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Cousins Middle School band students earn state recognition
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Several members of the Cousins Middle School Band recently earned state recognition during their Honor Band and All State Band auditions.


According to Cousins band director, Christine Kraemer, 12 students were selected to participate in the Georgia Music Educators Association District IV Honor Band last month. Only 100 of the 350 students from Newton, Rockdale, DeKalb, Butts and Morgan counties who auditioned were selected to participate in the District Honor Band.


Cousins Middle School Honor Band members included: Amanda Manowski and Marissa Trammell on flute; Kimberly Stier, Taylor Heilesen, Caitlin Strawn, Destiny Sessums and Riley Dameron on clarinet; Bryant Johnson and Isaiah Bostic on alto saxophone; Amy Danecki on tenor saxophone and Abraham Bogale and Chuma Atunzu on tuba.


As a result of their distinct auditions, four Cousins band members earned scores high enough to allow them to audition for Georgia Music Educators Association All State Band, which is comprised of band students from across the entire state of Georgia. The four students who travelled to Perry Middle School to represent the Cousins Middle School Band at All State auditions were: Amanda Manowski, Amy Danecki, Chuma Atunzu and Abraham Bogale.


“This is a very prestigious honor,” said Kraemer. “Just to be recommended to audition for the state’s highest honor band shows that these students have studied, practiced for many hours and worked diligently to be able to perform their instrument with high proficiency.”


As a result of these auditions, Bogale, a seventh grade tuba player, represented Cousins Middle and the Newton County School System in the Georgia All State Band in Savannah March 5-7. According to Kraemer, Bogale is the second band student from Cousins to earn a place in the All State Band over the past three years.


“These students have proved that as a result of dedication and focused hard work, they achieve success in their academic endeavors as well as receive recognition from their teachers and peers,” said Cousins Middle School Principal Scott Sauls. “The students presently participating in the Cousins Advanced Band are also leaders in their school with their academic grades and CRCT scores.”