Band stars shine at All-State competition

Andy Kimball
Junior Editor

Band color
Senior Cullen Drissell plays trumpet in the band room during fifth hour. Drissell was named fifth chair in the Missouri All-State Jazz Band. (Photo by Andy Kimball)

Five band members made either an All-State or an All-State Honorable mention band. Two members were also named Alternates for the All-State Jazz band.

Seniors Sam Syberg and Eli Pandolfi were both named first chair in the All-State Orchestra at oboe and french horn. Pandolfi was also first chair last year.

Junior piano player Rachel Tripp said, “I wasn’t that nervous (at the auditions). Then I went to All-State. I realized that this is kind of a big deal because there was a whole bunch of people and not a lot of people make it in jazz piano.”

Band Director Kevin Cole said, “Our band is consistent (in having All-State band members). This year was about average for us… Our best year was 11 people.”

Cole added, “In Jazz band only 18 kids get selected to go to State.”
The auditions were Dec. 5, at Hickman High School in Columbia.

Senior trumpet player Cullen Drissell said, “The auditions were in Columbia and kids all around Missouri (from All-Suburban) came and waited in the cafeteria. The cafeteria is also the only room you can warm up in, so it was pretty crazy…For the audition you would go to the room you were auditioning and sign up on piece of paper for a specific time and then that’s where you would go and audition. I warmed up in the cafeteria before and went to the room 15 minutes before and waited until they called me in.”

Tripp added, “Six people made it to call backs, and I didn’t know when I was going to be called back, so I sat with (sophomore) Jack Snelling and waited for two hours between the auditions.”

Syberg did not expect to be named to the All-State Orchestra after being an alternate on the All-State band last year.
“I wasn’t expecting it at all…I was so shocked when they called my name (at auditions). It didn’t feel real,” said Syberg.
For Pandolfi, already having been in the All-State Orchestra made the experience different.

Pandolfi said, “The process was the same. There was more pressure on me this year by making All-State last year. I didn’t want to regress from last year at all. It was a pretty stressful day.”

Senior Trumpet players Jack Killeen and Cullen Drissell were both named to the All-State Jazz Band, Killeen as second Alternate and Drissell as fifth chair.

On piano, Tripp was named alternate in the All-State Jazz Band and Snelling was named first chair in the All-State Honorable Mention Jazz Band.

Sophomore Myah Frank was named seventh chair in the All-State Honorable Mention Band.

All-State Bands and the All-State Orchestra members will participate in the Missouri Music Educators Association Conference in the Lake of the Ozarks at Tan-Tara resort to perform on Jan. 27-30.

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