Eastside Students Perform in All State Band

Eastside High School Students Perform in 2020 Georgia All-State Band
Posted on 06/23/2020
Joseph Bickel and Duncan JourdanEastside High School students Duncan Jourdan and Joseph Bickel were recently selected via statewide audition process to perform in the prestigious 2020 Georgia All-State Band. This marked the third time Duncan was selected for All-State Band; Bickel has been selected five years dating back to his middle school days. Both students recently graduated from high school and plan to continue their music studies at the collegiate level. They said their time in the All-State Band over the years afforded them with valuable experience to make their leap to college successful.

“It really is a good experience,” said Jourdan who plays the clarinet. “Not everybody in the normal high school setting is going to work as hard as all of the students at All-State because the ones at All-State are already the most hardworking and most talented so you get to be with the people who work just as hard as you do. They have a passion so it’s an experience to get to be around likeminded people.”

“Everyone there is supporting each other,” added Bickel, who plays the euphonium. “You’re basically seeing who your future leaders are in band. All of them are at the top of their school and they are just phenomenal players and many of them are going to major in music when they go to college.”

And that’s just what both Jourdan and Bickel have planned as well. Jourdan will major in music education at the University of Georgia while Bickel plans to study euphonium performance at the University of Michigan. Ultimately, both Jourdan and Bickel hope to make music their career.

Jourdan said he plans to work his way up the ladder from middle school to high school as a band director before settling in on a career teaching in college. Bickel on the other hand wants to focus on performing.

“I am going for a military band job,” said Bickel. “My ultimate goal in life is to play in the President’s own Marine band.”

While each has plans to study and work in the music fields, they both stated they don’t look at music as a job. In fact, it’s just the opposite.

“I find playing music as my stress relief,” said Jourdan. “Once you get in the music you kind of forget there’s other things going on, so it’s a kind of stress reliever. It’s hard and it’s its own stress but it’s a focused concentrated amount of work as opposed to being worried about what is going on.”

Bickel added, “I also see it as a big stress relief. Playing music allows you to block everything out that’s happening around you. Like, you don’t have to think about Coronavirus when you have an instrument to your face. It’s also just fun to do. I play a very obscure instrument so it’s kind of fun to explain what it is. It’s fun to see a crowd’s reaction when they’ve never seen or heard that instrument before. It’s just really cool.”

“Duncan and Joseph are tremendously talented musicians,” said Alan Fowler, Eastside High School band director. “They were a joy to have in class and I have great expectations for them as they leave high school and continue to pursue their music studies. I have no doubt they will continue to excel at the collegiate level and I look forward to seeing where their passion and talent leads them.”