With 16 Total All-State Finalists, Westwood Orchestra Musicians Make Up Largest Number of Qualifiers in Texas


Westwood Orchestra

16 Westwood orchestra students qualified to participate in the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) All-State Clinic and Convention in February. Reaching the highest honor in scholastic music, this group makes up the largest number of finalists from a single school. Photo courtesy of Westwood Orchestra.

Catharine Li, Horizon Editor-in-Chief

Scenes from the Grisham Middle School gym on a weekend in late October revealed anxiety almost tangible, suspending the flurry of notes and encouraging words clinging to each student when called up to record their audition material. Celebrating the end of a nearly six-month preparation period, results for the Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA) All-State Orchestra Clinic and Convention were released on Sunday, Nov. 13. 

With 16 total students set to travel to San Antonio in February, this group of musicians makes up the largest share of qualifiers from a single school, an honor earned for the second consecutive year. Adding to a storied history of program excellence, such consistent success distinguishes Westwood even within Central Texas, an area that continues to foster high-level involvement in music education. 

“Every year, over 70,000 band, choir, and orchestra students from across the state enter the All-State process, of which only two percent are selected into the Texas All-State Band, Choir, or Orchestra,” Orchestra Director Mr. Joshua Thompson said. 

Audition etudes, which were released in May of last year, span the likes of the Petrushka Ballet by Igor Stravinsky, and Symphonic Dances from Leonard Bernstein’s classic West Side Story among many other technically demanding piece selections. Balancing time across an extensive range of repertoire, students were also tasked to practice pieces for school performance and personal lessons, in addition to the All-State excerpts. 

“For me, [All-State auditions] helped illuminate an important quality: the ability to adjust my mindset to be more self-confident,” Evelyn Liu ‘26 said. “Throughout the entire process, I constantly compared myself with those around me. By the time of the audition, I didn’t expect to do well at all. However, through qualifying for All-State, I was able to see that my efforts in practicing were worthwhile and that they paid off.” 

Learning under the direction of nationally-renowned conductors, what culminates three days of rehearsals at the clinic is a renewed passion for the collaborative joy of performance and camaraderie.

Listed below are the students who qualified for one of three ensembles within the 2022 TMEA All-State Orchestra.



Symphony Orchestra: 

Peter Kim ‘24 

Evelyn Liu ‘26 

Suhaas Patil ‘23

Lerchen Zhong ‘26

Philharmonic Orchestra: 

Natalie Ju ‘26

Hyunjae Lee ‘23

Daniel Nam ‘24

Aimee Wang ‘24 

Sinfonietta Orchestra: 

Gloria Wu ‘24 



Symphony Orchestra: 

Jenny Yun ‘25

Sinfonietta Orchestra: 

Eric Yang ‘23 

Dalton Ma ‘26 



Symphony Orchestra: 

Yochen Zhong ‘24 

Philharmonic Orchestra: 

Akhil Gharpurey ‘23 

Noah Kim ‘23 

Sinfonietta Orchestra: 

Adriana Cheng ‘26