News and Updates

 

Changes and updates for 2023 - important!

 

Houstonfest Scholarships

 

Scholarships at State

 

State Promo Video Contest

 

Arrival at Heights High School

 

Lunch options

 

Contest Promo Video #1 (students from one school tell why they love contest)

 

Contest Promo Video #2 (one student tells why she loves contest)

 

Teacher-to-Teacher Tips

 

"Texas State German Contest at 40" newsletter series (full of tips for contest prep and Pass auf! study material)

 

Tips for Pair Discussion

 

Photo Gallery

 

Daily log of changes to state-qualifier list

 

 

Important Dates

 

Tue., Jan. 17, 2023, 11:59 p.m.Houstonfest registration spreadsheet due for regular price of $12/student (payment does not have to be mailed until 1/23).

 

Mon., Jan. 23, 2023, 11:59 p.m.Houstonfest registration spreadsheet due for late price of $15/student. Deadline to postmark Houstonfest payment.

 

Sat., Jan. 28, 2023, 9:00 a.m.:  Submission of entries in the 7 virtual Houstonfest events due (get link to Google Form from your teacher).

 

Tue., Jan. 31, 2023, 11:59 p.m.:  Remote judging of the 7 virtual Houstonfest events ends.

 

Wed., Feb. 1, 2023, 9:00 p.m. Houstonfest changes (adds, drops, substitutions) due. After this point, no more changes will be allowed.

 

Sat., Feb. 4, 2023 Houstonfest, Heights High School, Houston

 

Fri., Feb. 10, 2023, 11:59 p.m.:  State online registration due for "early bird" price of $12/student (payment does not have to be mailed until 2/15).

 

Wed., Feb. 15, 2023, 11:59 p.m.:  State online registration due for regular price of $15/student. Deadline to postmark State payment.

 

Sat., Feb. 18, 2023, 9:00 a.m.:  Submission of entries in the 7 virtual State events due (get link to Google Form from your teacher). Also, Mary El-Beheri Memorial Scholarship applications due.

 

Mon., Feb. 20, 2023, 8:00 p.m.:  Entries in promotional video contest due to State director.

 

Tue., Feb. 21, 2023, 11:59 p.m.:  Remote judging of the 7 virtual State events ends.

 

Sat., Feb. 25, 2023Texas State German Contest, Texas State University, San Marcos

 

Sat., Mar. 4, 2023, 11:59 p.m. Houstonfest Scholarship applications due.

 

Sun., Mar. 12, 2023 Gail Cope State Scholarship applications due.

 

Sun., April 30, 2023 Gail Cope Teacher Grant applications due.

Rules:  Music Events

 

General rules for all music events:

  • It is not allowed for any contestant to perform any piece which he/she has performed in any previous year in Classical Ensemble, Contemporary Music, or Vocal Solo. (This rule does not apply to Folk Dance or Polka Band.) For example:  If your Contemporary Music group performed "99 Luftballons" by Nena in 2022, you may not use that song for Contemporary Music in 2023 or 2024 unless the members of the group are 100% different in the subsequent years. The spirit of this rule is that students should be challenged to work with different material from one year to the next.

  • Failure to provide at least 2 copies of the piece to the judges will result in a 10-point deduction from the cumulative score.

Note:  The Chorus competition has been discontinued as of the 2023 contest.

 

Classical Ensemble:

Entry Limit:  1 ensemble per school:  3-6 musicians; 1 member may be a student who has never been enrolled in German.

Time Limits:  5-10 minutes, with a 30-second grace period (over or under).

The piece(s) must be by a German-speaking composer and be a recognized work of music, e.g., Beethoven, Bach, Brahms, Haydn, Schubert, Strauss, Mozart, Schumann, Mendelssohn. Music must be classical and groups may do medleys of songs. No electric instruments, other than one electric keyboard, are allowed. No music stands will be provided at the contest site. Attire is part of the judging criteria. If a non-German student is included in the ensemble, this information must be given to the judges. Two copies of the sheet music must be provided for the judges.

Download critique sheet.

 

Contemporary Music:

Entry Limit:  1 entry per school: 1-5 musicians (vocalists and/or instrumentalists, but no advantaged speakers as vocalists).

Time Limits:  2-4 minutes, with a 30-second grace period (over or under); contestants must be able to set up and break down in a total of 5 minutes (in addition to the actual performance time).

One piece is to be sung from a contemporary (post-World War II) German-speaking musical artist or group, which may include rap (must be school appropriate). Lyrics must be predominantly sung in the German language and be memorized. Contestants may sing a cappella, with pre-recorded accompaniment, or with one or more group members playing instruments live (acoustic or electric). However, no playback devices, microphones, speakers, or instruments will be provided at the contest site; contestants are responsible for providing their own equipment and instruments. Two copies of the lyrics must be provided for the judges.

Download critique sheet.

 

Folk Dance - Einzeltanz (Couple Folk Dance):

In 2022, we completed our project to construct a four-year rotation of dances for Einzeltanz. The first dance, a Schuhplattler (the Heidauer), was used for the first several years that the event existed, through 2018. A second dance, a Schottische (the Markländer), was introduced in 2019, and a third dance, a Ländler (the Zillertaler), was introduced in 2020. There was no Einzeltanz competition in 2021 due to COVID-19. The dance for 2022 was a Mazurka (the Nussetöter). In 2023, we start the rotation over with the Schuhplattler.

Schools may enter both the Einzeltanz and team competitions, the Einzeltanz competition only, or the team competition only. If a school enters both competitions, the dancers in the Einzeltanz competition may be, but do not have to be, in the group entered in the team competition.

Entry Limit:  1 couple per school

Selection of Dance: You must check the website for the current year's dance!

All couples dance the same dance, which will be posted on the website by early fall of each school year. Couples DO NOT need to provide dance notes or music, as judges will already have dance notes. The same recording from the website will be provided at contest. Only one couple will dance at a time, and the boy and girl will be judged/critiqued separately, i.e., one or more judges will judge the boy, and one or more different judges will judge the girl. The boy's points and the girl's points will then be added together to obtain the final score for the couple. See the critique sheet for the specific judging criteria. 

In years when the dance is a Schuhplattler, the dance will take place inside a four-meter circle marked on the floor, with an X marked in the middle. In other years, there may not be a circle. The dance must follow the posted documentation. After being introduced, the couple will walk to the middle of the circle (or middle of the dance floor). The boy will be asked "(Name), are you ready?" When he replies yes, the music will begin. If necessary, the couple may start over once during the Eingangsplattler. The boy should indicate this by stepping outside the circle.

Costumes (Tracht):

Tracht comes from the word tragen meaning "to wear."  Thus, Tracht means that which one wears. As each German-speaking region has its own distinctive Tracht, and Trachten are far too diverse to describe in just a few short sentences, Tracht will not be judged as to whether it is worn properly or authentically, only whether it is worn uniformly. Basic suggestions:

Boy:  black shoes; white, black, or gray knee socks; leather pants (Lederhose) with suspenders (or reasonable approximation such as dark short); button-down shirt (not T-shirt or polo shirt); hat optional.

Girl:  black shoes, white stockings or tights, Dirndl (or reasonable approximation such as a dress or skirt of roughly knee-length), blouse, apron, hat optional.

Download the dance notes (instructions).

View a video of the dance on YouTube (coming soon)

Download the music for the dance.

Download critique sheet.

 

Folk Dance - Team:

Entry Limit:  1 entry per school.

Total Group Size:  minimum 6 dancers, no maximum.

Active Dancers on the Floor at Any Time:  minimum 4 dancers performing, maximum 16 dancers performing.

Dance Limits:  4 dances minimum, 5 dances maximum.

Time Limits:  10 minutes minimum, 15 minutes maximum, including entrance, exit, and transitions, with a 30-second grace period. There is a 10-point penalty for going under the minimum time limit or over the maximum time limit.

There is no required dance. Dancers must provide their own music, music-player, and extension cord, if needed. The group must provide at least 3 copies of the following: a list of the dancers' names and documentation of each dance, including the categorization (Level I, II, III) of the dance and the region of origin of the dance. Points will be deducted from "Authenticity" if documentation is not provided. Dances not already categorized on this website must be submitted to the regional director by November 1 so that they can be categorized by an expert panel.

Download critique sheet.

 

Polka Band:

Entry Limit:  1 band per school:  5-12 musicians + 1 director (i.e., max. 13 members); 2 members may be students who have never been enrolled in German.

Time Limits:  5-10 minutes, with a 30-second grace period (over or under).

All pieces of music must be by German-speaking composers. No electric instruments are allowed. No music stands will be provided at the contest site. If a non-German student is included in the band, this information must be given to the judges. Two copies of the sheet music must be provided for the judges.

Download critique sheet.


Vocal Solo:

Entry Limit:  2 soloists per school (no advantaged speakers).

Time Limits:  2-5 minutes, with a 30-second grace period (over or under).

The contestant must sing a recognized classical or folk song from a German-speaking composer. The song must be sung in German and must be memorized. The soloist is responsible for their own accompaniment, whether recorded or live, or may sing a cappella. No instruments or audio-players will be provided at the contest site. Two copies of the sheet music (notes and lyrics) must be provided for the judges.

Download critique sheet.

 

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When is the next Houstonfest?

 

Saturday,

February 4, 2023

 

Where is Houstonfest?

 

Heights High School

413 E. 13th Street, Houston, TX 77008

 

Link to Texas State German Contest

 

Texas State German Contest on Facebook

 

Texas State German Contest 40th Anniversary Facebook Group