NSMS bands, chorus take home multiple 1st place honors at ‘Music in the Parks’


Holyoke, Mass. – A group of 104 music students from North Smithfield Middle School took a short trip to Massachusetts on Friday, May 27, returning home with a pile of awards and honors from an annual festival competition.

The middle school music department participated in Music in the Parks, a festival for bands, orchestras and choirs from across New England in grades 6 through 12, for the first time in three years. Music teacher Elise Felker and Band Director John Knasas traveled with the students to Holyoke High School and the United Congregational Church of Holyoke to perform for adjudication.

And the Northmen musicians left their mark, with “superior,” ratings for their performances.

The competition was followed by a trip to Six Flags New England, where the talented group enjoyed rides and an awards banquet.

The NSMS Concert Band scored a 95.5 average, taking first place honors. The chorus scored a 90.75 average, also coming in first. The jazz band was also a first place winner with a 93.5 average. Alto saxophonist Lucas Comeau was named Outstanding Jazz Soloist.

And the entire group was acknowledged with an Esprit de Corps Award for the North Smithfield Middle School Music program, given to those who display an exemplary attitude of positive support and outstanding personal behavior throughout the festival.

The 7th and 8th grade students were accompanied by 10 chaperones.

“Thanks to all of the students and chaperones for making it such a great day and representing North Smithfield with pride,” noted district officials of the successful outing. “Well done.”

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