On Thurs., Jan. 17, the McIntosh band traveled to Athens to participate in Janfest at the University of Georgia. Janfest is a four day event where high school bands come from all around the state to perform in the UGA auditorium.
There was a tremendous amount of preparation that went into the performance. The band has been playing their performance pieces since the beginning of the year. They began working on the pieces immediately so they would be fully prepared when performance time came around. Practices after school took place two to three times a week and they would last from one hour to sometimes four hours.
Percussionist Ariel Faulise explained the amount of work that was put into the performance. “We had many after-school practices where we came together as a band to get our music ready for the performance,” said Faulise, “ As the date got closer, we became more and more like a team. Everyone had to do their part to make the songs sound great. All of us put in a lot of effort to make Janfest a possibility.”
The process of getting into Janfest was interesting as well. The band had recordings that they sent in to the judges at Janfest. The judges picked the bands that they wanted to perform at the festival based off of the recordings that they heard. There were a limited amount of spots, so with hard work, the McIntosh band was able to secure a spot at the festival.
Tenor Saxophone player, Hunter Banks, shared the experience from his point of view. “The hall they have there that we played in sounds so much better than the band room or the McIntosh Auditorium,” said Banks, “The energy it brings to play in front of an almost full-house is exhilarating and hearing yourself play songs you could barely play at half the tempo five months before, is just amazing.”