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ABOUT PATRICK MARSH BANDS:
Two identical middle schools opened in 1997 – Patrick Marsh Middle and Prairie View Middle. Both middle schools currently have an enrollment of around 525 students grades 6-7 at each building. Patrick Marsh is located 6 miles North of Madison on Highway 151 and Prairie View is located on Highway 19 on the west side of Sun Prairie.
Currently Patrick Marsh and Prairie View have over 200 students participating in band at each school. All beginning band students start in the 6th grade and have full band every other day a weekly lesson. The 7th grade band students have band every day plus a weekly lesson.
Both middle schools offer two or three jazz ensembles for students in grades 6-7 to participate in. The middle schools in Sun Prairie combine for a middle school jazz festival that takes place each February. Past soloist/clinicians for the middle school festival have included Lennie Foy, Doug Stone, Ron Carter, Phil Ostrander and Josh Paris. The middle schools in Sun Prairie also host a citywide honor band every November. Conductors have included Patty Schlafer, Matt Gregg, Marti Fults, Tim Gleason, Steve Bina, Lizabeth Rosenthal, Melody Snyder and John Rash.
Both middle school band programs have received numerous individual and group honors. As a group, the bands have performed at the 2006 UW-Milwaukee Concert Band Festival, Milwaukee Art Museum, Wisconsin State Capitol Rotunda, the "New Wisconsin Promise Conference", 2006 and 2009 Wisconsin State Music Conference. The bands have worked with clinicians such as Brian Balmages, Richard Saucedo, Dr. Charles Young, Lennie Foy, Dr. Glenn Hayes, Dr. John Climer, Dennis Glocke, Michael Sweeney, Erik Morales and Samuel R. Hazo. The individual student achievements include the WSMA Middle Level Honors Orchestra and Band, WI-NBA All-State Band, Tri-State Honors Band, UW-Milwaukee Honors Band, and WSMA State District and State Solo/Ensemble Performances.
The Patrick Marsh ComMission Possible project has yielded a number of new works for middle school band:
ComMission Possible 1: Blue and Green Music (2009) - Samuel R. Hazo
ComMission Possible 2: Sun Cycles (2012) - Brian Balmages
ComMission Possible 3: Particles (2013) - Michael Sweeney
ComMission Possible 4: One Giant Leap (2014) - Erik Morales
ComMission Possible 5: Lightning Field (2015) - John Mackey
ComMission Possible 6: Rock Music (2016) - Alex Shapiro
ComMission Possible 7: Twittering Machine (2017) - Brian Balmages
ComMission Possible 8: TBD (2018) - Andrew Boysen Jr. & Erik Evensen