UIL Area Competition


Senior Shaylee Durst observes her band as they trek the field during their drill.

Brayden Hogue, Graphic Designer

On Oct. 26 the band is set to compete at Area UIL Marching Contest. This will be the first time that the band has chosen to advance past regional marching under the direction of band director Thomas Mensch. 

“If our motto is to ‘make our best better’ then the only way we can do that is by exposing our students to greater competition than just a ratings-based system,” Mensch said. “In the current regional contest, you have a rubric and you’re not ranked against other programs, and so for us to truly define where we are in the scope of the competitive realm of other programs, we need to be ranked in such a way.”

The band has been scoring a one at region contest for 29 years, yet have opted out of advancing past that point. They started getting into the competitive nature of marching last year by going to the National Association of Military Marching Bands (NAAMB) contest.

“It is really neat to see how the band’s mindset transitions from one contest to another,” Head Drum Major Shaylee Durst said. “You can really see how much pride this band holds with everything we have accomplished over the years.”

The band practices every morning along with Monday nights to run their contest drill to perfection. They also have after school sectionals for individual sections to define their articulations and dynamics.

“The greatest factor in improving our band program hasn’t been adding more hours of practice but about utilizing our practices,” Squad Leader Regan Hamill said. “We have been more focused at practices through Mensch giving us a stronger mental discipline that has taught us to treat each practice as if it was it’s own competition.”