Covering the Bronco Nation.

The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

Covering the Bronco Nation.

The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

Covering the Bronco Nation.

The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

Bronco Minute 4-19
Boys’ 4×4 Relay Advances to Regionals
Bronco Minute 4-12
Advertisement
Bronco Minute 4-19
Boys’ 4×4 Relay Advances to Regionals
Bronco Minute 4-12
Advertisement

Orchestra Prepares for Annual UIL Contest

Orchestra+students+rehearse+on+Feb.+7.+Photo+by+Ben+Barber+Orchestra+Instagram.
Orchestra students rehearse on Feb. 7. Photo by Ben Barber Orchestra Instagram.

Junior Hannah Mabe walks through the rows of chairs and stands in the orchestra room, reaching her seat to start a long and detailed rehearsal in preparation for their next performance. The Ben Barber Varsity Chamber Orchestra prepares for the annual University Interscholastic League (UIL) contest, where they will perform for judges for an award on Feb. 23.

The ensemble evaluation consists of a prepared performance of three pieces and a sight-reading portion where students must perform a piece they have never seen before to three judges. The judges then grade each section on a scale of one to five, with one being the highest score possible. Orchestra director Alex Young began performing at UIL with this orchestra six years ago, with this being the third year they will compete on the varsity level. 

“I try not to prepare for UIL any differently than any other performance but inevitably when we know it’s going to be evaluated I tend to get a lot pickier on even the most subtle things,” Young said. 

Orchestra prepares for months before competing in UIL.

To help prepare, the orchestra performs a mock contest where they run through the motions of UIL without the official title to get used to how it works. They also record the mock contest and use it to find areas of improvement before the real thing at the end of Feb. 

“I personally really like getting into the nitty gritty pickiness of UIL because it’s a balance between getting all the individuals to play correctly and making that come together as a group,” Young said. “We truly fine-tune each piece and make the ensemble sound fantastic.”

Each student must put forth a minimum of 2-3 months of extensive effort for each piece to come together and contribute to the orchestra during UIL preparation. Violin player Hannah Mabe, 11, joined the orchestra program five years ago and counts UIL as one of her favorite parts of playing her instrument. 

“Individually I have to practice the small intricate parts of each piece at home and pay attention to detail that may only pertain to my instrument,” Mabe said. “I think as a group we rehearse really well and It always ends up coming together whether we’re in class or on stage.”

If the group performs at the highest standards, they will receive an award known as sweepstakes meaning all of the judges gave them a score of one. If achieved, this will be the second year in a row the orchestra received this honor. 

“Before I started teaching this group I wanted to quit teaching, but coming and conducting this group of musicians and experiencing their hard work and dedication has completely reawakened my love of teaching and music,” Young said.

About the Contributor
Jackson Gourley
Jackson Gourley, Staff Writer
Hi, I’m Jackson. I’m a senior but this is my first year in journalism and I love to travel and discover new music.
Leave a Comment
Donate to The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media
$3000
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Mansfield Legacy High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs and travel to media workshops.

More to Discover
Donate to The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media
$3000
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *