Maryville High School students always end their academic year with a concert at the Theater in the Bicentennial Greenbelt Park. They have done that for 12 years. Every few year or so, they invite fellow band members at Maryville Intermediate School and Maryville Middle School to join them for an end-of-year concert extravaganza.
This year more than 260 Maryville Intermediate School students joined approximately 170 students from Maryville Middle School and about 140 students from Maryville High School to present a concert of pop music and jazz as well as more traditional school band fare.
Gathering almost 600 student musicians to perform for nearly as many spectators is no small feat, particularly when three schools are involved. Maryville High School band director Tom DeLozier said it's a logistical challenge, but it's also fun.
DeLozier said the schools plan a year in advance for the concerts. "Each individual band program chooses its own music and prepares for six to seven weeks for the performance," he said.
For the Maryville High School band program, the Concert in the Park was bittersweet. The group is losing 33 graduating seniors this year. Several will be building on the skills and experiences gained in the MHS band by studying music in a college.