MMI Preparatory School junior Benjamin Putnam placed third out of 11 string bass musicians at the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association (PMEA) District Orchestra Festival seating auditions and will advance to the Northeast Region Orchestra Festival in February. He prepared for the audition under the guidance of MMI music instructor Christine Lizbinski.

Putnam, the son of Benjamin and Andrea Putnam of Sugarloaf, will be one of 40 students representing the area at the regional festival, which will be held from February 20-22 at Kutztown Area High School.

He also participated in the recent District 9 Orchestra Festival, which was held at Marywood University, along with 125 musicians from throughout the Northeast Pennsylvania region.

The mission of the PMEA is to advance comprehensive and innovative music education for all teachers and students through quality teaching, rigorous learning, and meaningful music engagement. PMEA’s District 9 comprises schools from Luzerne, Wayne, Susquehanna, Wyoming, and Lackawanna counties.