Making history: SHS senior first in state to win top honor at ISSMA state event

Making history: SHS senior first in state to win top honor at ISSMA state event
Posted on 02/24/2018

Scottsburg High School senior Isaak Mount is the first student in the state’s history to receive a gold rating with distinction in piano at this year’s Indiana State School Music Association State Solo and Ensemble held on Feb. 17 at Perry Meridian Middle School in Indianapolis. The “with distinction” designation is new this year at the State Solo and Ensemble event.

“I am very proud to have received the honor. It is a wonderful recognition for the hard work I put into playing the piano,” Mount said.

Since October 2017, Mount has worked on playing “Arabesque No. 1” by Claude Debussy for the Solo and Ensemble event. Debussy’s work is complicated and requires proper technique to play the sensitive touches and capture the right tone that marks the style of the classical music from the late 19th century.

Prior to receiving the gold rating with distinction, Mount has only played snare drum and marimba at other Solo and Ensemble events through the band program at SHS. He never participated in any Piano and Solo and Ensemble event until this academic year.

“Each year, the band directors encourage the students to take a solo or ensemble to the event,” Mount said.

For Mount, taking home the highest honor at the State Solo and Ensemble event speaks to the years of work he has put into becoming the pianist he is today. He has been playing piano for a decade while taking lessons for about seven years. Mount plans to keep playing piano after high school.

“I do plan to keep up my piano playing ability after high school. If I can find some sort of band to play the piano in, I would like to do that,” Mount said. “Also, I have contemplated the idea of still taking piano lessons in college.”