In Texas, an organization called the University Interscholastic
League (UIL) is responsible for overseeing competitions among pubic
schools. This includes music, drama, languages, athletics, etc. UIL also
creates and maintains extensive rules and regulations for all of its activities.
You can learn more about the UIL at their homepage. NOTE: THE PML IS NOW (2011) AVAILABLE ONLINE ONLY FROM THE UIL WEB SITE
Every four years, the Music area of UIL publishes a list
of compositions authorized for use in UIL-sanctioned events; this list
is referred to as the PML (Prescribed Music List). It includes works
from the wind, string, and vocal genres and classifies them according to
difficulty level and media (ensemble or solo). The music for band is divided
into 5 grades, "Grade 1" being the most simple (for young bands or small
schools) and "Grade 5" being the most challenging (large high school bands).
Band Contest Requirements:
Public school bands that participate in the annual, state-wide
UIL Concert and Sightreading Contest (held each spring) must select
two works from the PML as well as a third selection (not required to come
from the PML), most frequently a march.
School Conference Designation:
In general, schools across the state are categorized
into "conferences" which are determined mostly by school enrollment population.
The first (or only) band at a school is designated as a "Varsity" band;
second and subsequent bands at the same school are classified as "Non-Varsity." These two criteria (conference and classification) determine which level
of graded music a band must select for performance at contest.
Middle school bands select from the Grade 1 and Grade
2 levels. According to the band's conference, the requirements are: (a)
two "Grade 1" pieces, (b) one "Grade 1" and one "Grade 2" work, or (c)
two "Grade 2" pieces. Bands are allowed to choose music from higher grade
levels should they desire to do so.