Griffin Light, a senior at Los Alamos High School, has been selected as a Flute 1 in the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) 2020 All-National Concert Band Honor Ensemble. He is the only selection from New Mexico.
“I’m ecstatic at having been selected, and although there have been moments where I’ve doubted myself and even occasionally considered the possibility that this was a fluke, I think that the work I put into this specific audition, as well as during my entire nine years playing the flute, were enough to get me awarded this honor,” said Light. “In short, I’m very proud of myself and the work I’ve put into this, and thankful for the teachers who have supported and taught me up to this point: Andrea Dowdy, who gives me private lessons; and Zane Meek, Ryan Finn, and Deanna Teague who all work in the LAHS band program.”
“We are extremely proud of Griffin’s selection to the NAfME All-National Honor Band,” said Meek. “To be selected to this group shows his high level of dedication to his craft and requires a lot of hard work. It is an honor to have him as a representative for Los Alamos High School music program.”
Light joins 115 other students representing 36 states. The first ever All-National Honor Ensembles virtual event will include several rehearsals with the 2020 ANHE Conductors and workshops with renowned clinicians. Each ensemble will create a final, recorded performance that will be premiered online during the NAfME Music In Our Schools Month® in March.
The NAfME All-National Honor Ensembles (ANHE) represent the top performing high school musicians in the United States and include a concert band, symphony orchestra, mixed choir, jazz ensemble, guitar ensemble and modern band. So much more than a musical showcase, the ANHE program is a comprehensive and educational experience.
The ensembles will be comprised of:
- Concert Band led by Rodney Dorsey
- Symphony Orchestra led by Nobuyoshi Yasuda
- Mixed Choir led by Frances Fonza
- Guitar Ensemble led by Chuck Hulihan
- Jazz Ensemble led by Todd Stoll, with Guest Soloist Terell Stafford
- Modern Band led by Tony Sauza and Mary Claxton
The names, schools, and states, as well as music directors, of the 552 2020 All-National Honor Ensemble students are available at nafme.org/ANHE.
Light auditioned last spring.
“The process was relatively simple; there was a piece that was required for the flute audition, and an option to submit an additional piece of our choosing so I played an excerpt from Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody no. 2 on the piccolo,” Light explained. “I recorded videos of both of these and submitted them through the NAfME website.”
Rehearsals were held via online webinars. Instructors talked through pieces, and occasionally, in sectionals, had students play small excerpts.
“The concert is yet to happen, but it will consist of all of the musicians submitting videos of their parts to be edited together into one video,” Light said.
Light is in the process of applying to colleges and considering a major.
“I’ve applied undeclared to most schools, but I think I might end up settling on engineering or another science field. As for music, I definitely plan to keep it in my life whether it be as a minor or if I choose to dual major in it alongside something else,” he said.
The National Association for Music Education, among the world’s largest arts education organizations, is the only association that addresses all aspects of music education. NAfME advocates at the local, state, and national levels; provides resources for teachers, parents, and administrators; hosts professional development events; and offers a variety of opportunities for students and teachers. The Association has supported music educators at all teaching levels for more than a century. With more than 60,000 members teaching millions of students nationwide, the organization is the national voice of music education in the United States.