By: Ariana Johnson
Last year the band didn’t make it to Area, so they made a resolution to make it to Area this year and they did. Saturday, October 29th, at Calallen High School, the Pleasanton Mighty Eagle Band tried their hardest at Area and they placed 21st out of 36th bands.
As to represent the senior class in band for all of the hard work they put in the last four years, they all gave their sashes to an educator that had impacted their lives. Many of the educators were surprised by this, but also really happy that they were the ones chosen out of the many educators that each senior had in their lives.
Mr. Solis wanted to do something different when deciding which students should be put in which band. The band directors gave all the kids what they were going to play for them and then tested each student separately. When asked why they decided to change how things worked, he said, “We felt that the audition process was a fairer way of deciding who was in each group. It also allows for students to challenge if they feel that they are not in the correct band placement.”
On November 12th, The Pleasanton Jazz Band and Drumline perform at the Fall Festival in the Pleasanton High School Courtyard. All of the students that went and played at the Fall Festival looked like they had a lot of fun there. Mr. Solis stated, “The Jazz Band and Drumline were very excited to be a part of the festival and look forward to performing at the event again next year.”
December is a very busy month for many students in band. On December 3rd, The Mighty Eagle Band played at the Merry on Main Parade and they played “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”, “O Come All Ye Faithful”, and “Jingle Bells”. They also got the 1st place plaque for the Best Marching Band. On that same day many band kids went to Lytle High School to try to get into the All Region Band and All Region Jazz Band. Mr. Solis stated from all of the band directors, “We are looking forward to having a great representation from our band program. We will have over 40 students auditioning and we hope to have a large number of students earn spots in the All Region band.”
On December 5th, the Symphonic band and Wind Ensemble had their Christmas concert at the Performing Arts Center. The Symphonic band played, “Wintertide”, “Christmas Canon”, “Holly and the Ivy”, and “Holiday Swing Along”. After the Symphonic band played, Miss. Yarnell came out and said, “Since PHS added a new band director. I had the time to do a percussion class with nine members in it, and we worked on Drumline music and worked on an assemble for the Fall/Winter concert. We will also be having one in the Spring concert.” After Miss Yarnell talked the percussion ensemble played “Deck the Halls”, and “Christmas Holiday” which was a mixture of many different Christmas songs. Once the Wind Assemble was ready they started their part of the concert with “The Ukrainian Bell Carol” then went to “Joy to the World”, “Silent Night”, and “All I Want for Christmas is You”. The Symphonic band returned to perform with the Wind Assemble. They played and surprised the audience by singing, “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”
After the winter concert is done the Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble Band will be learning their UIL music. The band directors have music in mind for each band to play. Mr. Solis said, “ We plan to challenge both groups with exciting and more difficult selections for this year’s UIL contest. By then the band directors will know what music each band should play. By what Mr. Solis stated, “Each year we have a number of musical selections in mind for the groups, but it always depends on the strengths and weaknesses for each group. We should be able to see where each group is in the weeks leading up to the Christmas concert.”
The band has made many memories this year that they will remember, even after high school. They also enjoyed their time together with their band directors when the students do funny things, or get side-tracked with another conversation then the one that they were on about. The band has had a great year whether it was in marching or it was on stage, each and every student had made new friends, and became one big family in the end.