A Prestigious Performance for Buncombe Musicians
A Prestigious Performance for Buncombe Musicians
Posted on 11/04/2016

By: Benjamin Rickert, Communications Department

Students from Buncombe County are eager to showcase their talents for the whole state this month.

Each year, a handful of musical ensembles are chosen to perform at the prestigious NC Music Educators Association’s annual conference. This year, two of these musical groups proudly hail from Buncombe County Schools and in the coming days both Roberson High and Cane Creek Middle schools will be sending students to perform in Winston-Salem.

Ms. Aleisa Baker, director of the Advanced Ensemble at Roberson, calls their upcoming choral performance a “leap of faith.”

She says, “The faith you have to have in your student singers is the center component of success. The hours and hours of rehearsal time that go into this level of performance is almost immeasurable. But when the time comes to step onstage- and I get to look into the eyes of these amazing young people- I know that together we will make music and memories we will always carry with us.”

Hayley Robertson has been singing at Roberson for four years and says Monday’s performance will be the highlight of her high school career. “A lot of people don’t understand how big of a deal this is to the performing arts world," she explains. "Three North Carolina high school choirs are chosen to perform at this event out of 1,084 high schools! When we sing on stage Monday, I will be looking out onto hundreds of music educators...one of which will be me in the future.”

From Cane Creek Middle School, the 8th grade band will also be performing under the leadership of Mr. Clif Dodson. The students have added many extra hours of practice to get ready for their performance, even regularly attending Saturday morning practices.
Emma Barlowe, a tenor saxophonist, says “It is an honor and privilege to perform at this event. It has been really hard work but very rewarding.”

Timothy Dodson, the band’s 1st chair Alto Saxophonist, says that the effort has been both enjoyable and challenging. “We have worked really hard… and we are excited to share our talents with the music teachers in our state.”

The Cane Creek band will be performing a composition by Paul Murtha that was premiered with the TCRHS band last June in memory of former trumpet player and Roberson graduate Kendall Wernet, who passed away in 2014 at the age of twenty.

“The students love the music and have really connected with it,” explains Mr. Dodson. “We are so honored to be selected and hope we make our fellow teachers in Buncombe County proud.”

-- Update: November 15, 2016 --
See the photo gallery below for photos of Roberson's Advanced Ensemble on site at the NCMEA conference in rehearsal and performance! (Photos used by permission of Mr. Benjamin Clark)

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