For the first time in school history, the Tomball Memorial High School Roarin' Blue Band competed at the State Marching Band Competition in San Antonio Nov. 5. The band performed very well placing 17th out of 28 bands in the preliminary competition. The top ten bands advanced to the finals. Although they did not compete in the final round, the experience encouraged them to plan for the future.
"Our students and staff have worked extremely hard to advance to the state competition," band director Andy Easton said. "This has been our goal since our school opened three years ago. We'll continue to work hard to compete at the state level again in the future."
The band qualified to compete at the state contest, after placing third at the Area F Marching Band Contest held in Galena Park last month.
"The feedback from the area judges was very helpful. We continued to rehearse to make the show even better," Easton said.
Their performance at the state contest was titled Battleship, which featured music narration, props, and visual movements that helped depict the classic Battleship game. Musical selections featured "Day of Judgment" from Mozart's Requiem, "Panis Angeli-cus," and the fourth movement from Tchaikov-
sky's Symphony No. 2.
More than 200 dedicated band members practiced nearly every day for three months learning the show routines. Easton not only credited hard work for this accomplishment, but he also stressed that the band students transitioning from Willow Wood Junior High to Tomball Memorial High were prepared to join the high school band.
"Our students come to us from Willow Wood as amazing musicians and they already have a great work ethic," Easton said. "We wouldn't be as successful without the training our students received at the junior high level."
Tomball ISD has a history of competing at the State Marching Band Com-
petition. In 1993, the Tomball High School Cougar Pride Band placed sixth out of 14 bands in the preliminary competition, missing the finals by only one point. The Tomball Memorial High School Roarin' Blue Band was honored to continue that legacy by reaching the state finals.
The journey to perform in San Antonio marked the first time the Roarin' Blue Band competed for the state championship.
"This would not be possible without our masterful band directors and the support of our parents and administrators," Easton said. "Then you add in the great kids that we get to teach every day. That makes for a great team."