Tigers march to silver medal at state meet

Dripping Springs High head band director Keith Lancaster joined in celebration with his students after the Tiger Marching Band won the silver medal in the state UIL  state competition.

Lancaster is set to retire after the Fall semester, leaving behind a multitude of accolades and a lifetime of sharing his passion for music of students.

“This has been just wonderful,” said Lancaster after the band’s preliminary performance at the UIL state marching competition in San Antonio Nov. 4.” I’m glad to be part of this event and the kids are too.”

(photo by Timothy Stuckey)

A member of the Dripping Springs Tiger color guard prepares to toss her rifle during the Marching Band’s preliminary performance at the UIL Class 5A state marching competition at the Alamodome in San Antonio. (photo by Timothy Stuckey)

While Lancaster’s interests in music education began with his experience as a drum major at Hays High, his interest in music began much earlier.

“For me, a passion for music began as a sixth grader, when band directors came to our school to make a presentation about the band and recruit young musicians,” said Lancaster. “I remember going home and asking my parents if I could be in the band.”

After working with the band directors as a drum major at Hays High, Lancaster said it became obvious what he wanted to do in life.

He said his main reason for pursuing a career in education was the challenge of working with students and helping them learn to do something with confidence, something that would elevate their belief in themselves.

Lancaster continued his music education at Texas State University in 1985 and after graduation. He served as the band director for several schools including Weslaco and Woodsboro High before finally settling down in Dripping Springs.

Now after 19 years of dedication and hard work, Lancaster ends his career as band director with the 2017 UIL Texas State Marching Competition.

It marked the fourth time Lancaster has helped the Tiger Marching Band reach the UIL state marching competition during his tenure. Dripping Springs claimed the Class 4A state title in marching band in 2009, then followed with a 4A state silver medal in 2011. The Tigers finished as a 5A state finalist in 2015.

The band’s show this year was “Reflections: See What’s Inside” with music from “Medea’s Dance of Vengeance” by Samuel Barber, “October” by Eric Whitacre, “Reflection” from Mulan and “Reflections of Earth” from Disney’s “Millennium Celebration Suite” all arranged by Carol Britten Chambers.

Lancaster said the musical selections and choreography were designed to reflect the changes and internal struggles that every young person faces in there life.

Lancaster said the music changes from somber at first and gradually picks up into a faster and happier selection, telling the story of a “breakthrough” of an individual trying to discover oneself.

“The music is a journey of reflection and finding oneself,” said Lancaster, “It’s based on questions we all ask ourselves growing up; Is this who I am and is this what I want?”

See more photos from the event here. (photos by Timothy Stuckey)

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