This is the twenty-third installment of a new chapter in our Student Features series on the blog that we will be posting leading up to the 2017 Music for All National Festival, presented by Yamaha. Music for All will be featuring three honor ensembles (Honor Band of America, Honor Orchestra of America, and the Jazz Band of America) at the Music for All National Festival, March 9th through March 11th. We look forward to getting to know all of these wonderful students who have been accepted into these prestigious ensembles!


Name: Mikayla Sweet

Hometown: Edmond, OK

School Name: Deer Creek High School

Instrument: Trumpet

Which Ensemble Are You In?
Honor Band of America

What made you decide to apply to be a part of the ensemble?
A few of my friends had mentioned it in passing, so I decided to check out the website to see what all the fuss was about. It mentioned that everyone who auditioned would receive comments from the judges. I sent in recordings of my first round all-state etudes, hoping I would receive critiques before my audition. I never expected that I would make the band!

What are three things you’ve learned from being involved in band or orchestra?
I have learned that the best things come from hard work, patience is key, and teamwork leads to succeed.

Most memorable moment in band or orchestra?
The first time I ever took an improv solo, my freshman year in jazz band, was probably the scariest and most memorable moment in band. I didn’t really have a good idea of what I was going to play, but as soon as it was my turn and I started, the notes just came out and fit the chords. It was the coolest feeling ever and the first time that I was able to successfully play by ear.

Besides band/orchestra, what are you involved in at school?
Most of my after school activities involve music in one way or another. Whether I’m giving lessons, in a rehearsal, or taking lessons, I almost always have a trumpet in my hand. However, I am also involved in my school’s National Honors Society.

What book have you read that you would recommend?
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith is definitely one of my favorites.

What’s your favorite song or piece of music?
I listen to so much music, my favorites are always changing, but I am a big fan of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition and anything by The Beatles.

Favorite ice cream flavor?

What’s your favorite non-music related hobby or past time?
I enjoy petting dogs, spending time with friends, and going to Raising Cane’s.

What’s your current plan for what you want to do after graduating high school?
I plan on getting a Bachelor’s degree in both Music Performance and Education. Then I will continue my schooling and get a Doctorate in Trumpet Performance. After college, I want to play in different ensembles across the country and eventually settle back down in Oklahoma as a trumpet professor.

Have you participated in MFA/BOA events before? Which ones?
Nope! This is my first event with Music for All!

Tell us something interesting/unique about you:
My family and I lived overseas in Bangkok, Thailand for three years when I was younger.