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Setting the tone

Band students make history with successful Region Band auditions

Members+of+Region+Band.+Photo+courtesy+of+the+Devine+News.
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Setting the tone

Members of Region Band. Photo courtesy of the Devine News.

Members of Region Band. Photo courtesy of the Devine News.

Members of Region Band. Photo courtesy of the Devine News.

Members of Region Band. Photo courtesy of the Devine News.

Abigail Kohlleppel, Editor-in-Chief

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Members of Region Band. Photo courtesy of the Devine News.

Seventeen members of the band earned a spot into the Region Band, with seven advancing to area, on Dec. 1, making history for the Devine High School Band.

“I am super honored to be a part of history, it pushes the band as a whole to strive for even more greatness after us,” junior Madilynne Mohr said. “I think it is awesome that 17 people made Region Band, and I am happy because I improved from last year and made it to area.”

Region Band is a select band which members have to audition for. They must have all of their music scales, chromatic scales and a slow and fast etude prepared to play in front of judges. Judges can’t see the player; they can only hear them.

“The hardest part is waiting for your turn,” junior Felicity Diaz said. “For me, the easiest part was the slower etude. It was rewarding to earn a part in the bass clarinet section.”

Over 350 students auditioned to make one of the limited spots available in the two region bands, even fewer advance to the area audition and have the chance to be in the All-State Band.

“It was crazy because I was the only girl in the section for the symphonic band,” sophomore Andrea Sanchez. “It was intimidating for sure, but I am glad to know I earned a spot in the Area Band.”

Several students have auditioned for Region Band for many years, some have even participated in middle school.

“I have tried out for four years and finally made seventh chair concert band,” junior Clarissa Maldonado said. “I had to practice a lot, which was tiring, but it was so worth it.”

Those who earn a chair then have to start preparing for the clinic and concert the following Friday and Saturday. They are given music from three to five different songs and must practice them on their own. On Friday, Dec. 7, they spent all day rehearsing with other band members and a selected director. Then, on Saturday, Dec. 8, they rehearsed in the morning and perform a concert in the afternoon.

“The clinic part was challenging because we had to learn a lot of music,” sophomore Peter Valerio said. “It was a lot of effort, and the concert truly showed our hard work.”

Those who advanced to area will keep practicing their audition materials and try out again in Orange Grove on Jan. 12 for a chance to be part of the All-State Band.

“This will be my second year advancing to the area competition,” senior Amelia Robinson said. “Last year I did well, but it is my goal to make it to state this year.”

Region Band gives students another outlet to broaden their musical abilities, and Devine band students love taking that chance.

“Being able to try out and be a part of a bigger band is such a cool feeling,” senior Christopher Salazar said. “I kind of knew I was good at my instrument in our band, but earning a spot in Region Band means so much more. I’m glad that opportunity is present.”

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Setting the tone