High notes: Students across Cullman County make All-State, All-District bands

Cullman High School student musicians who made All-District III Honor Band are (front row, left to right) Jordan Nash, Sara Reeves, Yukiino Shichinohe and Sam Adkins and (back row, left to right) Logan Walker and Elijah Putman. (Photo courtesy of Kirin Tisdale)

Updated 2-6-21 at 2:30 p.m.

CULLMAN, Ala. – Area band students were recently selected for the 2021 Alabama Bandmasters Association (ABA) All-State and All-District Honor Bands. Cullman County is located in ABA District III, and students typically travel to a location within the district to audition for a panel of judges. This year those auditions were done virtually.

Cullman High School Director of Bands Christopher Smith explained, “Due to COVID, this year’s All-State auditions were different than in the past. Students submitted videos of the tryouts to the District through an audition app. The judges evaluated all of the auditions throughout Alabama and selected the highest scoring students for all the All-State and District Honor Bands.”

Smith said the audition process consisted of scales and very challenging music selections.

Landing a coveted spot in one of the three All-State High School Bands (Red, White or Blue) or the one All-State Middle School Band is incredibly difficult as students are competing against hundreds of other students across the eight ABA districts. Those chosen for the All-State bands automatically qualify for All-District Honor Band.

“Being selected for All-State is one of the highest honors a high school band student can receive from the Alabama Bandmasters Association,” said Smith.

This year’s All-State Band Festival is tentatively scheduled to take place in Mobile in April.

Below are the student musicians from across Cullman County who were selected for the 2021 All-State and All-District Honor Bands:



  • Sara Reeves- Red Band, Flute
  • Jordan Nash – Red Band, Clarinet
  • Yukiino Shichinohe- Red Band, Alto Saxophone
  • Elijah Putman- Alternate, Baritone Saxophone
  • Sam Adkin- Blue Band, Baritone


  • Ivan Conway- Alternate, Tenor Saxophone
  • Jonathan Rodriguez- Trumpet (Middle School)


  • Victoria Frith – Blue Band, Flute
  • Madeline Murrah- White Band, Clarinet
  • Sabrina Gaines- Unassigned, Bass Clarinet
  • Suzie Feist- Alternate, Trumpet
  • Ally Parris- White Band, Trombone

Seed-Harvest Music Academy

  • Mathew Burgett- Blue Band, Trumpet

West Point

  • Kellen Drinkard- Unassigned, Bassoon
  • Kira Kuznyetsova- Clarinet (Middle School)




  • Sara Reeves- Flute
  • Jordan Nash- Clarinet
  • Logan Walker- Clarinet
  • Yukiino Shichinohe- Alto Saxophone
  • Elijah Putman- Baritone Saxophone
  • Sam Adkins- Baritone

Good Hope

  • Kai Schofield- Alto Saxophone (Middle School)
  • Samuel Cregan- Tuba
  • Elijah Goodridge- Percussion


  • Ivan Conway- Tenor Saxophone
  • Jonathan Rodriguez- Trumpet (Middle School)


  • Victoria Frith- Flute
  • Madeline Murrah- Clarinet
  • Sabrina Gaines- Bass Clarinet (Middle School)
  • Vallyn Frith- Trumpet
  • Suzie Feist- Trumpet
  • Ally Parris- Trombone
  • Heather Berglund- Tuba
  • Ryan Griffis- Percussion

Seed-Harvest Music Academy

  • Mathew Burgett- Trumpet
  • Cassie Pennington- Clarinet
  • Benjamin Weber- Trombone

West Point

  • Kellen Drinkard- Bassoon
  • Kira Kuznyetsova- Clarinet (Middle School)


Other musicians honored

All-State Jazz Band auditions and All-State Orchestra auditions (operated by the Alabama Orchestra Association) happened back in the fall. Those festivals were canceled due to COVID-19, but not before two Cullman High School students auditioned and earned spots.

Jacob Dye earned a spot in the All-State Jazz Band on drum set, while Sara Reeves made All-State Orchestra on flute/piccolo.

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