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Arts alive in S'side

I just want to say what an amazing performance Valley youth put on at the Yakima Valley Music Educators Association Small School Music Festival last week at Sunnyside High School. The hundreds of choir and band members from 12 schools kept a capacity crowd captivated with their amazing performances.

It was amazing to see how hundreds of youngsters, many who don't know each other, could come together and perform like they did. Russ Newbury, fine arts facilitator for the Pasco School District, did an unbelievable job with the combined band. Retired Kamiakin High School Music Director David Wright was equally impressive.

One highlight for me as a parent was that the students at Sierra Vista Middle School were able to take part in the performance. This was an opportunity for my middle school son to experience something very unique and grow from it. He will be a better musician for this experience.

I would like to commend the Sunnyside School District for its dedication to keeping the arts alive. There is a high importance on allowing students room to grow and prosper in areas such as band, choir, art and theatre. It is nice to see there are still some important subjects in school that don't involve solely passing the WASL.

Last week's concert was a moving, incredible performance that showcased the amazing talents of Valley youth.

/s/ Michael Kantman, Sunnyside

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