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UPDATE: Parent Mad "Anthem of Soviet Socialist Republic" Is Required Audition For Son

Father says song should be pulled from audition materials.
This update statement submitted via email from Frederic:

"I believe that the inclusion of the National Anthem of the former USSR as an audition piece in this context is not the best choice, and would encourage the supervising committee to perhaps consider another piece of music in the future which would equally demonstrate a student's musical ability.

Furthermore, in no way do I feel in my mind or heart that any student who chooses to play from this audition piece Saturday if asked is supporting the oppression of human rights nor did I attempt to say or indicate anything to that effect.  That would be absurd and preposterous.  However, it is apparent to me that my decision to dictate to my son that he was not to play the piece if asked is in fact representative of "an oppression of a human right", in this case my son's freedom of choice as an American, a freedom he would not have had in the former Soviet Union. 

After further consideration and discussion with my son and his mom, we've decided to teach a larger and more important lesson by allowing our son to make his own decision Saturday morning.  The auditions are anonymous and no one will know the decision my son made, except him.  Either way, being able to audition for the South Arkansas All-Region Orchestra successfully is much more important to my son and to me than fighting this battle at this time."

Original Story:

LITTLE ROCK, AR -- An Arkansas father is upset his son has to play "Anthem of the Soviet Socialist Republic" during a required audition this weekend.

Auditions for the Arkansas South Region Conference will be held Saturday at Mills High School.

Students have to perform three arranged pieces chosen by a committee. This year, one of the pieces is "Anthem of the Soviet Socialist Republic."

The song bothers Phil Frederick, whose son will audition for the performing group.

"It represents oppression and evil and the oppression of human rights," said Frederic.

The father says the song represents a dark age in history.

"I support the United States of America and certainly I am not going to support anything any flag or any national anthem that may have represented the oppression of human rights," said Frederic.

Making the 300 member orchestra is a huge accomplishment for any young musician, but Frederic has told his son not to play the piece if instructed.

Frederic says his son understands why he is being told not to play the song and is okay with it.

"It really shouldn't be a part of the curriculum as a performance piece," said Frederic. 

The Arkansas School Band and Orchestra association sponsors the event

In response, the executive secretary says quote "the purpose of the music is to judge a student's musical ability, not to promote a political agenda or position."

Association leaders say the song has been in the audition materials for years and as of right now, they are not making any changes.

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