West students accepted into SEIBA honor band


Maggie Oates

Top: Freshman Matt Reis-Tuba, Junior William Zogg- Saxaphone Bottom: Freshman Chase Bruns- percussion, Sophomore Danielle Stevens- clarinet, Sophomore Michael Hill- percussion

Danielle Stevens, Managing Editor

South East Iowa Band Association [SEIBA] has been around since the late 1960s. SEIBA is an honor band that selects students from junior high, and high schools that meet the superior playing criteria as determined by professional judges.

There is a concert band and a jazz band students can try out for. Five West students were accepted into the concert band and one was accepted into the jazz band.

The students that were accepted played in a concert that was held at Iowa City West High on Jan. 20 to showcase the talent.

“I have been associated with this band for six years,” band director Maggie Oates said.

Auditions were held in Fairfield, Iowa at Fairfield High School on Jan. 6. The students in the Davenport Community School District who  auditioned met up in the West High parking lot where they loaded the charter buses at 6 a.m. nine West students auditioned.

“I was excited because I made this band [SEIBA] after I didn’t make all-state this year,” junior William Zogg said.

The people who make it into the band means that they are capable of demonstrating the aptitude needed for the SEIBA program.

After the day was over, six out of nine were accepted: freshman Matt Reis and Chase Bruns, sophomores Michael Hill and Danielle Stevens, junior William Zogg, and senior Sophie Buckley.

“I felt so elated to be there because I didn’t make it last year,” Hill said.

The SEIBA concert band audition for brass and woodwind instruments consisted of: a solo of the student’s choosing, a few lines from two songs the students are assigned, and ended with scales. Percussion auditions have to tune their instrument and play scales as well.

If the judge wants to hear a certain number of students again, they get called back to the same room they auditioned in, but at different times. The judge will decide if a student is up to the standards of being in this band and whether or not they will accept them.

The jazz band auditions have a diverse process. There are specific instruments allowed These are the same instruments one would see in a regular jazz band.

During the audition, students play their chromatic scale, improvise a solo, and sight-read a music piece. The jazz band auditions usually do not get callbacks, they are accepted right then and there.

It is a long process for judges since there are a large amount of students that audition. Musicians waited to find out if they were accepted, some of the more large amounts of instruments waited the entire day.

Judges put students in specific chair placements based on skill. First chair means that the musician exceeds the standards.

“I was really excited because me being first chair is an accomplishment,” Reis said.

Throughout the day, the band rehearsed for six hours with a few ten minute breaks and only had an hour for lunch. The day ended at 6 p.m.

Tonight, the entire band including the people that were accepted into SEIBA is playing at the girl’s basketball game at 7:00pm.

On March 3, SEIBA will be hosting a jazz festival at Iowa City West high. All the schools that are participating will be playing at times, all those times haven’t came out yet.