Last week, the Wm. E. Hay Stettler Secondary Campus band program received a donation of $2,000 from local radio station Q93.3.
“It is wonderful to receive this money in support of our music program, as all studies show how important learning music is to young people,” said Band Director Eric Rahn. “So, with the wonderful donations from Domino and from our own radio station Q93.3 I would love to use some of the money towards buying a couple of larger, used baritones to help meet the needs of some of the younger players.”
Rahn said that they were very expensive to rent elsewhere so it would be nice to be able to offer a more affordable alternative to young players.
“The band can always use more tuba and baritone players,” added Rahn. “I would also like to add some auxiliary percussion equipment to that section, as composers quite often want an array of percussion in their pieces but we don’t always have everything they ask for.”
Rahn said last year when the radio made another donation, he used the funds to expand the band program’s music library.
“Last year was quite the year with the new configuration of the schools,” said Rahn. “This change in structure opened up an opportunity to start the band program in Grade 5 and was a learning curve from both sides of the conducting chair.”
But, according to Rahn, the kinks have been ironed out and it is a far less stressful start with the younger groups this year.
“We also had a very successful local festival with the wonderful adjudicating of Karl Schwonik,” stated Rahn. “He has been recognized on many levels for his percussion skills and primarily with all his involvement in the jazz community.”
Rahn said that it was “a real treat” to have the students to get to benefit from his experience.
The Stettler Concert Band had an exciting year as well with their trip to New Orleans. “This was a 77-piece band consisting of players from grades 8 to 12,” added Rahn. “It had been a long time dream of mine to take a group to this musically rich part of our world, and the students were great ambassadors for our school, community, and country.”
The funds that have been donated by Q93.3 come from contributions to Canadian Content Development (CCD) made by broadcasters to initiatives that aid in the development and promotion of Canadian musical and spoken word content for broadcast.