ILMEA Competitions 2019

What is ILMEA? And why is it a big deal for singers and musicians? ILMEA, also known as the Illinois Music Educators Association, is a professional organization comprised of the band and choir directors across the entirety of Illinois. ILMEA is important for singers and musicians because it’s a competition against other students individually. It also provides music students all over the state an opportunity to be rewarded for their hard work and skill.


 ILMEA is for singers, instrumentalists, and percussionists who are in junior high or high school. ILMEA divides the entire state of Illinois into 9 districts; Benet is in District 9 along with at least 50 other schools. Some of these schools include Bolingbrook, Dundee-Crown, Glenbard North/South/East/West, Metea Valley, Neuqua, Naperville, Oswego, Waubonsie, IMSA, Plainfield, and so many others up north to Carepentersville and west to Hampshire. Students in the district compete once in October.  Their October audition scores determine whether they will go on to State and also have a spot in the District Festival. From there, those who are eligible will audition again for the All-State or the Honor level of ensemble.


Every student in the entire state who wishes to compete in ILMEA prepares and practices the same material. Practicing the given material takes a lot of time, and the material itself is quite difficult. The students who make it to the district band, orchestra, or choir are considered some of the best high school musicians in their district. At state level, students are competing with the best high school musicians in the entire state of Illinois.


How did the Benet students do this time? Benet sent 52 students to audition in October of this year. Of those 52, 23 of them earned a place in the district ensembles. The 23 competitors include two from Band, one from Jazz Band, one from Orchestra, fifteen from Choir, and four from Freshman-Sophomore Choir. Of the 90 district wide second Bass voices who auditioned, senior Vytautas Staniskis will be advancing to the State Honor Choir with the highest score in the district. Mr. Brian Wand said, “We are proud of all the student musicians and their accomplishments and wish them luck as they attend the District festival in November; and are excited to hear the news of who would be qualified for the state ensembles.” By December this year, the students who are going to State will be announced.


In past years, Benet has been lucky enough to send many choir members at the state level, even a few of the orchestra members and some band members. They have always enjoyed great success because the majority of students are very talented and work hard to prepare for the auditions. Last year, there were 13 students who advanced to State, which is the most number of students Benet has ever sent! Go Redwings!