Marble Falls choir students shine at contest, get ready big show


MARBLE FALLS — When Marble Falls High School choir director Bryce Gage took eight of his students to the district round of the Texas Music Educators Association’s all-state tryouts, he wasn’t sure how many — if any — would advance to the regional round.

When the judging was done, all eight advanced.

“It was pretty cool,” Gage said. “The kids did a great job, but it only gets tougher as the competition gets better and the process becomes more challenging.”

The eight students — Blaire Hambrick, Alyssa Anderson, Jordan Jones, Dale Gunlock, Emily Gunlock, Peyton Fishbeck, Anna Herrington and Lupita Mora — will compete in the TMEA regional round Oct. 28 at Vista Ridge High School in Cedar Park.

They earned the nod during the district competition Sept. 27.

The students must master additional materials beyond their classroom music and upcoming choir performance selections. The TMEA audition material is typically very challenging.

The materials remain the same throughout the try-out process, but judges may select different sections of each piece during the auditions. Gage said that in the upcoming region audition, judges add a new dimension by requiring a sight-reading part over a selection new to the students.

“And that counts as 20 percent of the score, so it’s pretty important,” he said.

The ultimate goal of the students is to earn a coveted spot on the TMEA All-State Choir, which performs during the organizations state meeting in February in San Antonio.

While the all-state audition process is closed to the public, the high school’s Fall Choir Concert is the exact opposite.

“All of our choirs will be there performing,” Gage said. “It’s our first big show of the year.”

The event is 7 p.m. Oct. 13 at the high school auditorium, 2101 Mustang Drive. Admission is free, but organizers are encouraging people to bring a non-perishable food item for the school’s National Honor Society’s food drive.

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