Bandtober is almost over, and it’s going out with a bang. Three important contests are happening on Saturday, but none of them are in El Paso, although they all are relatively easy drives from us.
The largest contest is the 41st annual Tournament of Bands, taking place in Aggie Memorial Stadium up in Las Cruces, while in Odessa our 6-A bands will at the UIL Area A marching contest, A little further afield is the UIL 4-A Area contest taking place in Lubbock at Lowery Field.
The Tournament of Bands will feature 28 bands and a prelims/finals format. Bands will compete in one of 4 classes based on school size and will be scored on a 200-point scale. There will be winners in each class and the top 10 high-scoring bands will advance to the finals round.
The contest starts at 9:00 in the morning with the finals round starts at 8:00 p.m. At 7:30 p.m., prior to finals, the winning bands from class C and class B- the smallest classes- will perform in exhibition.
If the winning band from either of these classes makes finals, the next highest-scoring band would perform.
Tickets for Tournament of Bands are $17 for adults all day, and $7 for students age 13 and under. They are available at the gate or online at Ticketmaster with a surcharge.
The UIL Area A 6-A contest will be held at Odessa’s Ratliff Stadium. This contest will feature 14 bands, with all six of El Paso’s large schools competing. Those bands include Americas, Coronado, Franklin, Montwood, Pebble Hills, and Socorro High Schools.
Two of the 14 bands will advance to the State contest, which for this class will take place on November 7. The first band will compete at 12:30, and finalist bands will be announced at 4:45. Finals will begin at 6:30, with the contest over at approximately 8:30 p.m. There is no admission charge to this contest.
The Area A UIL 4-A contest will take place in Lubbock. The first band steps off at 10:00 in the morning, and finalists will be announced at 3:30. Finals then begin at 5:45 and the advancing bands will be announced at 8:00.
This contest will feature 17 bands, including Mountain View and Clint High Schools. Because there is a larger pool of eligible bands at this contest, 3 bands will advance to the State marching contest. There is a $5 admission charge for all spectators at this contest.
Area A is one of 7 Areas the state is divided into for music competition. It encompasses the large areas around El Paso, Amarillo, Lubbock, Abilene, and the Midland-Odessa area as well as the surrounding environs.
These two Area contests will send bands to the State marching contest being held in San Antonio November 5-7.
Author – Lorraine Kubala
The complete schedule can be viewed on the ‘Musical Notes- The Blog’ page on Facebook.