Solo and Ensemble students shine


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SOLO AND ENSEMBLE. Students across the high school and junior high performed on Saturday. Each student receives a score sheet and individual comments from each judge.“We got a score of 1, it was really rewarding” said Patrick Ma, 10.

Every year in late January, the Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) provides an opportunity for soloists and ensembles to be adjudicated for their performance. This year, Solo and Ensemble took place at Elder High School on Sat., Jan. 26.

Students typically begin picking the music in December and start to practice in January. Musicians can either perform a solo with or without piano accompaniment, and ensembles can range from two to five players. Orchestra, band and choir students all take part.

High school participants must choose from a provided list of music while Junior High students can play whatever they choose, with difficulty levels divided into A, B, and C.

Registering as a soloist requires an $18 fee, and the ensemble fee of $23 is typically divided amongst the players of the ensemble.

Each group or soloist is given a rating of one-three, with one being proficient, two having small mistakes but overall good performance, and three is lacking in several areas. Most Sycamore performers bring home ones and twos.

“I got a high score of one. It was really fun, and they provided lots of delicious food; the layout was very confusing and it was very crowded, so having a big instrument was hard to move around with,” said Madison Crouch, 9.

The performances are open to the public, with friends and family as well as music directors encouraged to support musicians. However, any type of recording results in disqualification.

 “I thought it was kind of cool to take time practicing with our ensembles to prepare for something that was quite different from what we do in orchestra,” said Patrick Ma, 10.