Christopher Doyle joins NEC Prep's Scholarship Brass Quintet

12th Grade trombonist, Christopher Doyle from Needham has won the coveted spot of trombonist with the Scholarship Brass Quintet at New England Conservatory's Preparatory Division. This is the marquee group in the chamber music program at NEC. Members receive weekly 90 minute tuition free coaching. Past concerts of the group have included Jordan Hall concerts and a National Public Radio performance. Christopher is also the principal trombonist in the Massachusetts Youth Wind Ensemble, and has earned a spot in the Senior District Band with an All-State recommendation.

Stan Seiden Makes Senior District

In his first year of eligibility, 9th Grader, Stan Seiden of Wayland has earned a seat in the Northeast District Band. In previous years as a middle school student, Stan received top seats in the Junior District Festival and participated in the Junior Massachusetts Youth Wind Ensemble, with performances in Jordan Hall.

Michael Silvestre earns First Chair Euphonium in N.E. District

Freshman, Michael Silvestre of Natick has captured the first chair Euphonium position in the Northeast District Band. Congratulations to Michael who has won this position in his youngest year of availablity and has earned an All-state recommendation. Michael recently received the rank of "Advanced Euphonium Player" by completing both volumes of the Kay Intermediate Method.

Allison Kone 1st trombone in Southeast District Band

11th grade Trombonist from Milton, Allison Kone will play first trombone with the Southeast District Band. She is a student at the New England Conservatory Preparatory Division where she takes private lessons and performs with a brass quartet and the Youth Symphony.

Rachel Freedman Joins Youth Symphony

Senior Bass Trombonist, Rachel Freedman, of Needham will perform Jordan Hall concerts and a European tour with the New England Conservatory Youth Sympony Orchestra. Rachel spends Saturday afternoons at NEC where she participates in a brass quartet, and youth orchestra. Rachel plans to major in music education in college next year.

Mark Ayoub makes S.E. District Jazz Band

Needham trombonist, Mark Ayoub, an 11th grader has earned a position in the Southeast Senior District Jazz Band. Mark has also earned an All-state recommendation.

Josh Filgate is Bass Trombonist for Central District Jazz Band

Senior Bass Trombonist, Josh Filgate of Boylston will return to the bass trombone chair of the Central District Jazz band this year. He has also earned an all-state recommendation. Josh is considering a minor or double major in music in college next year.


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