Music department wraps up Music Performance Assessment season

The music department finished its Music Performance Assessments earlier this month. Chorus received a rating of Excellent at their MPA on March 6 at Eau Gallie High School, orchestra received an overall rating of Superior for all three performing orchestras at theirs on March 4 at Heritage High School, and concert band received an Excellent at theirs on March 13 at Bayside High School.

“[The orchestra students] did a very good job,” orchestra string consultant Jacqueline Bishop said. “A lot of things we worked on in class came together on the stage, and by what the judges had to say, our actions and practicing came across to them, which was great.”

At MPA, groups perform three pieces in front of a panel of three judges, along with a separate sight reading assessment, and are rated in a variety of categories and given an overall rating of Poor, Fair, Good, Excellent or Superior. 

“I was very proud of the ratings that we earned,” band director Justin Snively said. “It’s actually one of the highest ratings that West Shore earned in over a decade in the band [program].” 

Snively said that more work could have been done to get a higher rating.

“A couple of weeks ago, I was thinking, ‘You know what? I think we’re really, really close to a Superior, but I don’t know if it’s going to happen this year,’” he said. “I think we have a little bit more work to do, but one of the optimistic things about this year in our ratings is that over 50 percent of our ensemble is eighth graders. Most of them will be in band next year and the next year and then the next year and then the next year, so it’s only up from here.”

Chorus director Kristen Ross said that she wishes that the judges would have given more advice.

“I wish the adjudicators would’ve given more feedback on what we could improve instead of what we did well, because [while] I’m glad we did things well, we’re going to [need] feedback to get better,” she said.

Freshman and chorus board member Aiden Bausum said that he wishes people put in more effort.

“[I wish they put] a little bit more passion [into their singing],” he said. “Not a lot of people were singing with passion, and I was also very stressed, so I understand why it wasn’t great.” 

Ross said she hopes to have more students to take to MPA next year.

“I would really really love to have more people included in the program,” she said. “I’m definitely taking the middle schoolers next year, so that will add a completely different element to what we’re going to do.”


By Daniel Mirell