Tuesday, July 27, 2021


County music festival unites performers 


Inside Maxwell High School’s gymnasium on March 14, student musicians from across Colusa County came together in one concert.

The Colusa County Music Festival is a tradition that reflects the collaboration of teachers, students, and parents from Colusa, Williams, Arbuckle, and Maxwell.

“The kids worked well together and we created nice full and balanced bands,” said organizer Vicki Wilson, the Maxwell music teacher. “It was wonderful for students from around the county to collaborate together and create such a rich concert.”

The festival included a combined choir, which performed “Shoshone Love Song” and “I know I’m not the only one,” directed by Pierce High School music teacher Adam Ferris.

“The choir was small, but the harmonies were full and the sound was dynamic,” Wilson said.

The Junior High Band performed four songs: “Construction Zone,” which Wilson directed; “Pokemon Theme,” directed by Ron Rector, Johnson Junior High music teacher; “Windsong,” directed by Eric Roberts, Williams music teacher; and “Egyptique,” directed by Mary Colligan, Colusa music teacher.

Each director distributed the music to their students and worked with them on their pieces leading up to the Music Festival. The students, without rehearsal, came together and performed as a cohesive group for the festival.

“We did not play together before today,” said Karsyn Gwinnup, a seventh grade drummer at Maxwell Middle School. “Maxwell’s teacher, Mrs. Wilson, taught us our parts, just like the Colusa teacher taught her students and the teachers from the other schools taught their students. Then we all get together for the concert.”

Wilson said the music directors from all of the schools do get together for the planning of the countywide music program.

“I really enjoy spending a few days with my music colleagues from neighboring schools. It gives us a chance to discuss similar challenges, approaches, and be supported by other music teachers.”

The combined high school band wrapped up the Colusa County Music Festival with four performances, “Blue Ridge Saga,” and “The Magic of Harry Potter,” directed by Colligan, “Instant Concert,” directed by Wilson, and “Ancient Echoes,” directed by Roberts.

The festival was well attended by Colusa County parents, friends, and community members.

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