Seven Viera High band students selected to All-State


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Viera High School had seven band members selected to the All-State Ensemble this year. Pictured from left to right are Teresa Vu, Anna Chong, Nicole Kloner, Alec McDaniel, Max Reed and Trevor Frier. Sarah Biesack is not pictured.

Carl Kotala

It was the news he and the rest of his Viera High School bandmates had been waiting for.

But when it came time to announce who had been selected All-State, senior Ryan Frier was home sick.

“Someone texted me that I made it and I was freaking out,” Frier said. “I didn’t know it was that day. I was sick.

“That was a good day. I wasn’t sick for too long after that. I’m pretty sure that helped.”

Frier was one of seven Hawks selected to this year’s Florida All-State Ensembles, which consists of select band, orchestra and choir members from around the state. Those selected will perform a concert in Tampa in January during the Florida Music Educators Conference.

Freshman Sarah Biesack (violin) was selected for the Concert Orchestra. Junior Alec McDaniel (oboe and English horn) was picked for the Symphonic Orchestra along with junior Teresa Vu (percussion).

Frier (clarinet) and fellow senior Max Reed (clarinet) are part of the Symphonic Band. And in the Concert Band, it will be sophomore Nicole Kloner (flute) and freshman Anna Chong (flute).

The audition process for All-State is both lengthy and strenuous.

“We have to play all 12 major scales, and there are two different excerpts — a fast, technical one and a slow, lyrical one,” Reed said. “We get the excerpts in May, so we have the summer to work on them. There’s also a sight reading.”

A recorded audition session was held at Edgewood High School in September and sent off to judges.

“When they’re judging your audio tape, there are four rounds,” Reed said. “They focus on different things like right notes, your musicality and then your tone.

“They keep narrowing down the 700 clarinets that tried out until they get down to about 20.”

Frier and Reed said they are looking forward to the concert.

“After I made it, I looked it up and now my excitement is going through the roof,” Reed said. “It’s going to be really fun. We’re playing this one piece called, ‘Come Sunday.’

“It’s more of a jazz piece, but it’s very exhilarating. It’s very exciting.”