Brunnhuber, Thaler accepted into Honors Ensemble


Side by side, Alex Thaler and Seth Brunnhuber are shown at the PMEA last year. This will be their final year participating in the NafME/PMEA All-East Honors Ensemble.

Jaidyn Palladini, Guest Writer

In May 2020, Seth Brunnhuber and Alex Thaler virtually auditioned for the NafME/PMEA All-East Honors Ensemble. Audition clips were submitted to All-East and All-State coordinators to choose who to accept.

As for Brunnhuber and Thaler, they continued to practice and keep up so that when the day would come, they would know that all the hard work paid off for this moment.

“I practiced for an hour a day for the month leading up to the audition submission deadline. The week before, I was practicing roughly two hours a day. The week of the deadline, I recorded five videos a day of me trying to get a perfect audition,” Thaler said.

He waited several months to find out if he was accepted. Results were then sent out in January of the 2020-2021 school year. 

“I was thrilled! I felt that all of my hard work paid off. I am super excited to work with what the conductors have planned. I think the festival will be awesome, even in the virtual setting!” Thaler said. 

Along with being a part of PMEA since his sophomore year, it has taken his skills to the next level.

“Having spent all of high school heavily involved in music, I felt that I wanted to audition and see how far my skills on my instrument could take me.  I have done PMEA since 10th grade, and All-East is the festival that every PMEA musician hopes to have the chance to be a part of, so I knew that auditioning was an absolute must whenever I was accepted into all-state,” Thaler said. 

Orchestra director Kelly Detwiler was filled with excitement when he got accepted. 

“I was absolutely thrilled. I contacted him right away! I also think it will boost his confidence. He is such a good player. I am so proud of him,” orchestra director Kelly Detwiler said. 

Senior Seth Brunnhuber was also accepted. 

I am super happy to have made it, and getting to represent my school and it’s music program at such a large scale is something that I am quite proud of,” Brunnhuber said.

The audition was a long process and with the time to practice, everyone had a better chance to get accepted even though many were denied. 

The audition was pretty straightforward, I had to play three different excerpts on three different percussion instruments.  My playing had to be perfect to even be considered for any of the All-East ensambles,” Brunnhuber said. 

As for last minute preparation, Brunnhuber spent hours each day to be perfect for the audition.

“I spent about half an hour each day practicing the material over the span of three weeks,” Brunnhuber said. 

Band director Larry Detwiler was thrilled to hear Brunnhuber got accepted.

“This is very exciting for both students. Seth has worked very hard through the past two and a half years and it is great to see him recognized and rewarded for his hard work and dedication. He is truly an example for all of the other band and jazz band students. I don’t think it necessarily boosts Seth’s confidence, as he is already a great player but it does reinforce that all of the hard work, practice and dedication pay off in the end with special honors such as this,” band director Larry Detwiler said.