Category Archives: Uncategorized

Covid-19 Audition Update

Hello Students,

This year’s Plano West auditions are now in Google Classroom. To audition, use join code “xovohqy” The new due date and digital submission requirements are posted in the Google Classroom assignment. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out!

2020-2021 Audition Music

Incoming juniors and seniors: Please find the audition music for next school year below.

Current Sophomores (incoming Juniors) will sign up with your high school director for a 5 minute audition the evening of April 6-8, and current Juniors (next year’s Seniors) will audition during their class period that same week.

Students who are transferring to Plano West (from outside the West Cluster or PISD), can email Mr. Ross at to schedule an audition.

To access the audition music, use the link below.  If you have any issues accessing the music, talk with the orchestra teacher at your campus.

2019-2020 Junior Officers

We’re happy to announce our junior officers for this school year. It was an incredible group of candidates, and the decision making process was very difficult.

If you weren’t selected: At the end of the school year, we typically select 2 additional officers to replace the slots left by the two new co-presidents. This gives us a chance to “make right” on any student who we mistakenly left out this first round. If you hope for one of these slots, we hope you’ll continue to lead and serve the orchestra by example.

In addition, please understand that this is a reflection more on the number of quality candidates we met and limited officer slots than the quality of the candidates. We interviewed 55 candidates and could have easily selected a quality officer group of nearly 50.

Officer results are in alpha order by first name.

Aashna Desai
Abeni Belay
Anjali Brown
Arman Deendar
Arnold Venter
Bethel Kim
Chloe Yang
Cindy Hu
Claire Charton
Elliot Chen
Emaan Noorzaie
Govardhan Poondi
Hemal Pathak
Inka Durcanksa
Joshua McDonald
Kareem Aly
Kelly Zhou
Krista McLeod
Mohena Gupta
Priscilla Lee
Rohan Thomas
Sasha Nepomnyashy
Wesley Geng
Wesly Chen
William Blake

All-State Results

Congratulations to the following All-State members from Plano West!

Violin – Ashley Tauhert (Symphony 34), Vivian Zhang (Philharmonic 67), Priscilla Lee (Philharmonic 68), Jessica Shin (Sinfonietta 94), Sua Park (Sinfonietta 107), Anqy Tong (Sinfonietta 110)

Viola – Jackie Liu (Symphony 1), Arman Deendar (Symphony 8), Yejean Kim (Symphony 13), Vaibhav Sriram (Sinfonietta 41)

Cello – Bryan Han (Symphony 6), Eddie Xu (Philharmonic 20), Matthew Lin (Philharmonic 26)

Bass – Karthik Iyer (Symphony 7), Kevin Meng (Symphony 9), Sasha Nepomnyashy (Philharmonic 23), Jonathan Vasilyev (Sinfonietta 30)

2019 Screening Audition Results

Congratulations to the following students advancing to the All-State recording round this Saturday.


Ashley T, Priscilla L, Vivian Z, Annie W, Anqy T, Jessica S, John C, Meige L, Sua P


Jackie L, Arman D, Yejean K, Grace Z, Andrw Y, Vaibhav S


Eddie X, Joscie P, Catherine Y, Matthew L, Nathan N, Bryan H, Emily Y


Kevin M, Jonathan V, Sasha N, Karthik I, Jackson B, Ishaan R

2019 All-Region Results

Congratulations to the Plano West students who earned placement in the All-Region Orchestras today!  For those who qualify, the All-State recording screening round is on October 21.

Symphony Violin. Those ranked above 40 qualify for October 21.

Ashely Tauhert 2, Vivian Zhang 3, Jessica Shin 7, Sua Park 17, Priscilla Lee 19, Daniel Liang 20, Annie Wong 21, Meiyi Lu 23, Sanjana Shriram 25, Victor Tsao 27, John Choo 29, Emily Huang 30, Anqy Tong 31, Govardhan Poondi 36, Meige Lu 37

Philharmonic Violin

Christopher Wang 4, Chloe Yang 8, Jimmy Ding 10, Xue Rui 12, Rohan Thomas 16, Michael Lam 17, Kesavan Venkatesh 32, Jaquelynn Palen 33, Shirley Yu 38, Elliot Chen 43, Shido Nakajima (second alternate), Seungyeon Bin (third alternate), Gina Jeon (4th alternate), Ting Mao (9th alternate)

Violas. All listed advance to October 21.

Jackie Liu (Symph 1), Arman Deendar (Symph 6), Andrew Yu (Symph 8), Vaibhav Sriram (Symph 11), Yejean Kim (Symph 14), Grace Zhu (Phil 6), Sharon Xue (Phil 14)

Cellos. All listed advance to October 21.

Marlon Florez (Symph 1), Eddie Xu (Symph 2), Derek Qin (Symph 3), Bryan Han (Symph 5), Matthew Lin (Symph 7), Emily Yeh (Symph 8), Kihan Sung (Symph 9), Catherine Yang (Symph 11), Daniel Cao (Phil 2), Joscelynn Palen (Phil 5), Nathan Nguyen (Phil 6), Wesley Geng (Phil 8), Carter Schmidt (Phil 12), Shenai Chan (Phil 13)

Basses. Those with a * advance to October 21.

Sasha Nepomnyashy* (Symph 3), Jackson Benjamin* (Symph 4), Kevin Meng* (Symph 6), Jonathan Vasilyev* (Phil 2), Karthik Iyer* (Phil 4), Ishaan Roy* (Phil 5), Nima Sadri (Phil 6), Caroline Peters* (Phil 7), William Blake* (Phil 8)

2019-2020 Orchestra Placements

Dear Students,

Below, you will find a link to find your orchestra placement for next school year.  Students are listed by student ID number in “last name alphabetical order,” and it does not reflect your placement within your ensemble.

The nature of auditions is that some people are happy with their placements, but others feel some disappointment.  Please understand that Mrs. Gross and I spent a great deal of time working through the audition results to guarantee that everyone is in the group that will allow them to succeed, but also to become better musicians.  Most importantly, please don’t let the results define you as a musician or as a person.  In the end, none of this matters that much.  But the work that you will do (or not do) means everything about who you will become as a person. In other words, grow where you are planted.

If you’re disappointed, please consider a few points:

1. The level of competition at West is high.  Really high.  The upside of this is that all of our orchestras really play beyond their apparent level.   For example, the third orchestra at West is playing at a level much higher than the top orchestra at most schools in Texas.  Regardless of the group you’re in, it is going to be good.

2. It is totally normal to be in a “lower” group at West than you were in at Shepton or Jasper.  Juniors, remember that you were auditioning against seniors with more experience and against talented players from the other high school.  Believe me, though, that the level of music we will be playing in the groups will not in any way be a step back from what you are accustomed to.

Later in the summer, counselors will let us know if there are conflicts in your schedule. Mrs. Gross and I will work those out for you – if there’s something we need to discuss with you in that regard, we will send you an email or call.

The groups that qualify for honors credit are Chamber, Kamer, Camerata, and Philharmonia.

I’m so excited for our orchestra next year!  This will be the largest Plano West Orchestra in history.  Let’s make it a great year!

2019 Banquet Info

Due to the large number of students we won’t see today due to AP tests, important info for the tonight’s orchestra banquet is here.

Location: Renaissance Hotel (900 E Lookout Dr, Richardson, TX 75082).

Parking: Park in the parking garage directly across from the hotel. You will receive a parking ticket when you go through the gate — KEEP THIS TICKET AND BRING IT INSIDE WITH YOU. There will be a machine in our banquet area to “validate” your ticket, which means you’ll be able to leave the parking garage for free. Don’t lose this ticket or you will have to pay when you leave.

If you park on the street, you will very likely be towed. Only park in the parking garage.

Drop-Offs: If you aren’t parking, there is a car lane that allows for quick and easy drop-off at the hotel. There is no need to drop off far away from the hotel.

Time Frame
6:30 – 7:00: Check in. Check in at your school’s table.
7:00 – 8:00: Dinner
8:00 – 8:45: Individual school presentations
8:45: Dance battle
9:00 – 11:00: Dance

If you are being picked up, you must be picked up promptly at 11:00pm.

2019 Alumni/Senior Performance

Are you a Plano West Orchestra alumni? Then join us on our last concert of the year for a developing orchestra tradition. We are going to end the May 6 concert with a special senior performance (Music of the Night from Phantom of the Opera). Mid-performance, orchestra alumni will join the seniors to finish out the piece. Help transition the seniors to “alumni-hood” if you’re available!

The concert will be on May 6 at 6:30pm. The senior performance will be the last piece on the program, so it will happen at some point after 8:30pm. You will need to be in the orchestra room as Chamber Orchestra is performing their final piece (Bohemian Rhapsody) – a student will come and bring you to where you need to be. Attire is casual…. if you have an old orchestra t-shirt, wear that!

If you want to participate, print out the music at HERE. (All piano and percussion parts will be covered by PWSH students. Do not print these parts) You will need to provide your own instruments. If you’re a cello or bass player, we MIGHT have a limited number of instruments to lend. Please email PWSH Orchestra Director Ryan Ross at to inquire on a possible instrument-borrow. Violins – you can choose if you play Violin 1 or 2.

As marked in the music, the piece will begin with only seniors playing on stage. At measure 31, we will repeat back to 14, and on the repeat alumni will join. From there, the entire group will play to the end.

No need to RSVP this year. Our email database only goes back to 2011 or so. Please help spread the word to our alumni going all the way back to 2001!