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Solo and Ensemble

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Solo and Ensemble

Camden Colquhoun, TVB1 Reporter

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Hard at work… the band students here at Lebanon Trail High School are in the middle of preparing for a district-wide solo and ensemble competition.

The competition which will be held on Saturday, February 23rd is open to any member of the band, no matter what instrument. Students put many hours into practicing these pieces to try and get a good score at the competition.

“I’d say I spend about nine hours a week practicing my solo,” said Hannah Dryden, a french horn player. “I love how it challenges me to grow in my skills and make me a better player.”

Although it is a time commitment, practicing for this competition is a valuable experience for many players.

“Solo and ensemble challenges you to grow as a musician,” Dryden explained.

Madhu Joshi, a flute player, agrees. “It is not just a competition to be the best,” she said. “It is a competition meant to help you grow and determine your level of musicality.”

Each participant is required to perform a solo, which can come from many genres of music. Joshi is performing “Sonata III in G Major,” a Baroque piece, while Dryden is performing “Strauss Concerto No.1 in Eb Major,” a Romantic piece. Kayla Schlotman, a bassoon player, is even performing “Bassoon Concerto in Bb Major by Mozart,” a Classical piece.

“It’s so rewarding hearing the final product,” Schlotman said.

Additionally, competition participants have the option to be a part of an ensemble. Dryden and Schlotman are part of a woodwind quintet ensemble, an ensemble consisting of a french horn, a bassoon, a Bb clarinet, an oboe, and a flute.

“Ensembles help a player learn how to color the instrument’s sound to those around them,” said Dryden, “which is a very important thing in music.”

The students will continue to work on their pieces in the coming weeks, a difficult but very rewarding experience.

“It’s fun gaining the experience of preparing and performing in front of judges,” said Schlotman, “along with realizing how far I’ve come.”

 

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