NEW CONCORD -- The Department of Music at Muskingum College hosted its annual YouthFest '08 festival on Nov. 15 and 16 with a variety of classes and activities on the campus. A total of 50 area high school wind and percussionists were chosen to attend by their music teachers.

Local high school students taking part included:

Newcomerstown High School -- Cory Martin of Newcomerstown, Class of 2009, trombone;

John Glenn High School -- Jaclyn Young of Norwich, Class of 2009, flute; Dakota Thorn of New Concord, Class of 2009, bassoon; Kelsi Cunningham of New Concord, Class of 2009, French horn.

This festival, YouthFest Wind & Percussion, included two days of intensive study in music and performance. During the festival, students had two option periods, in which they attended workshops in music theory, music literature, careers in music, what it means to be a music major, and how to work with an accompanist. They also attended and performed in a master class in their instrument. Included were nine hours of wind ensemble rehearsal to prepare for the event's finale, a performance by the students on Sunday, Nov. 16.

The attendees were instructed by most of the music faculty from the college, as well as other experts in their respective fields of music. Dr. William Schlacks served as conductor for the performance and as coordinator of the festival. Dr. Schlacks is chair of the department of music at Muskingum, where he is also the Ruth Dorsey Neptune Distinguished Professor of Fine Arts.