South Hamilton School bands have again been invited to perform
at the Iowa Bandmaster Association Convention.


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The South Hamilton Record News ran this 2019 article:  The South Hamilton Community School District will have a band playing at the Iowa Bandmasters Association State Convention for the second year in a row.   This time the South Hamilton High School Concert Band has been chosen to play for this prestigious event.   The IBA convened listening panels made up of elementary, junior high, and high school directors from every IBA district to select through blind audition the 2019 Conference Honor Ensembles and South Hamilton was selected as the Class 2A Band to perform.   Last year the South Hamilton Middle School Band was chosen through the same blind audition process.   Both bands are under the direction of Ms. Alexa Gibbs.   Each grade level can only submit an audition recording every three years, so this indeed is an honor the South Hamilton Music Department can be proud of.


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The South Hamilton Record News ran this 2022 article:  The Iowa Bandmasters Association (IBA) has selected the South Hamilton Junior High Concert Band to perform at the IBA Conference at the Des Moines Marriott in May.   Through a plind audition process, the band was selected as the best 1A-2A junior high band in Iowa.   Congratulations to the South Hamilton Junior High Concert Band and Director Alexa Gibbs on this huge honor!

Lillie Ammerman
Kyra Leahy
Vivian Swenson
Shali Soder
Riah Van De Pol
Kimber Maakestad
Makayla Henderson
Ember Cuba Valle
Adriana Ramirez
Hannah Dally
Nathan Cross

Kaylen Trask^
Emma Martin
Karlie Hill
Bryn Whitney
Sophie Nibe
Addie Uttecht
Katrinia Sailer
Sherlin Gonzalez-Moralez
Bianca Seaton
Maddux Becker
Abby Richardson
Grace Nobiling
Grace Wirth
Adam Olthoff
Cici Herrick
Christina Babcock
Hailey Johnson
Mackay Beach

Bass Clarinet
Tanner Twedt

Alto Saxophone
Abby Moline*
Claire Hewitt^
Titus Herrick
Hayden Hill
Ella Angove
Natalia Valles-Folkerds
Rosie Collins

Tenor Saxophone
Ethan Christensen*

Isabel Swenson*
Cheyanna Daleske
Landon Geerdes
Layla Joachim
Valerie Harlan
Rodrigo Romero-Cruz

French Horn
Samantha Tilley

Jose Babcock^
Parker Stuck
Ryan Oskvig
Sam Ascher

Daytona Ferrie
Sydney Gelder
Addison Engelby
Leslie Hernandez
Gustavo Hernandes-Santos
Holden Hernandez
Cody Robb
Lyndon Johnson
Dameon Cook

Tatiana Kasner
Xavier Ramirez
Kaden Dean
Maya Villarreal

Arynn Luppes*
Brooklyn Doolittle
Kayley Zanker
Kyle Klaver
Aliya Erickson
Taryn Swanson
Laurel Johnson

*All Iowa 8th Grade Honor Band
^Alternate All Iowa 8th Grade 
   Honor Band

Program Notes

Fanfare for "Our Time": This invigorating fanfare seeks to convey the optimism and achievement associated with the 60th anniversary celebration of a new building campaign at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School in Atlanta, Georgia.   In celebrating the past and looking towards the future, the anniversary theme was “Our Time”.   As our students worktowards goals, they have realized it is their time now!
      From the Composer: I am a band director myself, and I am realizing now more than ever the importance of music that speaks to our kids and lifts their spirits after the events of the past two years. Thank you for all YOU do and for supporting new music.   Best wishes to you and your students, and congrats on your upcoming performance at Iowa Bandmasters!

Little Suite for Band: The “Little Suites” by Leroy Jackson are some of Standridge’s favorite pieces written for young bands.   Little Suite, Little Scotch Suite, and Little Irish Suite all change styles, meters, and keys.   When he wrote this piece, all three were out of print and inspired him to write.   Little Suite for Band is in four movements.   It begins with a light and flowing Ayre.   The second movement is a Gigue in a minor key.   This is followed by a lovely legato Ballad and it concludes with a lively pastoral March.

Where Words End... : Sometimes, music is not “about” anything.    Where Words End… embodies this notion and gives performers and listeners an opportunity to feel music in ways they may not have before. 

Serenade for a Picket Fence: Norman Leyden wrote a clever novelty piece that trades back and forth between full band and the featured mallet trio.   This fast-paced, whimsical piece will surely keep you at the edge of your seat!

Tripwire: A spy attempts to infiltrate the defenses of an arch enemy.   Take caution though, for every step can trigger an alarm because tripwires are everywhere!   This clever work is unlike anything out there and offers some extraordinary colors.   From the sneaky sound of the beginning melody to the loud and raucous rips that follow laterin the work, this is an incredible change of pace for any concert!

MadDash: Step back in time with this thrilling circus galop composed in the style of Karl L. King.   Experience an evening inside the Big Top, complete with capricious clowns, amazing aerialists, enormous elephants, and a superlative spectacle of downright death-defying feats.   Get ready.   You’re about to make a Mad Dash!

Byzantine Dances: Byzantine Dances is meant to portray a set of Turkish dances.   The opening dance is fast and energetic, written in the style of a Roma Gypsy dance.   The slower section in the middle of the piece is written in the style of a Zeybek dance.   This type of dance is often performed by a solo dancer symbolizing courage and heroism.   The dancer uses out-stretched arms, almost resembling a great hawk.   The Byzantine Empire, also known as the Eastern Roman Empire, lasted from 400-1493 AD and covered much of the area that is now Turkey.

     The South Hamilton Community School District’s vision is to prepare our children for the world in which they live.   One very important step in this preparation is through extra and co-curricular activities.   This is strongly supported by our administrative team: Superintendent Heather Holm, Secondary Principal Andy Eckert, Elementary Principal Steve Neuberger, and Activity Director Todd Coy.

     The South Hamilton Community School District has a consistent student enrollment of approximately 740 students from the communities of Randall, Stanhope, Ellsworth, and Jewell.   Almost one third of the student population (approximately 200 students) are involved in the 5-12 instrumental music department.   The department is led by Alexa Gibbs, who conducts the high school band as well as the 7th and 8th grade band.   Jasmine Mobley conducts the 5th grade band, 6th grade band, and teaches K-4 general music.

     Band students receive an individual or duo lesson once in a 6-day cycle.   Fifth grade band meets twice a week, and sixth grade band meets three times a week.   The seventh and eighth grade band rehearses approximately 40 minutes daily.   The middle school band has increased by 20 members in the last four years.   They perform three major concerts in November, March, and May.   The band also participates in the Adventureland Festival of Bands each year.   In addition to concerts, each student is required to play a solo at our inhouse solo festival held in February.   Students are involved in honor band opportunities including our very own Middles & Music Honor Band which was started this year.   Some of the middle school students also benefit from being involved with the high school jazz band program.

     The high school band program consists of marching band, concert band, pep band, and jazz band.   The concert band rehearses daily.   They perform four major concerts each year: Marching Concert in October, Concert Band in December, Parade of Bands in March, and Concert Band in May.   Band members are active in many IHSMA sponsored events.   The high school band consistently excels at Large Group Contest.   The high school band had over 50 Solo & Ensemble entries this year.   The South Hamilton Jazz Band was started from scratch seven years ago and rehearses twice a week before school.   Since then, the band has received five Division I ratings and performed at the Iowa Jazz Championships.   The high school band also takes advantage of a plethora of honor band opportunities throughout the school year.

The South Hamilton High School Band performed at the Iowa Bandmasters Association Conference in 2019.   The South Hamilton Middle School Band has performed at the Iowa Bandmasters Association Conference in 1974, 1979, 1992, 2018, and 2022.    Instrumental music is alive and well in the South Hamilton Community School District.

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