Bands striving for superior, Matching against the mentality of Music

Yunfei Chen

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The District Band Assessment is a defining moment for school bands, as they show what musical skills and talents they’ve developed over the school year. The assessments rank from five to one, one being superior.
The groups that will be playing at the district assessments are symphonic band and wind ensemble. Symphonic band is recognized as the lower band with mainly freshmen and sophomores. Wind ensemble is known as the upper band with grade levels from juniors to seniors.
The assessments are composed of two different tests. There iss a prepared piece test and a sight reading test. Their prepared pieces are “The All American March” by Chris Sharp, “Vigil’s Keep” by Julie Giroux, and “Persis” by James L. Hosay.
Students have been putting in their best effort in order to do well and continue the school’s streak of maintaining superior throughout the years. The band has been a Virginia Honor Band for the past 14 consecutive years.
In former years, the students used to start practices earlier in the year. This year, the students have had fewer morning practices, but more practices during their lunch period.
“District Assessment is a blast! It’s great getting to dedicate time to a performance bigger than any one performer. Our music is coming together really well this year, and I think we are setting ourselves for another great performance. The event is an enriching experience for all of the band members and we’ve learned so much this time around. I’m excited beyond words for assessment, and I’m hopeful for a superior rating.”, senior Christopher Hamilton said.
There are also stakes being raised as the designation of the Virginia Music Educators Association Blue Ribbon School title is on the line. The honor is given when the top concert, orchestra, and choir all receive a superior rating on their assessments. The school has been a blue ribbon school for the past 11 consecutive years, being the longest for any high school in state.
The music department has a longstanding commitment to excellence and has its eyes set on bringing back another superior rating and continuing the streak of being a blue ribbon school.

Bands striving for superior, Matching against the mentality of Music