Porter Spartan band advances to state; goes to Alamodome to perform

Porter High School band performs in competition.

Porter High School band performs in competition.

Samantha Cerda, Staff Writer

Porter Spartan Band will compete in the UIL Texas State Marching Competition in San Antonio for the 3rd competition cycle in a row. On October 23, the band competed in the 2021 Lonestar Preview marching contest, where they competed against a number of 6A schools. The band took first place in four categories for their class: general effect, musical performance, visual performance, outstanding percussion, and first place in their class. The band’s biggest achievement, however, came when they were selected as one of the top 10 finalists in the competition, placing sixth out of the remaining 6A bands.

¨It was a different experience, like going from our BOA competition and losing and then at Lonestar we went and placed finals, beating out the 6A’s. After all the hard work we definitely felt more confident and accomplished coming in the next week,” sophomore and trombone player Imani White said.

On October 16, 2021, the band also competed in the UIL Region 33 5a marching contest and received straight ones throughout the charts giving them the opportunity to head to the Area I marching contest. The band has been working extremely hard these past four months to get to the point they’re at right now. Parents, teachers, and especially the directors have done a lot to support and contribute to the band’s success. And all the time, dedication, and effort are really showing.

¨We just believe in the program, and it takes a huge amount of parental effort to make this happen. A lot of parents show up on game days and competitions because the kids just wouldn’t be able to do it all. They have enough to worry about, getting around the field plus playing their music much less having to worry about all this stuff,¨ Mr. Carter said about the parent’s incorporation and help with the band.

Band parents agree that the students win and advancement is well deserved. Even through difficulties, hardships, and an abnormal past two years with school and the world, the band members have pushed through successfully.

¨PHS Spartan band is the best organization in the whole district. This is the third consecutive trip to state. That’s very difficult to do and it’s a huge accomplishment,” said Mr. Barnhart. “Every organization in the state, nation, or even the world have difficulties coming off of this covid year, but even through all that and to end up where you left off is a huge accomplishment. There were a lot of programs that lost a lot of their momentum,”

Right before performing in the October 23 show, there was a lightning delay which setback the competition for about an hour. During the performance, the lightning alarm went off and many of the band’s props fell over. Yet the Spartan Band delivered an outstanding performance which led them to be the Area I 5a Champions. With that, the band will be advancing to State and will perform Monday, November 1, 2021, at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. The band’s work is still not done yet as now they’re shooting to get a spot as one of the top 10 bands at the UIL Texas State Marching competition. 

¨With Saturday’s performance we handled the weather and all the challenges, the weather delays, lightning strikes, and even the lightning alarm that went off during our show, everyone was being flexible and patient and feeling confident helped us survive a really tricky contest,” said Director of the Porter Spartan Band, Jimmy Nowel. “We ended being Area Champions out of it. We’re looking forward to one more successful week of practice, and we’re not just trying for finals, we’re trying to win the state marching contest.¨