The Student News Website of Susquehannock High School,   Glen Rock, Pennsylvania.

Students Audition for District Orchestra

Reagan Gorham, Reporter

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Auditions for District Orchestra, a select ensemble made up of students from seven different counties, took place last Saturday.

Of the nine students who auditioned, violin player senior Lucas Sherman and cello player senior Jacob Hebel made it in.

Sherman and Hebel participate in the District 7 Orchestra Festival at Cedar Cliff High School on February 9 and 10.

Hopeful players traveled to Dallastown High School to audition.

Orchestra teacher Zachary Levi explained how prepared the auditioners had to be.

“The students prepare one selected piece and it rotates, there’s four or five pieces that rotate so the kids aren’t doing the same thing each year. They also have to prepare scales, and be ready to sight read,” said Levi. “They go through a process where they go to one room and play their scales and do sight reading, they go to another room where they do part of a solo, and go to another room and do another part of a solo. They’re judged on tone, intonation, rhythm, musicality, and technique. They get scored on those categories, and those scores are totaled together.”

Levi described the rigorous audition process, which is different from most.

“We’re not allowed to look at the students, it’s what’s called a blind audition. Me and another judge are in one of the rooms and we face the windows or the wall and the students come in and each gets a number,” said Levi. “The proctor announces the number and the student just plays and leaves. They’re not allowed to talk, because any indication of us knowing who they are, and that shows bias.”

Sherman thought the audition was stressful this year and worried that he wasn’t prepared enough.

“It was [stressful.] All these things are going through your mind, for me especially this time around it was like, ‘Was I really prepared enough?’ So that kept going through my head and when they told us what spots we were going to be auditioning on, I realized I got one of the most challenging parts of the entire piece, and I kept on thinking, ‘Am I going to do poorly?’” said Sherman.

Sherman feels that while the audition was stressful, District Orchestra is a lot of fun.

“I get to be with a lot of my friends I never see outside of PMEA. I love orchestral music, and I think it’s preparing me for what I want to pursue in college. It’s a blast,” said Sherman.

Sherman’s goal for District orchestra this year is to make it further than Districts.

“I want to make it to states. One thing that’s fortunate is that I made it to second violin, which the music is a little bit easier, so it’s easier to progress onto regionals and states. I’m hoping with that I’ll be able to advance on to the all-state festival,” said Sherman.

Students are judged at the District festival on how well they play, and based on their performance, they can advance to regionals or even the all-state festival.

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The Student News Website of Susquehannock High School,   Glen Rock, Pennsylvania.
Students Audition for District Orchestra