Tuesday night Mitchell has his end of year concert for his bands in Behrens Auditorium on Hardin-Simmons campus. The Beginning, Concert and symphonic bands performed pieces they had been working on, including music from contest. This concert was a salute to our men and women in the armed forces, with the Star Spangled Banner opening the concert.
Our sweet, sweet friends the Jennings (Ben, Katie & Hunter) and the Toogoods (Amanda, Brian & Brynlee) came to the concert to hear and support Mitchell's bands. It was so sweet of them to come out. Ben even brought his little brother from Big Brother's Big Sisters. His little is going to Clack next year and wants to be in the band!
I love the end of year concerts more than any other. It really shows how much these students have learned in one short school year. And as Mitchell put it for the beginners they went from not even knowing how to open their instrument cases to playing and performing a 3 piece concert.
In between each band Mitchell talked a little about that band, the music they were playing and his usual comedic banter. Such as, "Please pray for me when we go to Six Flags next week," or "Yes, your kids drive me nuts but I am so proud of them." The Symphonic (top) band was the last to perform their music. As he was talking before they performed he said that next concert, there will be a little Etter in the back row. I knew he was going to make this announcement, but didn't expect it. Everyone started cheering, clapping and his students were so excited! I started crying while holding my niece Mollie Grace. Maggie thought something was wrong!
These students love and care for Mitchell so much and it is evident in their playing and his relationship with them. The last song of the concert was Salute to the Armed Forces. This was not special because of the times we are suffering through right now, or that half of the audience was in the Airforce but becuase of the love and dedication everyone has for our country. And what those men and women give up for you and me. Everyone stood cheering the entire time. Saluting our Country. It was one of the most amazing expereinces I have ever sat through. I am so proud of Mitchell and what he does everyday!