Cove to host regional band contest

By Deborah Kelley

Special to Leader-Press


The annual UIL Region 8 Band High School 5A-6A Concert and Sight Reading Contest will take place today and tomorrow, April 11-12 at the Lea Ledger Auditorium in Copperas Cove. Tony Chapa, Copperas Cove ISD Director of Bands, and his staff and students will host this two-day event. Twenty-eight area high school bands are expected to participate including Killeen, Temple, Waco, Belton, Corsicana, and Copperas Cove.

This UIL contest is comprised of two parts; a stage performance and a sight reading performance. Bands are judged in each performance area.

Each band in this contest must select three pieces to play in its stage performance. One selection must be a march. The other two selections are chosen from the UIL Prescribed Music List, a list of appropriate band pieces categorized by level of difficulty. Each band enters the contest as either Varsity, Non-Varsity, or Sub Non-Varsity. Three judges will critique each band, giving written feedback on various aspects of performance including balance, intonation, and musicality.  Scores are posted after each performance with bands hoping to receive a Superior rating of “1” from each judge.

Following the stage performance, each band goes directly into the Copperas Cove High School band hall for the Sight Reading Contest. Students are given a piece of music that they have never seen before. Their directors have a pre-determined amount of time to verbally explain the music by bringing attention to rhythm patterns, key changes, dynamic markings, and tempo changes. After the verbal instruction period, the band then plays the music with their director conducting. There are three judges who individually critique each band on its ability to play this sight reading piece, giving each band a rating.

All three bands from Copperas Cove High School will perform at this two-day event and have been working since February on their individual contest selections. The CCHS Concert Band, directed by Garrett Tagliabue, will perform on stage at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 11.

“I am very excited for our UIL performance and have the utmost confidence in my band’s success,” Tagliabue said.

Later that same day, the CCHS Symphonic Band, directed by Nancy Norris, will perform at 6:15 p.m. The CCHS Wind Ensemble, directed by Tony Chapa, will have its turn on stage on Wednesday, April 12, at 5:20 pm.  

For senior clarinet player Kameron Gaskin, this contest is the culmination of his high school band career.

“This will be the last time that I get to perform contest music as a student. I’m going to the University of North Texas to study music education,” Gaskin said. “The next time I’m on stage for this contest will be as a band director.”  

This event will take place at the Lea Ledger Auditorium, 400 S. 25th Street, Copperas Cove. The public may attend both the concert and sight reading contests. According to UIL rules, unauthorized video or audio recording is NOT permitted during the performances. This event is free and open to the public.

Copperas Cove non-varsity performs at 6:15 p.m. on Tuesday, with varsity performing at 5:20 p.m. on Wednesday.

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