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Music critique was way off the mark

In response to Dennis McNish's letter dated March 8, titled 'Guitar Playing Could Have Been Better,' I would like to share a bit about the Lake Oswego High School Bands (there are actually three) under the direction of Mr. Dave Matthys.

Mr. Matthys has done an incredible job of recruiting talented musicians. The size of the band has grown every year that he has been at the high school. It is an energetic and dynamic program that is exciting to be around. He demands a level of excellence from his students and in return he gives up many evenings and weekends in service to the school, the athletic programs, the theatrical performances, and his bands and individual musicians. The pep band that plays for the athletic events adds enormous value to the games and the overall spirit of the school. The band travels to events where they compete at the highest levels and they represent the high school and the city of Lake Oswego well. Band members, along with being accomplished musicians, are also scholars, athletes, leaders, artists and very fine ambassadors for us all. They deserve our thanks and admiration.

In response to a performance that he found to be not to his taste, Mr. McNish suggested that the 'Lake Oswego High School, the sports fans and the city of Lake Oswego deserve a lot more.' This is just plain wrong, incredibly ill-informed and out of line.

I would invite Mr. McNish, and all the Review readers, to attend any one of a number of upcoming events where the various bands will be performing and competing. Spring is competition season for the bands and they would relish your support. For a list of the upcoming contests and performances, please visit the Lake Oswego High School Web site, but I would recommend that you mark your calendar for May 4 at 7:30 p.m. when all bands will perform in the Spring Concert.

If you haven't had the opportunity to enjoy the musical performances in the new auditorium, you are missing something truly awesome. It's free and it's the best show in town.

Hope to see you there, Mr. McNish. I'm sure you won't find it 'musical (?) debauchery.'

Beth Olen is a resident of Lake Oswego.