By Janee Law
Twelve Northport high schoolers have been selected to the NYSSMA All-State festival, breaking a school record.
In addition, a total of 23 students, including the 12 selected for All-State, have been selected for the 2017 NYSCAME All-County music festival.
“We’re very proud of our kids that are participating both at county level and the state level,” said Izzet Mergen, director of fine and performing arts at Northport-East Northport Schools. “They’re both absolutely wonderful accomplishments and we’re real proud of the kids.”
In order to be selected for the NYSCAME, 11th and 12th graders must score among the top NYSCAME musicians across the county. After students are selected, they go on to participate in three intensive rehearsal sessions to prepare for a concert, which will be held Nov. 17 at Hauppauge High School.
Students selected for NYSCAME include Ashleigh Basel, Lee Ann Chu, John Cooney, Bobby Cozzette, Lucas Cusati, Ryan Dee, Anna Denfeld, Jennie Dworkin, Kyle Flanagan, Justin Fligstein, Pegeen Friese, Julia Hahn, Jennifer Halpern, Nicholas Holfester, Amelia Libbey, Nicole Millmann, Luke Petronella, Gabriel Sherman, Katie Sierra, Benjamin Strait, Daniel Rodriguez, Madison Tamayo, and Natalie Van Wickler.
“Our participation in All-County honors ensembles has consistently grown over the past five years, which is great and that’s something to be proud of,” Mergen said. “A larger percentage of students are taking advantage of those opportunities. Despite the number of school age children diminishing, we have even more students participating, which is wonderful.”
Students who will also be attending the NYSSMA All-State festival and compete on a statewide level are Basel, Cusati, Dee, Denfeld, Dworkin, Fligstein, Hahn, Holfester, Millmann, Petronella, Sherman, and Sierra.
These students scored among the top musicians in New York State and will travel to Rochester to perform at the Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre from Nov. 30 to Dec. 3.
Mergen added, “We’re very proud of our students and their teachers, and we look forward to hearing other great things as they move forward in their education within the district and beyond.”