Last weekend, the Lion Band took their chosen ensembles and headed to Temple for the annual solo and ensemble competition. Five students came home with their tickets straight to state, which will take place in May. All of the students have worked very hard to make it this far, and plan to continue their hard work to succeed at the state competition.
“We have been preparing for weeks now,” senior Francisca Gomez said. “There’s been many different things that have gone wrong, but we kept working and it all paid off in the end.”
Students have been working on their ensemble music for months now, some since November or December. This is no surprise, considering the difficulty of these pieces. Students get to pick their own music, so they are able to choose pieces that they think they can play, as well as music that they enjoy playing.
“We had to think about several different things when deciding our music,” flutist Alexis Beldin said. “ We had to find a piece that everyone was able to play because we are all at different skill levels in our playing. But we also didn’t want to find a piece that would get boring after a while, so nobody would want to quit practicing.”
Not practicing is not the only problem that the students faced, however. One of the ensemble members, Natalie Gomez, had to work extra hard to achieve the same results as her teammates, because she is only in the eighth grade, while the rest of her peers are well into high school.
“I’d say the biggest challenge was not having enough time to practice,” Natalie said. “I wasn’t able to practice with the rest of my ensemble because my schedule was different and I always had a bunch of homework. I had to put in extra work to learn my music as well as the rest of my ensemble.”
The students have several more months to prepare and will go on to compete in the state solo and ensemble competition this May. There they will compete to advance to finals and hopefully achieve the ultimate goal of winning state with their group.