The fall sports season is over, and it is wonderful to see athletes being recognized in the local newspapers for their outstanding performances. But there is another group of students whose accomplishments go largely unrecognized.

Each year, young musicians audition for district and regional band, chorus and orchestra, as well as other musical groups. These are blind auditions, with the students performing unseen for multiple judges and usually involve months of practice and preparation. After reaching each level, the musicians must re-audition to qualify for the next performance level.

The musical groups then meet to practice for about two days. The performances these young musicians present are truly outstanding -- if you ever get the opportunity to attend one, you will be impressed with the talent and hard work displayed.

Unfortunately, these students receive little recognition. Sometimes there is a brief list in the newspapers, but nothing in comparison with the stories done on young athletes. Even those select students that reach the state level of performance are not featured.

All the young musicians in our community give us countless hours of enjoyment throughout the year -- from half-time shows and concerts to parades and veterans' events.

And off the stage, they put in countless hours of practice -- both individually and in groups -- and often supplement their instruction with private lessons.

Both they and their parents also show their dedication by working on the behind-the-scenes things that are needed, including the endless fundraising that is needed by every group to operate.


Many of these musicians will continue to share their gifts beyond high school, in local orchestras, ensembles, bands and choirs. Some will even attain national recognition.

I challenge our newspapers to make recognizing these outstanding young people an annual event.

Joy Rusonis

West Manchester Twp.