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Elementary Honor Band Takes 1st Place in Festival

May 03, 2015 11:58AM ● By Jeanne Fratello
The Manhattan Beach Unified School District's Elementary Honor Band took home a first-place trophy and earned a score of "Excellent" at a Music in the Parks festival on Saturday at Knott's Berry Farm. The 37-member band is comprised of 4th- and 5th-grade students representing all five Manhattan Beach elementary schools.

"I am very proud of the work they did," said MBUSD elementary band teacher Timothy Nail. "They all work together very well and I think they played their best today."

For the competition, the band played "Gates of Destiny" and "Cross Current." The band meets for rehearsals once per week and has only played together since January.

The honor band is one of very few elementary school bands that participate in similar festivals. At Saturday's event, schools came from as far as Lake Arrowhead, San Bernardino, and San Marcos. Manhattan Beach was the only district with an elementary school band at the festival.

The Manhattan Beach Education Foundation provides a grant of $400,000 to the schools for music education, providing 40% of all music instructional costs for grades K to 12. All students in grades 1-5 receive weekly music instruction, which forms the foundation for the district's award-winning middle and high school programs.

The MBUSD elementary honor band will perform once again on Thursday, May 7, at 6:00 p.m. in the Pacific Elementary School cafeteria.

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