Standing on the stage of the Embassy Theatre, Jason Worzbyt engaged the audience.
“This is where it starts,” said Worzbyt with the flip of his conductor baton toward the student band behind him.
This is where, says Worzbyt, the love for music grows and future musicians are inspired, in opportunities like this. Worzbyt, a professor of bassoon and associate director of bands from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, was referring to the young musicians and teachers gathered for the Indiana Music Educators Association's state convention – a three-day event that ends today.
Worzbyt was conducting the Indiana Junior All-State Band in a Friday afternoon performance. He worked with the band in several sessions this week before showing off what they had learned in their performance at the Embassy. The junior band is made up of seventh- to ninth-graders from across Indiana.
More then 3,000 teachers and students are participating in the convention. Over 100 workshops, clinics and performances are being offered.
In the Grand Wayne Convention Center, Columbus North High School choir director Janie Gordon was videotaping three of her students before their performance.
The trio had been selected by audition tapes to participate in the 2011 Indiana All-State Vocal Jazz Ensemble.
The convention is so large events were taking place at several locations, including the Embassy Theatre, the Grand Wayne Convention Center, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne's Rinehart Music Center and student union, First Presbyterian Church and the Allen County Public Library.