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11 Jazz Band Students qualify for Area Jazz Band from WHS

Kenya Menjivar
Waxahachie Daily Light

From The Waxahachie High School Jazz Band, 11 students qualified to advance to the Area Jazz Band and tape for the Texas All-State Jazz Ensemble later this month.

"I am excited and proud of the students for their accomplishments. They accepted the challenge back in May and worked diligently through the summer to prepare their music to be excellent," said Band Director Richard Armstrong.

Area Jazz Band qualifiers line up for a picture.

The Jazz Band students participated in the Region 20 Virtual Jazz Audition on Oct. 3. In total, 20 members auditioned for the Region 20 audition.

According to Armstrong, 15 students earned a chair in one of two bands, 11 earned an Area chair and record for state at the end of the month, and five students were 1st chair out of 10 possible 1st chairs.

“We are thrilled to congratulate the students listed below for earning a position in the Region Jazz bands!” shared Waxahachie High School through social media. 

The 11 students who qualified to advance to Area are listed below:

1st Band (Area Qualifiers, Recording for All-State)

Dhruval Rangrej - Alto Sax, 2nd Chair

Lilyanna Armstrong - Tenor Sax, 2nd Chair

Nick Dorazil - Bari Sax, 1st Chair

Charlie Autry - Trumpet, 1st Chair

Ethan Brown - Trumpet, 2nd Chair

Camden Williams - Trumpet, 3rd Chair

Austin Smith - Trumpet, 5th Chair

Diego Ramos - Trombone, 1st Chair

Jair Gonzales - Trombone, 3rd Chair

Cade Andrews - Bass Trombone,1st Chair

Nick Evans - Drums, 1st Chair

Additionally, 2nd band was also recognized, with the students listed below:

Ben Sambell - Alto Sax, 1st Chair

Skyler Melin - Tenor Sax, 1st Chair

Natalie Auvenshine - Trumpet, 4th Chair

Sam Burkhalter - Bass Guitar, 1st Chair

"Their accomplishment confirms that our program promotes individual competition and at the same time develops strong jazz pedagogical skill sets," stated Armstrong,

The Jazz Band is currently made up of 36 students in one of two jazz bands at the high school.

Additionally, Armstrong shared what he's most excited for this season: He wants to continue to develop strong musicians with a desire to play jazz at a professional level, strong soloists that desire to become viable artists, and two big bands that can perform three-hour-long sets.