Band members perform at solo, ensemble competition

The+jazz+band+competed+as+an+ensemble+at+the+contest.
Back to Article
Back to Article

Band members perform at solo, ensemble competition

The jazz band competed as an ensemble at the contest.

The jazz band competed as an ensemble at the contest.

Abigail Bell

The jazz band competed as an ensemble at the contest.

Abigail Bell

Abigail Bell

The jazz band competed as an ensemble at the contest.

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Several band members competed in the annual band Solo and Ensemble contest Saturday at West Texas A&M University. Students in UIL Solo and Ensemble contest perform in front of a judge, who evaluates the performance on a scale of one to five. Schools from around the region participated in the contest.

“Solo and Ensemble competition is a UIL event done every second weekend of February,” assistant band director Luis Hernandez said. “At one point, it would be a precursor to going to the actual state competition down in Austin. We still participate in the regional version of the competition.”

Hernandez said the contest helps student musicians improve by providing an opportunity to play outside of a band setting.

I will do my best, and I will still be proud of it no matter what.”

— Thomas Lopez, 11

“Primarily, it works individual skills,” Hernandez said. “The secondary objective–it works small ensemble skills. It’s a team effort, and it really works the social skills–learning how to give and take on certain things. It really puts the emphasis on working on their individual skills, musical skills and working with either an accompanist (a solo) or working together as a team, in an ensemble. There’s nobody to hide behind. ”

Junior Thomas Lopez prepared a solo this year by Joseph DeLuca. Lopez, a euphonium player, began working on the solo in December.

“It’s a very popular piece,” Lopez said. “It’s called ‘Beautiful Colorado.’ It’s a really good piece to play. It’s really beautiful. I think I’ve prepared myself enough for it, and I’m still going to prepare myself in the time coming.”

Lopez did not participate in Solo and the Ensemble contest his freshman year.

“I feel like I’m going to mess up somewhere, but I’m not too nervous about it,” Lopez said. “I mean if I mess up, then whatever, but I feel that I will do my best, and I will still be proud of it no matter what. I pay attention to the good, and then I’ll just be proud either way.”

I love it, and I have loved it ever since I was a little kid, so it’s just natural for me to come in and pursue it in high school.”

— Laura Gill, 10

Sophomore Laura Gill prepared a solo on the French Horn.

“My solo this year is ‘Morceau de Concert’ by Saint Saens,” Gill said. “I feel actually really good about my solo this year. I’m excited to play it. I want to go into music when I’m out of high school.  I love it, and I have loved it ever since I was a little kid, so it’s just natural for me to come in and pursue it in high school.”

Gill received a first division ranking last year for her solo by Alexander Glazunov. The contest marks student musicians’ progress throughout the year and provides them with feedback, Gill said.

“I played ‘Rêverie for Horn,’” Gill said. “To prepare for Solo and Ensemble, I practiced a lot and picked out my solo. I have a private lesson teacher, so we work together about once a week, and then I played with my pianist some–just calmed down my nerves. I believe my audition went actually really well, considering I was sick that day. So I went in, and I performed, and it went really well.”