The San Saba Bands attended the Region 7 UIL Solo & Ensemble contest at Howard Payne University in Brownwood on February 9th. This event is a competition where individual band members compete against a set standard on his/her individual instrument and/or in a small ensemble. At this event, students earn a rating from 1-5 (1 being the best).
Fifty-one students (7th-12th) competed in 30 solo & ensemble entries. Of the 30 entries signed up, 20 solo and/or ensembles received medals for earning a division 1 superior rating! An additional 10 solo and/or ensembles received a division 2. No San Saba student received a lower rating than division 2. Of the 30 entries to earn a division one, seven entries (consisting of 22 students) advanced to Texas State Solo & Ensemble in Pflugerville on Monday May 27th.
This is a very large number of students to advance to state from the San Saba band program. Rarely do remote 1A schools like San Saba have such a high participation rate and success at the annual Region UIL Solo & Ensemble contest. However, the San Saba band program has bucked the expectations given to 1A schools and established a tradition of sending many students to State Solo & Ensemble. In fact, the San Saba band program has sent more than 20 students to State Solo & Ensemble in each of the last two years! The following students will be advancing to state: Madison Monroe (Snare) and Nickie Ortiz (flute) advanced on solos, which had to be memorized Also, five ensembles advanced to state, including: a saxophone trio with Andrea Jimenez, Marissa Coffman-Spence, and Joely Haverland (alto); a saxophone trio with John Watson, Erika Vega, and Joely Haverland (Tenor); a Woodwind Quartet with Katy Ingram, Brooke Nagle, Stormy Ramos, and Rubi Rojas; a brass quintet with Mikayla Eden, Ethan Ingram, Braiden Johnson, Brian Rogers, and Ehren Thomas; a brass sextet with Brandon Amstead, Carter Eden, Dylan Edmondson, Jarrett Mathis, Aaron Rixse, and Daniel Rosales.
Earning a division one on any solo or ensemble entry at the region level takes a great amount of time and effort that is already stretched thin between the other activities these students participate in. However, to earn a chance to compete on the state level takes maturity, motivation and commitment that certainly warrants respect and praise. Please find a moment to congratulate these state-advancing band students for their continued dedication and success. I also want to say “THANK YOU” to the admin, coaches, staff, and parents for supporting all the band students through allotting time and resources for them to practice and compete.