By Barak Levy | Sports Editor
The Mustang band is now preparing for the state band competitions that are held in November. They have been practicing for months in preparation for this competition, which is held once every two years.
The band practices many hours a week. They practice every morning during marching season from 7 to 8:30 am, every Tuesday from 4:45 to 6:45 p.m. as well as during the band class period every day. They practice to prepare themselves for football games, pep rallies and this year’s state competitions.
“The MMB always strives to be the best we can be at all times,” junior drum major Liz Spence said. “Even if it’s not a state year, we work really hard all season for football game performances and marching contests.”
Even though the band has a chance to compete in the state competition this year, that does not change the mindset of the band. The band works as hard during a non-state year as a state year, but making the state competition is just another goal that band members strive toward.
“Nothing really changes in terms of preparation during a state year versus a non-state year,” band director Dimitrios Icossipentarhos said. “As a staff and student leadership team, we continue to push for continued growth and development each year.”
There are two levels of competition leading to the state competition. The band competes in a regional competition for a chance to compete in the area competition and competes in the area competition for a chance to compete in the state competition. The Mustangs’ regional marching contest was on Oct. 19, the area marching competition was on Oct. 29, and the state marching competition is held from Nov. 7 to Nov. 9.
The Mustangs received a “one” out of four in the UIL Area C marching contest. A “one” is the highest score they could have received, and this score advanced them to the area marching competition.
The entire marching band competes in the marching contests, and band members also compete in All-Region in the fall. These are solo competitions where band members compete in region to try to advance to area where they compete to try to advance to the state competition. Competing in All-Region is not required but is highly encouraged, and this year’s band members have an opportunity to make it to the all state competition, which is only offered every other year.
Though it is a state year, the environment of the band is practically the same as a non-state year. The band is a very close group that has created a community around their program.
“The band is a very open atmosphere. You feel accepted, and it feels like a family,” freshman Landon Branskey said.
The Mustang band is one of the hardest working groups at Pearce, whether it is a state year or not. However, band members are very aware that it is a state year, and the state competition is a very important aspect to many members experience in band this year.
“Because its a state year, we are all super-driven to do our best at all times,” Liz said. “We make sure to give our all at every rehearsal and make the most of each time we have to improve together.”