Nearly 1,000 high school students for music competition

When Marietta College’s Dr. Daniel Monek agreed to co-chair the Ohio Music Educators Association District IX High School Solo & Ensemble competition he was expecting about 450 students.

With the event scheduled for Feb. 4 on Marietta College’s campus, Monek and his fellow co-chair Marshall Kimball are preparing for nearly 1,000 students to participate in the all-day competition.

“It is many more students than we anticipated, but it’s a good problem to have and representative of the breadth of music educations that is going on in Ohio schools” Monek said. “We are pleased for the opportunity to support the hard work of these high school directors and students by hosting this important event in the district. It’s also a chance for them to experience and see Marietta College. So it is a win-win situation.”

Monek, Chairman of the Edward E. MacTaggert Department of Music, said the 983 students from eight counties in Ohio will compete on Saturday, Feb. 4, all across campus. The majority of the judged performances will take place in Hermann Fine Arts, Thomas Hall, Band Hall and Alma McDonough Auditorium.

The eight Ohio counties that will be represented are Belmont, Guernsey, Harrison, Monroe, Morgan, Muskingum, Noble and Washington. Monek said 22 high schools will also be present, along with 11 judges selected by the Ohio Music Educators Association.

Registration begins at 8 a.m. and the competition should be completed by 5 p.m.

Monek said the competitions are divided between instrumental and vocal, and within those divisions will be groups based on skill level. In addition the music department and its chapter of the aspiring music educators will invite any student earning a top grade in the highest division back to campus on March 3 to compete in an Honors Recital. This event will coincide with the music department’s celebration of Music in Our Schools month.

“The students will have a chance to earn cash prizes, as well as be eligible for a talent scholarship at Marietta, but most importantly we will be able to honor the hard work and talent these young musicians invest in their art.” Monek said.

Monek said he expects more than 100 Marietta students will volunteer for any variety of assignments during the competition. Monek acknowledges that parking could be an issue this day, but he has worked with the College Police Department to alleviate traffic and parking concerns.

Kimball, co-chair of the event and Director of Bands and Instrumental Activities, said, “This is an opportunity we have discussed for the last two years and we decided to take it on this year. As a band director who has participated in this event for many years, I realize the importance of this event to the development of music programs. It a great opportunity for the music department and the College to show this type of support for music programs throughout all these counties. It will be a very busy but rewarding day.”

College Police Chief Tom Saccenti has requested the city close parking on Fourth Street near the College on Friday and Saturday, as this will be used for bus parking and as a drop-off area.

The College will also close the row of parking on the south side of Butler Street near the Hermann Fine Arts Center lot, as this will also be a drop-off area. The Physician Assistant lot, as well as the two auxiliary lots off Butler, will be closed Friday evening and Saturday for event parking. Additional bus parking will be available at Don Drumm Stadium and Marietta Middle School.