Band advances 23 students to area audition


photo by Kate Haas

Junior Xinrae Cardozo warms up on her French horn before school. She is a three-time Area musician.

From the release of their audition music on Jul. 23 to the Region 2 Band auditions on Dec. 1, 23 students placed high enough in their respective sections to advance to the next stage of the TMEA All-State band auditions: Area.

They are now expected to continue to work on the three etudes until Area auditions on Jan. 12. Junior Xinrae Cardozo, two-time All-State French horn player, said she wishes they could play new music for the Area audition.

“I’m tired of the etudes,” Cardozo said. “If I were only practicing them for four weeks, I would like them better because they’re nice to listen to, but after [what feels like] five years, no.”

Responsibilities for Area advancers at Hebron include after school rehearsals and playing in front of the class daily. Cardozo said she feels some pressure to perform well and make All-State again, but she can handle the stress.

“The only pressure comes from yourself or the directors, but it’s mostly all from yourself,” Cardozo said. “It’s not that bad if you can control it.”

There is a two-day Area camp during winter break that the students are encouraged to attend.

“The Area camp is designed to expose your playing and you get scrutinized a lot,” Cardozo said. “If you look at it as an extra performance opportunity, then it helps you.”

To reach the Area level, most students have to advance through a Phase 1 Region audition, then place high in the second phase as well.

“I can’t say how hard it is [to make Area] for any other instrument because I don’t know the standards,” Cardozo said. “But for horn, it’s pretty cutthroat: it’s just one of those instruments where you can either play it or you can’t.”

The Area audition determines who makes the All-State band. Students who place well enough and make All-State attend the TMEA Convention that takes place on Feb. 13-16.

“It’s so fun,” Cardozo said. “The best part of it is you’re treated like a glorified person there. No adults are around too, so you get a lot of freedom to have fun with your friends.”