Band, Choir, Orchestra receive all ones at state large group music contest


Brittani Park

Large group music contest took place on April 24 in Colby. All music groups received solid ones from every judge.

State large group music contest took place in Colby, KS on April 24 after being postponed from April 11. All music students traveled to compete and received all ones from judges.

“Obviously I’m really proud of our students that all their hard work is paying off,” instructor Alex Underwood said. “It’s nice to be recognized for that, but I also realize Hays High is a big fish in a little pond. The effort we have to put in in getting a one is very different than the effort that a smaller school has to put in.”

Chamber Singers and Concert Choir received all ones from all three judges, along with the Band, conducted by instructor Matthew Rome, and Orchestra, conducted by instructor Joan Crull.

“I was very proud of the orchestra, how they played and how they behaved,” Crull said. “Getting all ones is just frosting on the cake. I usually don’t put much emphasis on ratings. It’s more the journey of music making to get to a performance that counts.”

Although receiving a one means a superior performance with only minor errors, Underwood doesn’t believe it’s the best way to judge the skills of high school musical groups.

“It feels good we get to hang two more plaques on our wall and keeping with our long tradition of success and excellence,” Underwood said. “I also feel like it can do a disservice. It’s literally about checking boxes. Music education in small schools, 3A and smaller, is a very different feel. It’s something contest doesn’t suit. I feel like they need a different kind of metric.”