Crusaders send 20 to All-State Music Festival

Eighteen vocalists, two band students qualify for All-State Music Festival
Posted on 11/15/2023

Bishop Heelan senior Cahill Kirkpatrick thought playing the bass trombone would be a good challenge for himself, even on one of the biggest audition stages for Iowa high school fine arts students. 

Kirkpatrick first picked up the trombone in May, and he was accepted to play at the Iowa High School Music Association on Thursday through Saturday in Ames, Iowa. 

There will also be 18 vocal students representing the Crusaders this week at Iowa State University. 

Kirkpatrick played a variation rendition of “Barnacle Bill the Sailor,” which has a wide range of notes. He nailed his audition, and will be the only bass trombone player in the statewide band. Kirkpatrick is making his second appearance at All-State. 

Heelan junior Matthew Lin will join Kirkpatrick in the orchestra and he will play clarinet. It’s the third time Lin has qualified for All-State. 

“It’s such a high honor, and it’s nice to see ‘Bishop Heelan’ behind their name, because it really does speak highly of our program,” said Jeana Larson, Bishop Heelan’s band director. “All of our kids put in a whole lot of work.”
This calendar year has been a memorable one for the band program. The concert band received a “1” rating this spring at the Large Group Contest for the first time in a few years. On top of that, the marching band is getting ready to perform at the Dec. 30 Peach Bowl in Atlanta. 

“It really takes all of the effort that all of the kids have put in,” Larson said. “My philosophy has always been to take students from where they are to where they want to be, one step at a time.” 

There were six Bishop Heelan band students who auditioned for the All-State Festival. 

While Delaney Andreasen isn’t a four-time qualifier, the Bishop Heelan senior knows what an audition is like. She still breathes a sigh of relief when she nails her performance. And, she’ll be returning to All-State for the third time.

“You work so hard and knowing that you did a good job and see your director (Gage Fenton) smile at you, that means a lot,” Andreasen said. “You might not like the time commitment, but it pays off. When you’re with 600 other kids, they’re all there for the same reason.”

Andreasen has been chosen as a semi-finalist for a solo audition at the All-State Music Festival. 

This honor is only given to six out of the 125 All-State alto singers. Delaney will audition again on Thursday to try and be the one alto soloist selected to sing the solo for Mozart's “Regina Coeli.”

Andreasen is one of four Bishop Heelan altos singing this week alongside Mary Pepin, Kiki Tott and Lily Friis. 

Here are the other qualifiers, sorted by section:
Sopranos: Abby Demers, Lexi Mathis, Emma Bertrand, and Tess Maly.

Tenors: Henry Osborn, Scott Williams, Jacob Welch, and Teagan Reiners.

Basses: Jacob Malenosky, Isaac Elbert, Conan Kirkpatrick, Kasey Keane, Kaden Carda, and Solomon Walker

The 18 qualifiers broke a school record, and is the most of any Northwest Iowa school. In the past two school years, the Crusaders sent 12 both times. 

“Eighteen is a lot more than I’m used to, but it’s really exciting for the people who haven’t gotten to go,” Andreasen said. “It’s the best experience. All-State is what made me decide that I want to go into music. Having all these new people is very exciting.” 

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2023 SchoolMessenger Corporation. All rights reserved.