The Alice High School marching band is competing in the UIL’s Area Marching Contest at Pharr-San Juan-Alamo Saturday for a shot at advancing to state.

Alice earned a spot at the area contest by performing in the UIL’s Region 14 Marching Contest at Calallen High School Saturday and receiving “straight ones” from three judges. The regional competition isn’t a contest against other schools. Rather, bands are rated on a rubric or a set of standards by the UIL.

Alice’s show, “Fear Of The Unknown,” is one the program has been working on and fine-tuning since August.

The makeup of the show is very challenging music, “but that’s what makes it fun,” said Alice band director Arnold Garza.

It begins with J.S. Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in d minor and then jumps directly into Berlioz’s 5th Movement of symphonie fantastique, dreams of a witches sabbath. There is a moment of clarity with the angelic music of Frank Ticheli, Angels in the architecture. The show is closed with Mussorgsky’s famous Night on Bald Mountain.

The contest Saturday consists of a preliminary performance and one in the finals. Depending on the number of bands competing, as many as six bands may be chosen to compete in the state marching contest in early November. In UIL marching band competitions, each classification has an opportunity to advance to state competition every other year. This is a Class 5A year.

The Alice High School marching band had competed at the state contest in 2007, 2009, 2011 and 2013.