Mackay Drum Major Natasha Rees.
Mackay Drum Major Natasha Rees. Peter Holt

Stepping into the band leader role is a 'huge honour'

WHEN she picked up the violin in Year 4, Natasha Rees never dreamed she would one day be leading and performing in some of the biggest parades around the world.

But that's exactly what's happened as Natasha - now in Year 11 and an accomplished violinist, flautist, singer and dancer - prepares to lead the Mackay North State High School marching band at this year's Anzac Day parade in Brisbane.

If that wasn't exciting enough, Miss Rees and the rest of the band will also take a trip to America over the June/July school holidays to perform in the Independence Day, USS Midway and Disneyland parades.

"I'm very honoured and very excited about all of it," Miss Rees said.

"The Anzac parade is especially exciting this year because it pays tribute to the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli, so it's a huge honour."

Miss Rees said she has always been interested in anything musical.

"I'm also in the choir at school and in the string ensemble and I participate in the drama productions... I've been singing and dancing for over 10 years," Miss Rees said.

Band director Kathy

George said the students were counting the sleeps until their overseas adventure.

"It's an incredible opportunity to be part of a spectacular world event like the Independence Day Parade in Los Angeles," she said.

"And of course Disneyland will be a very special treat."

But Miss Rees said she was most excited about the USS Midway Parade where the band would get to try out new formations and manoeuvres.

When she graduates from high school, Miss Rees dreams of becoming a musical theatre director.

"Being able to direct all the choreography and put a whole show together would be an amazing feeling."

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