By KATE COLEMAN
The competition was tough.
Only 160 seventh-, eighth- and ninth-graders in the entire state - out of the 1,200 who tried out - made the All-State Junior Chorus. Only 90 of 1,100 who tried qualified for the All-State Junior Band. A mere 190 10th-, 11th- and 12th-grade voices were good enough to make the All-State Senior Chorus.
The students got the music they had to learn a few weeks before the November auditions in Frederick, Md.
One by one they tried out.
The choral students were required to sing two songs - alone. One was accompanied, one a cappella. They also had to prove their music-reading abilities, clapping out the rhythm on one piece of music, singing the notes of another they were handed.
Fifteen Washington County students survived the cuts. They will perform at the Maryland Music Educators Association Annual conference next weekend.
They worked hard to qualify. They're still working hard and they are facing a weekend filled with rehearsals before their Saturday, Feb. 23, and Sunday, Feb. 24, performances in Baltimore, joining their voices and those of their instruments with those of kids from all over the state.