It was a good day for Pratt and Skyline music programs at State Large Group competition in Pratt with lots of "I" ratings.

It was a good day for Pratt and Skyline at the State Music Festival for large groups on April 19. Bands performed on the stage at Liberty Middle School and choirs performed at the First Southern Baptist Church. There were 27 schools from 1A, 2A, 3A and 4A division at the event.

The PHS Chamber Singers, Robed Choir and Ladies Ensemble all scored "I" ratings from all three judges. The Chamber Singers and the Ladies Ensemble both received a perfect score from one judge. The PHS vocal groups are directed by Brandon Wade. The Ladies Ensemble number "Prayer of the Children" was an especially emotional one for Wade. He chose it in memory of his mother who recently passed away. After the ladies ensemble concluded their performance, they gathered in the foyer and had a group hug with Wade. Everyone was crying and it was a special time for the group.

"What a truly blessed day today was. Extremely emotional and filled with the greatest moments I have every has as an educator," Wade said. "Today my students gave the gift of music to everyone who was in earshot. They didn't sing for the "rating" at contest but sang to bless those around them, it was pure magic."

The PHS band also scored three "I" ratings for their hard work. New band director Jeff Poort leads the Pride of South Central Kansas Band.

"What a day. A good day. I'm so proud of my students of the PHS band for all their hard work and dedication," Poort said.

The Skyline Band, under the direction of Bob Lee, received three "I" ratings for their performance. Very few "I" ratings were given in the band competition. Lee said he was very proud of his students and their hard work.

The Skyline choir received one "I" rating and two "II" ratings.

Lee, who directs band and choir, said he was lucky to have a group of students that allow him to push them past their limits to do what they don't think they can do.

"I thought both groups performed well. I was exceptionally proud of the kids," Lee said.

@GaleR_Tribune