The ACSI Europe Honors Music Festival returned this year after a four-year break, and ICSB was honored to host the event.
Over 70 students from seven international Christian schools came together for choral and band performances on Sunday, March 19, at several locations in the Budapest area. ICSB had 17 students selected to be a part of the group. Two conductors, Mr. Timothy Sawyer (Choral) and Dr. Cassandra Bechard (Instrumental) came from the University of Northwestern - St. Paul (UNWSP), to lead the students. They worked together for only a few days to bring the beautiful, uplifting performances together. Mr. Sawyer is a veteran of these events and was so happy to return to Budapest. He shared, "we experienced so much joy making music with this dedicated and diverse group of young people. The return was worth waiting for!"
Rebecca Lingenhoel, our Upper School choral and band director, was instrumental in bringing this event back to life this year. She organized so many facets of the festival, including housing for all the participants, food, transportation, and general overall care for all involved. Mr. Sawyer describes her as the "mastermind behind the event"! After all was done, Mrs. Lingenhoel said, "It was a joy to see students back together. It was an opportunity for them to grow in their musicianship, socially and spiritually, as they come together with like-minded students. They gave their time and abilities to create something beautiful and of high quality with the gifts God has given them. ICSB students opened their hearts to serve our guests, and ICSB families and staff came alongside and helped, and we once again experienced what it is to live in community. We were blessed!"
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises!" - Psalm 98:4
ICSB Honors students enjoyed a broader view of music styles and very much enjoyed making new friends from across Europe. One parent shared that her daughter "had a blast and came home beaming!" She said her daughter "Can't wait until next year and hopes she will have the opportunity to participate again!"
We are so grateful for the return of this wonderful event for ICSB and our friends in other international Christian schools across Europe. Next year, the location will be different but the joys will be the same. Can't wait!
Photos by: Sándor Bálint