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HUSD students receive national recognition
Posted 1/14/19



students post with their instruments


The Mt. Eden High School instrumental music program recently had two students accepted into the 2019 National Honor Band of America and the National Honor Orchestra of America, respectively. The honor ensembles provide an opportunity for distinguished musicians to perform on a national stage. The Bay Area students will perform at the Music For All National Musical Festival scheduled to take place in Indianapolis, IN on March 14-16, 2019.


Barry Galbreath Flores, a sophomore at Mt. Eden High School in Hayward, was accepted to the National Honor Band of America. This honor solidifies his place as the top baritone saxophone player in the country. He began playing music four years ago and expected his interest in music to be short-lived. After an unsuccessful audition for National Ensemble as a freshman, Flores decided to challenge himself by putting in more hours of practice after school.


“Out of all the talented students who audition for this position around the the United States, I was the only one chosen,” said Flores. “I am very proud to make it this far at this place in my music career.” He has set up a fundraising page to help raise the funds needed to make the trip to Indianapolis.


Edwin Ramos, a violinist and also a student at Mt. Eden High, will join the National Honor Orchestra—an honor he has received for three years in a row. Ramos was a natural-born musician when he entered the music program in the 7th grade at Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School. Edwin participated in band and orchestra his 8th grade year and is self-taught on piano. He has received an invitation to audition for the prestigious Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California. He has also set up a fundraising page to help him get to Indianapolis.


Kevin and Earl Cato are the respective band and orchestra directors for Mt. Eden High School and couldn’t be any prouder of their students’ accomplishment. “The accepted students are a great example of the many dedicated and talented members of our  extraordinary visual and fine arts programs at Mt. Eden High School,” they stated. “Truly, they’re a testament that hard work, perseverance, and persistence will assist you in achieving your goals.” They have seen their students selected for honor ensembles for eleven consecutive years.


The Hayward Board of Education unanimously approved a Visual and Performing Arts Master Plan at its May 9, 2018 board meeting, which seeks to create an equitable arts plan. The plan is a framework for establishing a rigorous, standards-based arts education program for every child in the district.


Music for All, the organization that manages the music events that both students will participate in, is one of the largest and most influential national music education organizations in the country. Thousands of student applicants from across the country submitted video recordings of themselves, which were evaluated by members of the applied music faculty from some of the country’s leading universities and high schools. As a result, only a select few were chosen for this honor.