By Baylor PR Intern Katy Durham
Junior French horn player AJ Watson is being honored as the first Midway High School Band student in a decade to be selected as a Texas Music Educators Association All-State Musician.
This is AJ’s first time to perform as a member of a TMEA All-State organization. She is also the first Midway Band student to receive this recognition since Midway High School entered the 6A classification.
She began the process of being chosen for this distinction last fall, along with over 50,000 other students across Texas who entered the TMEA All-State competitions at the district level. AJ also moved on to compete at the regional and area rounds.
During these auditions individual musicians perform selected music for a panel of judges, who rank each instrument or voice part. Based on these rankings, students from 33 TMEA regions are selected to advance and compete against other students in their TMEA area. The musicians who rank the highest from the eight TMEA area competitions are honored as members of a TMEA All-State music group.
AJ is one of 1,800 musicians selected in the band division, and one of 42 students chosen for 6A French horn in 2021. Recognition as a member of the TMEA All-State Band is the highest honor a Texas music student can receive.
Considering the unique challenges this year brought, earning this honor is a testament to the commitment and dedication that ongoing participation in a music program encourages. Due to the impacts of the pandemic, TMEA will not host an All-State performance event this year.
As a musician in the Midway High School Wind Ensemble, AJ is under the direction of Pam Hyatt, Director of Midway Bands and a member of TMEA. AJ also studies privately with Dr. Kim Hagelstein, French Horn professor at Tarleton State University. AJ is the child of Clint and Josephine Watson.
About the Texas Music Educators Association:
The Texas Music Educators Association is an organization of over 13,000 school music educators who have worked to ensure the excellence of music education for all Texas students for over 100 years. TMEA sponsors the Texas All-State audition process to promote students’ dedication to their musical knowledge and skill and to encourage educators to support their students in this development. To learn more about TMEA visit https://www.tmea.org/.