M-E Fifth Grade Band Wins Gold with Distinction at NYSSMA

Mia Perfetti

Peter Perfetti, the director of the Maine-Endwell fifth grade band, led the group to win the highest award at NYSSMA, a New York music competition. When? 

The band, which usually plays a level one, the easiest on a scale of six levels, actually ended up playing a level two instead. Even though they were playing much more difficult music than usual, they still ended up winning a Gold with Distinction, the highest award, followed by gold, silver, and bronze. 

When asked how he managed this achievement, Perfetti said “The kids were unbelievable. In rehearsal, I would be on the podium and I would see all the kids giving me their undivided attention. They paid attention so much, it was actually scary to me.” While a level two on a six-level scale doesn’t seem very difficult, it is important to remember that these are beginner musicians who have only just started playing, so to not have to start at the bottom is a tremendous achievement, especially winning a Gold with Distinction, which very few groups win. 

When asked to demonstrate how amazing it said, Perfetti said “One of the judges came out, and wanted to know where we were from, and told us how amazing the performance was. He was a famous, well-known band teacher from a very big school. In his school, he had three teachers in his band. I said to him, ‘I’m the only band teacher in the school, so I teach everything.’ He was so impressed that we could perform to that high of a caliber being from a smaller school with only one band teacher.” Congratulations to Peter Perfetti and the Maine-Endwell fifth grade band!