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Panther Chorale & Concert Orchestra prepare for UIL Non-Varsity Competition! (January, 2006)

Four Pioneer Heritage Middle School performing ensembles are preparing for this March’s UIL Choir & Orchestra competitions under the direction of Dr. Priscilla Holt. “Supreme preparation is our motto,” said Dr. Holt. “We are taking our lead from the Winter Olympics in Torino. We are only as good as our preparation,” she said.

Student leadership is being provided by PHMS 2005-2006 All-Region Orchestra & Choir winners: Kristin Waymel, Ajani Brown, Patricia Holt, Brittany Thompson, Julia Prince, Kelsey Hawter, Jourdan Kolb and Kerri Matulis. Master teachers will also be working with small groups in preparation for this event. In January, Dr. Holt has arranged for nationally renowned vocal pedagogue, Joan Wall, to work with the choirs on diction; Former University of Michigan professor Nina Deveritch-Smith will be working the PHMS cellists: Julia Prince, Isaiah Jones, Carson Dorsey and Matthew Glasthal; TWU professor of violin & viola Cathy Richardson will be working with all upper strings, while Nathan Kwaller is fine tuning the bassists: Justin McFarland and Alex Nelson.

“I am trying to impress upon the students that although perfection is something we strive for, preparation is the key to success, we need to be supremely prepared,” Dr. Holt commented. “In middle school, students often see things as only “black & white, bad or good. Conversely, we need to focus our time and energy on improvement.” Dr. Holt acknowledges that she does not prepare the students alone, “I am in-debited to our private teachers, assistant student teacher Adam Delka and the unwavering support of administration and parents.” For those at PHMS, the preparation for their “Olympic Games” has begun!