The Killian Wind Ensemble earns Sweepstakes at UIL Contest.

The Killian Middle School Wind Ensemble has earned the Sweepstakes award at UIL Concert and Sight-Reading Evaluation in return to live competition. Under the direction of Jenna Lenhard, the band earned unanimous Superior ratings from all judges for both the stage and sight-reading portions of the contest.

“I am incredibly proud of these students,” said Jenna Lenhard, assistant director of bands at Killian Middle School. “None of the students who performed today have ever performed on a stage or competed live.”

The Wind Ensemble has earned 11 consecutive Sweepstakes awards. To earn a UIL Sweepstakes award, a Division 1, or Superior rating, must be awarded on stage and in sight-reading.

“The kids are amazing, and I am so proud of their hard work,” said Trevor Ousey, director of bands at Killian. “This group played music above and beyond the minimum and did so at a high level.”

The award is also a first for Lenhard, who is in her first year of teaching.

The Sweepstakes Award is the highest honor a Middle School band can receive. This is also Lenhard’s first Sweepstakes award.

“I am thrilled to be a part of this amazing program,” said Lenhard. “I could not have asked for a more memorable first year of teaching.”

The Killian Band would like to thank the Hebron high school band staff led by Andy Sealy, private lesson teachers, Amanda Drinkwater, Director of Fine Arts for Lewisville ISD, and Dr. Tina Krol, principal of Killian Middle School, for their continued support.

“We also had a lot of tremendous clinicians and mentors along the way,” added Ousey. “I want to personally thank John Benzer, Melodianne Mallow, and Marty Nelson, who continue to work with the students in our pursuit of excellence.”

The Killian Wind Ensemble will finish the year with auditions, a solo contest, and spring performances.