Three members of the MacArthur Marching Band made it into the Texas All-State Band, the highest honor a Texan High School and member can receive. Stephen Buley, sophomore, Jillian Kouzel, sophomore, and Katie Williams, junior have the honor of playing before thousands of attendee of the Texas Music Educators Association Convention.
The musicians received their music in July, pre-selected pieces to perfect over months of hard work, progressing from district, to area, to region before being accepted into the All-State band.
Stephen, who plays the French horn, went in to the Areas competition as a underdog. “I’d been beaten before by three other kids, so I was kinda watching out for them,” said the sophomore.
“I couldn’t tell who was the better out of all of them [the people in my room],” Jillian Kouzel said. “We all had the same mistakes, nobody played it perfectly. It was nerve-wrecking, I didn’t think I was going to win. It was kinda scary,” Kouzel said, the other sophomore in the group and an oboe player.
It’s unusual for two sophomores to make All-State. Traditionally, juniors and seniors are the ones that make it. But junior Katie Williams, flute player doesn’t mind. “I think it’s great they made it in,” Williams said. “They worked hard, I’m very proud of them, they’re wonderful musicians.”
The three still need to audition for chair position, and learn new pieces for performance. But they’re guaranteed a position in the performance.