Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

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January 10, 2014

Numbers up for PV band honors — The numbers are way up there for Pauls Valley’s school band as it sends several members to an all-district event set for this weekend.

In fact, local band director Drew Etheredge is pretty pleased with how many of his students grades 6 through 12 earned the district honors.

“We had 41 kids from Pauls Valley who made all-district,” Etheredge said.

“That’s a pretty good number. It’s tremendous for a school our size.”

It was just a few weeks ago, in early November to be exact, when auditions were held in Ada for the all-district honor bands.

Those auditions were not required as band students voluntarily signed up to prepare and compete in the event.

In the end three different honor bands were chosen — one for the sixth and seventh grades, another for the eighth and ninth grades and the band for grades 10 through 12.

“Our kids really are doing well,” Etheredge said. “We have a lot of talented kids who have worked very hard.

“They’ve worked hard for a lot of days, here after school, to get prepared for the auditions,” he said.

“The kids have really represented our school and our community.”

The band director stresses earning a spot on one of these honor bands is not so easy.

For one, there are 29 schools in Pauls Valley’s district with several being much larger.

That results in quite a few students, maybe as many as 60 from all those schools, competing for as few as nine spots for one particular instrument.

“That’s a lot of students competing for just a few spots in these honor bands,” Etheredge said.

“It’s a very competitive thing. They’re competing against students from 29 schools.

“For each instrument they’re competing for a small amount of spots.”

Here in Pauls Valley the 41 students selected for all-district comes from around 130 overall that participate in band starting in the sixth grade.

Those students who were chosen for the all-district bands are scheduled to take part in rehearsals throughout Friday and Saturday morning, Jan. 10-11, before it’s show time for all three age groups.

Admission is free for the start of the all district bands’ performances starting at 2 p.m. Saturday at the auditorium of the Hallie-Brown-Ford Fine Arts Center on the East Central University campus in Ada.

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