The Hightower Trail Middle School orchestra program has long lived up to its motto “Excellence is the New Normal.” The orchestra program currently has over 300 students enrolled in grades 6-8. Noteworthy accomplishments for the HTMS Orchestra program include GMEA Music program of the year (2019), including being selected to perform at the 2019 GMEA In-Service conference. The Chamber, 7th and 8th grade orchestras consistently earn superior ratings for their performances at the GMEA District 12 Large Group Performance Evaluations and Solo & Ensemble Evaluations. Orchestra members consistently earn positions in the District Honor Orchestras and All-State Orchestras.
The 6th Grade Orchestra students participate in “Jamboree”, a combined schools concert held each spring. Each grade level orchestra presents between three and five concerts per year. The 8th Grade Orchestra participates annually in a trip to Tennessee in which it performs for an elementary or middle school to promote the integration of orchestra in schools.
In addition to each grade level orchestra, students are encouraged to audition for the HTMS Chamber Orchestra. Chamber Orchestra meet weekly before school and performs at events for the school and community. They were selected last year to perform at the 2018 ASTA National Orchestra Festival in Atlanta, Ga. Past performances include appearances at the Governor’s Mansion and the State Capitol.
Classes rehearse for 42 minutes daily. Extracurricular opportunities include our Night of the Arts ensembles: Chamber Orchestra, Wire Choir, Cello Choir, and Viola Choir. Directors are available for help sessions in the mornings (8-9 am) and afternoons (until 5 pm). Students can use this time to pass-off assignments, prepare for auditions and evaluations, and to satisfy their weekly practice requirements.