End-of-Year Placement Audition Information

As we look forward to the next school year, here is information about our annual end-of-year placement auditions.  Auditions will be held during your child’s band class from April 25 to May 6All current 6th and 7th grade band students are required to participate for a major grade.  This audition serves as the individual assessment of each student’s musical skills mastered from this school year.  Think of this as the individual STAAR test for Band, and the music can be found here: tinyurl.com/bmsbandauditions

The concert portion of the Belton Middle School Band consists of 3 ensembles: the Beginner’s Ensemble, the Symphonic Band, and the Wind Ensemble.  This audition serves as the placement exam for students into one of these 3 groups.  Students in the Beginner’s Ensemble are from grades 6-8, while students in the advanced groups (Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble) are from grades 7th and 8th only.  Placement in these advanced ensembles is based on ability and musicianship, not grade level.  Much like when students move from 6th to 7th grade, Symphonic Band serves as the natural next step in the progression from Beginner’s Ensemble.  Wind Ensemble serves as the premier group, and students in both groups participate in pep rallies, concerts, contests, etc.

For wind players, the audition material consists of scales and a brief sightreading excerpt.  Percussion students will audition with Mr. Smith on similar material.  Detailed information about scales and sightreading has been provided directly to students, and each audition should last no more than 5-10 minutes.  The assessment rubric has also been provided directly to students.  Students will play their audition only once, and will not be allowed to redo it.  Auditions will be audio recorded for directors’ reference, not for public distribution.

Students will earn a separate score and grade for their audition.  Scores determine ensemble placement, and grades are earned based on each student’s individual audition preparation, performance, and potential.  For this major grade, only the following grades will be given: 100, 85, 70, and 50.  Any student who earns a grade of 50 will be required to repeat Beginning Band next year if they wish to remain in the Belton Middle School Band program.

For interested saxophone, trumpet, trombone, and percussion students, this audition also serves as placement into our Jazz Band.  No additional music is required to prepare for this ensembleNot all students who audition for Jazz Band will earn a spot in this group.  Students must be concurrently enrolled in either Symphonic Band or Wind Ensemble, and use 2 elective choices in order to participate in this elite group.

Audition results are final and will be officially posted on Friday, May 13 at 8:00am.  These results will be sent to the school counselors for next year’s scheduling.  Those students choosing to not remain in Band next year will not have their results posted.

Thank you for taking the time to read through this letter to ensure a smooth audition process.  As always, if there are any questions, please contact one of the directors.  Thank you for your support of the Belton MS Band!

Wind Ensemble’s UIL Contest Schedule

Click here to find the schedule for our upcoming UIL Concert & Sightreading Evaluation next Tuesday, March 29 at Midway HS. Students will bring their formal uniform with them to school (or just wear it to school) and will have time to change after lunch. We will be feeding them Chick-fil-A in the Band Hall, so students need to bring $10 by this Friday or they may have elected to bring a sack lunch. Students will miss 4th period through 8th period classes, and will need to make up their class work. This can also be done during our 6th period class on Wednesday.

We need parents to help chaperone! If you are available and can help, please email Mr. Pulley ASAP. Parents and family are invited to come watch our performance at Midway HS, which starts at 2:30pm. We should return back to BMS around 4:30pm. Let us know if you have any questions.

Spring Trip Dress Code

Yesterday, all band students were given detailed information about the swimsuit dress code for our upcoming Spring Trip to Typhoon Texas (Austin) on Saturday, May 14.  Boys and girls were given the information separately with Mr. Pulley presenting the information to boys in the Band Hall, and Mrs. Marshall (Choir Director) presenting the information to girls in the Choir Room.  You can view the slideshow yourself by clicking on this link: https://tinyurl.com/springtripdresscode 

After Spring Break, every band student will be given this eligibility information for our Spring Trip filled out with their individually-specific information on a hard copy.  It states their current eligibility status, information for chaperones, and the cost that is due no later than Money Monday, April 11.  Please take time to read through these pages as it contains detailed information for our Spring Trip coming up in May.  Feel free to email Mr. Pulley if you have any questions.

Recap of Last Week

It was a very busy last week when the Belton MS Band had 3 performances all in the same week! Last Thursday, we had 5 students place in the TMEA All-Region Jazz Band and you can find out all of the details on our website here.

Friday, the Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble performed their UIL program for parents and judges to listen and make constructive comments for the upcoming UIL Concert & Sightreading Evaluation on March 29-30. You can watch their performance here.

On Saturday, we held our 2nd Annual Solo & Ensemble Contest here at BMS. We had over 135 events with 93 First Division Superior ratings given by the judges, 31 Second Division Excellent ratings, and 12 Third Division Average ratings. Students who earned a First Division rating will earn a medal at the End-of-Year Awards Ceremony. Students who earned a Second Division will earn a ribbon, and all students will receive their judge comments sheets back this week.

Overall, we had 14 students who were named Outstanding Performers by the judges and will receive an additional special medal at the end of the year. Please join us in congratulating these students:

  1. Ellen Miller, flute
  2. Shyam Ramani, flute
  3. Kenna Cushman, bassoon
  4. Daniel Arroyo, alto saxophone
  5. David McCallum, alto saxophone
  6. Jakoby Perez, alto saxophone
  7. Hope Bovell, trumpet
  8. Jesus Espinosa-Terrazas, trumpet
  9. Abigail Chapman, horn
  10. Nick Iannuccilli, trombone
  11. Brianna Snyder, euphonium
  12. Abigail Fuller, percussion
  13. Emma Harvey, percussion
  14. Alyssa Nickerson, percussion

All-Region Jazz Results

Please help me congratulate the band students listed below who earned a spot in the TMEA All-Region Jazz Band.  These students will get to rehearse with a notable jazz educator and perform all in one day as part of the Temple Jazz Festival in early April.

  • Nathan Whitfield placed 1st Chair out of 20 trombones, and is a Concert All-Region Member
  • Claire Brown placed 4th Chair trombone
  • Charlie Wagner placed 5th Chair trombone, and is a Concert All-Region Member
  • Corin Ramesar placed 1st Chair out of 4 pianos, and is a 2-Year Jazz All-Region Member
  • Alyssa Nickerson placed 1st Chair out of 6 vibraphones, and is a 2-Year Jazz All-Region Member, AND is a 2-Year Concert All-Region Member
  • Jayden Holt placed 6th Chair out of 33 trumpets, and serves as the 1st Alternate, AND is a Concert All-Region Member