Kenwood Musicians Excelling at Competitions with More to Come


Mr. Ladd and some of his musicians getting ready for their Springs concerts and competitions.

Samuel Thorton

Throughout the school year, Kenwood music students have the opportunity to participate in various competitions.

Kenwood’s band and orchestra teacher Mr. Ladd says there’s much benefit to students participating in music as an extracurricular during their time in school.  “Being in band or orchestra makes students smarter. Really! It has been shown that those who play an instrument show an increase not just in overall scores and test scores, but are better socialized, have a better understanding of teamwork and individual responsibility. I have had many students over the years that refer to band or orchestra as a family. You may not always get along, but each member is very important to the overall performance of the group, and you get respect for doing your part.”

A number of students participated in the District 7, BCPS, Solo/Ensemble Festival virtually as well as in person in February.

Achieving an Excellent rating was Maria Hernandez Rivera with an Alto Saxophone Solo.

Achieving a Superior rating, and being invited to “States” in May is the quartet of- Dominick Linares, clarinet; Godspower Ifeanyschukwu, baritone saxophone; Sapien Rosier, trombone; and Robert Roberts, euphonium.

A Superior Rating was also achieved by a Trio of Jefferson Alfaro Romero, percussion; Samuel Marino, Percussion; and Nicholas Smith, Trombone . A Superior rating means that these students will move on to the STATE of MD Solo/Ensemble Festival or “States” in May.

The accolades continue for KHS musicians.  Several KHS students have been selected to participate in the Baltimore County All-County Band and Orchestra. Performance will be in the early Spring. Named to All-county Band was Nicholas Smith, Trombone, 10th grade; All-County Orchestra- Amaya Freeman, Viola, 11th grade; Okwuchi Michelle Nwabueze, Cello, 12th grade; Genesis Bonilla, Cello, 12th grade; and Myka Jona Abuel, String Bass, 10th grade.

“All of these students have been working hard and are great representatives of Kenwood High School,” shared Mr. Ladd.

Back in the Fall several students also participated in the Statewide Maryland Music Educators Association Fall 2022 All Access Virtual Solo & Ensemble Festival. Those receiving recognition at that time were two soloist Michelle Nwabueze, cello, with an excellent rating and Kelechi Nwabueze, cello, with a good rating. Multiple duets were also recognized: Cameron Seaman, grade 9, and Maria Hernandez Rivera, grade 10, received a superior rating on the alto saxophone. Due Brianna Nelson, grade 9, and Arturo Hernandez Rivera, grade 12 received an excellent on the violin. Myka Abuel, grade 10, and Michelle Nwabueze, grade 12, received an excellent on the string bass and cello. Solen Manzari, grade 9, and Charles McDonaldson, grade 9, also received excellent ratings on their duet. The final duet of Destiny Imo and Kaden Leight, both grade 9, also received Good ratings on the cello and string bass. 


You can catch these amazing musicians performing in their Spring concert in May.