On November 2 and 3 John Willingham and Steven Butz participated in the GISA All-Select Honor Band at Woodward Academy.

The GISA All-Select Honor band is a band comprised of students that school directors nominate.  The talented Upper School musicians were nominated by band director and director of Mount Vernon’s Fine Arts Department, Chris Moore.

John Willingham was first introduced to the trumpet in the sixth grade and has been first chair every year since. Some of John’s accomplishments include being selected and performing three times in the Georgia Music Educators Association (GMEA) Honor Band playing as 16th chair the first year progressing to second chair in year three. In the spring of 2012, John was nominated to audition for UGA’s Middle School Band of the Southeast, where he not only made the highest UGA Honor Band, he accomplished a third chair out of nearly 300 trumpeters.

Other accomplishments for John include the honor of being selected as the 2012 Director’s Outstanding Musician Award winner while attending PCMS.  He was lead trumpet in the PCMS Jazz Band, the Trumpet Festival of the Southeast and three time first chair trumpet at the Atlanta Trumpet Festival.  Just this past week John was third chair trumpet at the GISA All-Select Band and scored his second straight “A” rating at the GMEA Solo and Ensemble event.

Steven Butz has been playing French Horn since his 5th grade year. His love of this instrument began because John Grove let him switch from trumpet to French Horn in the middle of the school year.  He has been playing it for MVPS band since, and has participated in the District Band competition and performances.  Steven even represented MVPS at the All State Middle School Band Concert in Savannah last year.

Congratulations to both boys on a job well done, continue with your passion for music!
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