LTHS Band placed 2nd in Area UIL contest


LTHS Band performs at Area UIL contest. Photo Credit: LTHS Yearbook

Makayla Montee, Guest Writer

After months of hard work and dedication, the Lebanon Trail High School Varsity Marching Band placed 2nd in the Area B Marching Contest finals on October 22, 2022, at the Mckinney ISD Stadium. 


Beginning in mid-July, the Lebanon Trail Band began to earnestly practice in order to prepare the many aspects of their 2022 UIL show Tapestries. 


“When we started summer band this year, we very intentionally introduced marching fundamentals at a slow and steady pace,” Director of Bands Kelly Wykoff said. “We progressively built on those skills throughout the year.”


Not only did the band work on marching skills but they also worked on the musical aspect of the show. 


“We introduced music fundamentals at a slow and steady pace in the beginning and progressively built on those throughout the year,” Wykoff said. “We layered in new music and then throughout the year, worked steadily but surely on all of those different elements.”


For many students, this was their last marching contest with the LT Marching Band. 


“I got really emotional [during our closer]. I was like “This is my last time hearing this, seeing this, conducting this,” said Senior Drum Major Bridgette Thomas. “It was just a really special moment… and I’m going to treasure [it].” 


Similar to Thomas, the final performance was emotional for other marchers. 


“When I was laying down [at the very end], it was like I was putting my high school marching season to an end,” Senior Mellophone Section Leader Claire Nelson said. 


After weeks of work, the contest was the grand finale of a long but successful marching season. 


“Saturday was a celebration of all our hard work put in throughout the season,” Thomas said. 


After working tirelessly for months, the band was driven for many reasons to perform well at Area. 


“[I think] being able to walk off the field and know that you had a great performance, connecting with your other friends on the field that are performing alongside you, [and] knowing that you gave it your all is probably the biggest motivator,” Wykoff said. 


Despite the struggles from the past few years due to Covid, the band came back stronger than ever. 

“I was so proud. I couldn’t have been happier because last year was a little bit rocky,” Thomas said. “It felt full circle that we came back to where we were my freshman year (Rain 2019). We deserved it.”


Unlike Rain in 2019, Tapestries in 2022 featured a french horn solo in the ballad. 


“It was absolutely crazy [to have a solo] because I would never in a million years think I’d have a solo [in the marching show],” said Junior French Horn Soloist Sofia Chaho. “It was such an honor.”


Similar to Thomas and Nelson, Chaho was sad to see the 2022 marching season come to an end. 


“At the end of closer, I felt emotional because I felt really happy, really sad, and also accomplished,” Chaho said. 


Throughout the marching season, the students learned and grew not only their marching and musical skills, but also their character and the way they see the world. 


“Band changed the way I think of things. I used to think of things as wins or losses but now I think of things as a celebration or, if we don’t do as well, a learning experience,” Thomas said. “It’s a way to grow or build your character and learn to handle criticism and apply it to whatever you do.”


In addition, students learned many crucial life skills throughout their years in the Lebanon Trail Band. 


“We have such high morals that our placements don’t really matter, we just learn how to be an amazing band and also amazing people,” Nelson said. 


Furthermore, there were many important lessons that the students learned throughout this past marching season. 


“You get out of it what you put in and it’s not enough just to want it, you have to work for it,” Wykoff said. 


With a successful season behind them, the Lebanon Trail Band has many years ahead of them to look forward to. 


“I hope we continue to build off of this year. I see their success this year really as a result of a two-year push and the amount of progress that we’ve made in the past two marching seasons is astronomical,” Wykoff said. “I hope that in the future the returning members can remember the lessons from the past two years and build on that, taking it even further and increasing what we’re able to do on the field.”