Wisconsin Student Musicians Head to UW-Parkside for WSMA State Music Festivals

Published: April 23, 2024

WSMAWAUNAKEE, Wis. (April 23, 2024) – Thousands of dedicated middle and high school student musicians from across the state are preparing for the Wisconsin School Music Association (WSMA) State Solo & Ensemble Festivals. UW-Parkside will host this event on Saturday, April 27 from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. It will be open to the public and free of charge. 

"The WSMA State Music Festival is an enriching experience for all participants, both performers and their supporters,” said Donna Hewitt, Festival Manager for UW-Parkside. “It is also an opportunity for our music program to showcase our facilities and emphasize how much we value and support the efforts of our school music colleagues, their students and their families.” 

Students must earn a “starred first” rating in Class A (which consists of the most difficult music) at a WSMA District Music Festival to qualify for WSMA State Music Festivals. The participants, in grades 6-12, can choose from a variety of instrumental and vocal solo and ensemble categories for their performances in district festivals throughout the state. Over the past six months, WSMA has held over 140 such events, involving more participants than any other student activity.

“WSMA State Solo & Ensemble Festivals provide youth musicians a state-level platform to showcase their growth and achievements. This opportunity is possible because of our state’s exceptional music educators, adjudicators, families and communities who support access to a well-rounded education inclusive of music,” said WSMA Executive Director Laurie Fellenz.

Nine other university campuses will host performances by more than 11,000 students, making this event one of the largest of its kind in the nation. UW-Milwaukee, UW-Oshkosh, UW-Platteville and UW-Whitewater will hold festivals on April 27 also. Carroll University, UW-Eau Claire, UW-Green Bay, UW-La Crosse and UW-Stevens Point festivals will be held on May 4. 

Learn more about WSMA State Music Festivals and other programs by visiting wsmamusic.org. Festival information, including schedules and results, will be posted as available.

Founded in 1932, Wisconsin School Music Association (WSMA) is a non-profit service organization with more than 1,000 member public and private schools. Students from member schools are eligible to participate in WSMA programs, such as District and State Music Festivals, Concert Festivals, State Honors Music Project, State Marching Band Championships, Student Composition Project and WSMA Aca U. WSMA is governed by a board of directors made up of superintendents, principals and other officers from all over the state. WSMA believes music is a basic human need and that all children have the right to experience all that music offers them.

Media Contact:
Kevin Thays
(608) 850-3566

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