Lake Travis HS band, choir, orchestra students earn All-State honors

The notable talents of five Lake Travis High School students have earned each of them a place on the 2017 All-State band, choir and orchestra as determined by the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA).

According to TMEA, All-State is the highest honor a Texas music student can receive.  Approximately 1,600 students were selected through a process that began in the fall of 2016 with over 64,000 students from around the state vying for the honor to perform in one of 13 ensembles (bands, choirs and orchestras).

 (left to right)  Grace Ward -  1st Chair Jazz Guitar, TMEA  All-State   Jazz Ensemble 1;  Aly Ruiz  - Piccolo, TMEA All-State Band;   Jade Milam  - 7th Chair Alto 1, TMEA All-State Women's Choir;  Abigail Storm  - 2nd Chair Alto 2, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir; and  Molly Snodgrass  - 2nd Chair Soprano 1, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir

(left to right) Grace Ward - 1st Chair Jazz Guitar, TMEA All-State Jazz Ensemble 1; Aly Ruiz - Piccolo, TMEA All-State Band; Jade Milam - 7th Chair Alto 1, TMEA All-State Women's Choir; Abigail Storm - 2nd Chair Alto 2, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir; and Molly Snodgrass - 2nd Chair Soprano 1, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir

  Grace Ward:   1st Chair Jazz Guitar, TMEA   All-State Jazz Ensemble 1

Grace Ward: 1st Chair Jazz Guitar, TMEA All-State Jazz Ensemble 1

Grace Ward has been playing guitar since she was nine years old. She also plays the double bass and sings.  Grace is also the first female to hold the 1st Chair, Jazz Guitar in TMEA history. She has many favorite musicians ranging from Esperanza Spalding to Stevie Wonder.  She is also inspired by her teachers and mentors.  Grace plans to study either jazz guitar or classical bass performance at the college/university level after graduation.

Anna Macias directs the orchestra program at Lake Travis High School.

I have never met anyone who wouldn’t say they have benefited from a fine arts program, whether it be heightened work ethic, organizational skills, close friends, or just a life-long hobby.
— Grace Ward

Aly Ruiz has been playing piccolo for seven years and also plays the flute.  Some of her favorite musicians include Amy Porter, Helen Blackburn and The Civil Wars.  Aly plans to study youth development and/or education after graduation.

Richard Hicks directs the band program at Lake Travis High School.

[Playing an instrument] allows me to express emotion in an extremely personal way.
— Aly Ruiz
  Aly Ruiz : 1st Chair Picolo,  TMEA All-State  6A Symphonic Band

Aly Ruiz: 1st Chair Picolo, TMEA All-State 6A Symphonic Band


  Jade Milam:  7th Chair Alto 1, TMEA All-State Women's Choir

Jade Milam: 7th Chair Alto 1, TMEA All-State Women's Choir

Jade Milam has been training as a singer since age six.  She started participating in school choir in the 6th grade.  Jade also plays piano.  She enjoys a variety of musical styles from classic to modern.  Some of her favorite musicians include classical composers Brahms and Bach and the modern band Fun.  Jade plans to attend college and major in either musical theater or vocal performance.

[Fine Arts] provide a creative outlet for students to express themselves and to escape from daily stresses... while doing something they love.
— Jade Milan

Abigail Storm has been singing since age three.  She also plays the guitar and piano.  Some of Abigail's favorite musicians include Speed of Sound and Gladys Knight. Abigail plans to continue to sing after graduation and pursue a career in education.

[Fine Arts] gives me something to work for. It also give me great pride to represent my school.
— Abigail Storm
  Abigail Storm:  2nd Chair Alto 2, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir

Abigail Storm: 2nd Chair Alto 2, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir


  Molly Snodgras  s:  2nd Chair Soprano 1, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir

Molly Snodgrass: 2nd Chair Soprano 1, TMEA All-State Mixed Choir

Molly Snodrass has performed in professional choirs since age five.  One of Molly's favorite musicians is Reheé Fleming.  Molly plans to attend the Boston Conservatory and major in vocal performance.

Kelan Latimer directs the choir program at Lake Travis High School.

The [Fine Arts] program helps students express their feelings... and helps students find a talent or passion for the arts that they might not have know that they had.
— Molly Snodgrass

The students will perform February 11 at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio during the TMEA annual convention, the nation’s largest gathering of music educators.  TMEA is an association of more than 12,000 school music educators dedicated to promoting excellence in music education.