The student news site of St. Louis Park High School

The Echo

The student news site of St. Louis Park High School

The Echo

The student news site of St. Louis Park High School

The Echo

Band brings in big bucks

Park band earns a $1000 grant
Louisa Augustine
Sophomore Alex Liska practices the trumpet March 8. The band received a grant from GTCYS.

Park’s band program has been rewarded with a $1000 music grant. This grant was from GTCYS (Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphony). GTCYS aims to bring music to people around the city and inspire youth musicians. The band program has many areas in which this grant can be utilized. There is also a vast array of thoughts and opinions on this grant.

According to senior Nolen Heinrichs, the band room is a perfect place to use this grant because of the room’s lack of design and professionalism.

“Overall, improving the conditions of our room right now because, for those who don’t know, it’s just a barren print shop that we have a little bit of sound paneling in,” said Heinrichs.

Sophomore Minh Ochoa said the best way to spend the money for Park’s band is to repair equipment.

“Fixing equipment would probably be the highest priority. When you have a bunch of old equipment, it eventually starts to sound kind of bad. It’d be nice to fix some of that stuff,” said Ochoa.

Band teacher Annaliese Heim said the band program is planning to compose new music and fix instruments.

“We were really lucky to get this grant, and I’m really excited about it, and mostly what we’re gonna do with the money is buy some new music,” said Heim. “Also, we have some extra money to kind of set aside for repairs for instruments.”

According to Ochoa, he has experience with seeing broken reeds and believes that is what the band needs to supply.

“Having maybe a couple of spare reeds for those who can’t buy reeds. My friend breaks the reeds kind of often because they play the saxophone,” said Ochoa

According to Heim despite the changes happening this year, the grant will affect the students head-on.

“This year we have a lot of different things that they’re having to adjust to. And so I think that knowing that we have this extra money, that’s going to things that directly impact them.”

Heinrichs said having a more comprehensive range of songs will make the concerts new and improved.

“Improving our selection of music as well,” said Heinrichs. “We can get some cooler pieces, and I think the ones we have going up for this concert are gonna be great because of the grant,” said Heinrichs

According to Heim, the band program’s music needs to be updated, and the grant could help the band purchase new music.

“A lot of the music that we have in our music library—we have a ton of it—is really old, like from the 1970s,” said Heim. In order to keep band repertoire a little bit more fresh, it’s helpful to buy music that was composed, you know, a little bit more recently.”

According to Heinrichs, the grant could help assist and aid newcomers as the band program grows.

“Ever since COVID, we’ve been sort of regrouping, and once the wave of middle schoolers hits and then we actually get a bigger band, having this grant and this money will really help us to accommodate for these new people in band,” said Heinrichs.

According to Heim, although the grant isn’t close to covering everything the band program needs, it still helps them out.

“It’s not a million dollars or anything. You know, it’s just $1,000, and believe me, it’ll go quick. But I think it’s just a small win for the program,” said Heim. “And in a year where we have a lot of crazy things going on and a lot of adjustments to be made.”

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Leo Justesen
Leo Justesen, Echo Staffer
Hi everyone! My name is Leo and I can't believe I am a senior and this is my last year at echo! Anyways I'm a big guy with a bigger heart. I love chillin’ with television, there's also a chance you’ll catch me at the archery range shooting bullseyes. And creativity is one of my best abilities. I'm gonna make the most of my last year here and it's gonna be a fun ride!
Louisa Augustine
Louisa Augustine, Echo Staffer
Hi! My name is Louisa and this is my first year on Echo. I’m a junior this year and some things I enjoy are running cross country and track, downhill skiing/racing, and hanging out with friends and family. I’m excited to be a part of Echo and am looking forward to this year!

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