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The Beckendorff Junior High Symphony Orchestra recently received an invitation to perform at the Midwest Clinic in Chicago, IL, won Texas State Honor Orchestra at the junior high level, and performed at the Texas Music Educators Association convention in San Antonio.

The BDJH Orchestra program began in 2004 with the opening of the school and was under the direction of Matthew Porter. Since that time, the program has grown from 64 string players in 2004 to a current enrollment of 240 string players from grades six through eight. The orchestra program is composed of three beginner orchestra periods, four performing groups, and the full orchestra, which meets outside of the school day. Every orchestra from Beckendorff has earned the sweepstakes award at the UIL Concert and Sight Reading Contest since the school’s opening.

The varsity orchestras from Beckendorff have been selected twice by the Foundation for Music Education as a National Winner in the Mark of Excellence/National Orchestra Honors project. In addition, the Honor orchestra from Beckendorff has placed in the finals for the TMEA Honor Orchestra Competition the last three years running and most recently was named the 2012 Texas Honor Orchestra.

The full orchestra, or Beckendorff Symphony, was formed in 2007 and currently meets only once a week after school hours to rehearse. Since that first year, the Symphony Orchestra has placed in the finals of the TMEA Honor Orchestra Competition three times in the last four years and has consistently earned top honors and awards at contests. The Beckendorff Symphony Orchestra is under the direction of Matthew Porter and Susan Steber with assistant directors Shaun Hillen and Darlene Blose. Please mention you found this on www.KatyMagazine.com.

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