Two CHS juniors earn All-District Band honors

By: Griffin Anderson, Contributing Writer

Terra Veazey and Nealia Toedebusch, juniors at Centralia High School, received Northeast Missouri All-District Band honors earlier this school year. 

Mrs. Kim Neighbors, currently in her fourth year as the band director for the Centralia R-VI School District, said many hours of practice and preparation go into making the All-District Band. 

“Preparing for All-District Band takes a lot of practice, hard work and patience.  Every fall, we are given the audition music, which is a packet full of challenging scales and etudes. For the students who are interested in auditioning, we schedule weekly lessons to help them prepare,” said Neighbors. 

Veazey plays the clarinet and Toedebusch plays the tuba. 

“Both of these musicians excel, because they work hard.  They practice, they set goals for themselves and they never stop trying!” said Neighbors. 

Veazey was excited to have been selected for the band.She appreciates the opportunity to be a part of the honors band, despite not being able to have an in-person ensemble. 

“It’s great to know that all hard work pays off. Even though we are not able to physically play an ensemble together, it’s still nice to have the opportunity to go out and do great things,” said Veazey. 

Toedebusch said she was surprised that she made the All-District Band, considering she has only been playing the tuba for two years. 

“I feel very shocked that I made All-District Band because this is only my second year playing the tuba. After the first day of shock though, I felt very proud of myself because I worked really hard on all of the scales and snippets of music,” said Toedebusch. 

Both Veazey and Toedebusch echoed Neighbors’ statement about the many hours of preparation that go into making the honors band. 

“I practiced for weeks during quarantine and through the summer to work up the scales and etudes. I maintained a rigorous practice schedule, practicing for hours every day,” said Veazey. 

Toedebusch also noted having an additional class period allowed her for extra practice time.

“Every day in private music I worked on either memorizing the scales, or I worked on the snippets of music to where I could cleanly play all of them for the audition,” she said.

There were no live auditions due to COVID-19 restrictions this year. Each audition was a pre-recorded video that was submitted to the judges.

Because Veazey and Toedebusch received All-District honors, they are now eligible to audition for All-State Band.

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