17 students score spots in All-Region orchestra


Michael Martin

All-Region violinist sophomore Sophie Lin practices during class. Lin is among 38 other Redhawks that competed with over 900 students for spots in the All-Region orchestra.

Lucas Barr, Editor-in-chief

Standing alone and performing for hidden judges, 39 orchestra students spent their Saturday auditioning for the TMEA Region 24 All-Region orchestra. With 17 students having been selected for the Region orchestras, their focus has shifted to the Region concert on Saturday Dec. 14 and preparing for the All-State round on Saturday Nov. 9.

“We’re in the most competitive region in the state with Frisco and Plano, so the fact that we had 17 students make it is a real, true accomplishment,” orchestra director Julie Blackstock said. “I think it says a lot about the students and their ability and determination and talent.”

Returning All-State violinist, senior Geethika Bonthala is striving for a spot on the state level again, after being the sixth highest scoring violinist on Saturday.

“I’m really glad that I was able to make region and advance to the next round, especially since it’s my last opportunity to participate in such a high level ensemble such as region,” Bonthaka said. “As for my All-State preparation, I am working on the musicality aspect of the excerpts, as this is hopefully what will set me apart from others. I would like to make the top All-State group if possible, but I would be just as grateful for an opportunity to make any of the ensembles.”

Freshman violinist Helena Song is practicing for the All-Region concert the concert after making the orchestra at her first high school audition.

“I just tried to practice as much as possible and prepared myself by playing more in front of other people,” Song said. “I’m looking forward to feeling like it’s a professional orchestra. I also have a lot of friends with other high schools that made it, so I can’t wait to play with them.”

The orchestra had a quick turn around from the auditions as they performed their annual fall concert Monday night.

With it being the last “first concert” for the program’s 21 seniors, violinist Anna Ramasamy embraced the performance and plans on making the most of her final year.

“I really enjoyed our little senior meeting before the concert, and talking to everybody, reflecting over the past three years,” Ramasamy said. “I save all the programs from all of the concerts, and it’s like a symbol of how much we’ve worked and how we came together to create something bigger than ourselves. I’m really excited to see what sort of music will play. I feel like everybody’s very committed and wants to push themselves and get better.”