Hannah Bryant is quite talented as a junior oboe and marimba player in the Stephenville High School Yellow Jacket Band and has qualified for the state solo competition taking place in May.
Bryant decided she wanted to play the oboe in sixth grade after watching the high school band play for them.
“Each instrument would play and you would just listen to what it sounded like,” she said. “I remember the oboe played and I told my friend, ‘I want to play that, it sounds so beautiful.’”
Bryant played to oboe through junior high, but had to change things up when she got to high school because oboe players are unable to march with their instrument.
“They told us it’s because the mouthpiece is very fragile so you can’t march with it. We had to either play the saxophone, be in percussion or the colorguard and so Mr. (Michel) Wimberely was really nice and said he would teach me how to be in percussion,” she said. “At first it was hard because I had to learn a whole new instrument coming into high school, but now I really love it and love being in percussion.”
Last year Bryant competed with her oboe during concert season but competed with the marimba this year, which was a good decision.
“I played a marimba solo and I’m going to state with that at the end of May,” Bryant said. “I’m now practicing every day. At the previous solo and ensemble competition the judges give you a critique so I’ve just been fixing what they told me to fix.”
Currently Bryant isn’t in any kind of leadership role in the band, but is thinking about auditioning for the front ensemble section leader position next school year.
“I didn’t really have time to be in a leadership role this year, so next year I will try,” she said. “We’re like a family in here and so I would like to be a leader and show people what to do.”
Since Bryant will be a senior next year she offers some advice for incoming freshman band members.
“Never ever be late. Ever. That’s probably the worst thing you could do,” she said with a laugh. “Also, just really get to know people and learn from them and if you ever need advice go to an upper classman. Make sure to get good sleep, don’t stay up all night and practice your instrument.”
As far as her future, Bryant said she would like to attend Texas Tech University and pursue a nursing degree.
“As an incoming freshman they lay out all the endorsements for you and show you which classes you can take and so my mom said I should try health science, so I tried it and I just love it,” Bryant said. “It’s really easy to learn for me and I like having one-on-one time with people.”