The Mansfield ISD Orchestra Program made its debut four years ago with a phased in approach.
It started as an introduction to string instruments for fifth-graders in 2016. Now, those students who stayed in the program are freshman in high school.
“I think it’s just exciting to be part of something that’s new, and we’re the first group to experience it,” said Eliana Nguyen, freshman at Legacy High School.
Nguyen is one of seven MISD string students to be selected for one of the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) high school all-region orchestras. Dr. Russ Sanders, director of fine arts, said it is a pretty big accomplishment to achieve that in the program’s first year of high school eligibility.
“We’re proud of these students for working hard and achieving such an honor,” he said. “This is the first step, and we’re working toward the all-state level next.”
Dr. Sanders added that the district’s orchestra program gives students an opportunity to pursue their love of music while developing a number of skills that extend far beyond the rehearsal room. Nguyen agrees.
“It helps you to listen more and to be more aware,” the 15-year-old said. “You just get to communicate all the different emotions when you play a piece.”
The MISD Orchestra Program will continue to expand every year until it is available to students in grades 5-12. Nguyen said joining the string orchestra program and sticking to it is a decision she doesn’t regret.
“It’s just amazing to see how much we have improved,” said Nguyen. “If you think about where we used to be and compare it to now, it just makes it all worth it.”
For more information about the MISD Orchestra Program, visit the MISD Fine Arts web page.