Viera’s Wind Ensemble invited to perform at national festival


Published:

The Viera High School band's Wind Ensemble has been invited to play in the 20th annual Music For all National Concert Band Festival in Indianapolis in March.

CARL KOTALA

For the second time in its history, the Viera High School band is taking its show on the road.

Viera’s 55-member Wind Ensemble has been invited to play at the 20th annual Music For all National Concert Band Festival, which is set for March 12 to 14 in Indianapolis.

“We are one of maybe 20 high school ensembles that was invited through a blind audition process,” Viera band director Nick Eggen said.

“It’s not competitive. We’ll perform at Butler University and get feedback from some clinicians that work at the national level in our music field.”

Unlike in 2017, when the Viera band took a bus to perform at the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans, band members will take a plane ride to Indianapolis.

“We have interesting challenges, like we have to transport tubas in a plane … things we’ve never had to deal with before,” Eggen said.

Max Reed, Viera’s band captain, said getting the chance to perform “at a national facility will be really cool.” He is also looking forward to “meeting other people from around the country with similar interests.”

The senior is also looking forward to the possibility of seeing snow for what would be the second time in his life.

In addition to performing, the students also will get to take master classes with faculty from Butler University and the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.

They’ll also get to hear other ensembles play and there also will be performances by an honor jazz band and an honor orchestra.

Keven Luciano, Viera’s senior drum major, is looking forward to taking the masters classes.

“I’m really excited to learn more about the flute — which I play — more than just what I learn here and what I learn at home,” he said.

Viera’s marching band is broken up into four concert ensembles that perform as their own separate groups. The wind ensemble represents the school’s most talented musicians.

The trip to Indianapolis figures to be a memorable experience for Viera band members for a number of reasons.

“While we’re in Indianapolis, we’re hoping to sightsee a little bit,” Eggen said. “Mostly, we want to give the kids a good musical experience.”

With the cost of the trip expected to be $1,600 per student, the band program is looking for sponsorships and will be putting together several fundraising events.

For more information about helping the band raise funds for its trip, go to vieramusic.com.