Belton High School seniors Regan Pilgrim and Mark Morris were chosen to perform as a part of selected Texas All-State Music Ensembles at the 2017 Texas Music Educators Association Clinic and Convention held last month in San Antonio. Both students are horn players. This was Pilgrim’s second time to be selected as an all-state band member and Morris’ first.
The all-state experience made a lasting impression on the students.
"Getting to play at TMEA these past two years has been the highlight of my high school career,” Pilgrim said. “I love the challenge of the music and the resulting sound of amazing musicians."
Morris said, "The convention is a life changing experience for any musician. To be surrounded on all sides by an assortment of people just as intense and enthusiastic about music as you is an incredible feeling. That environment allows a level of expression and musicality that is simply unable to be achieved anywhere else.”
The all-state selection process is very competitive. From an initial field of 68,000 students, just 1,780 students are selected to perform in the 15 all-state ensembles including bands, orchestras and choirs. Only the top 2.6% of musicians who initially audition go on to become all-state musicians.
"It's a thrill to watch our students work with the best of the best from all over the state,” Belton band director Ed Stein said. “They are tremendous musical role models, and we are fortunate that they are setting a high standard for others to follow.”