Gifted HHHS Musicians Sign College Pledges

HHHS signing ceremonyThree wildly talented musicians signed letters of commitment Wednesday, announcing plans to move from Harker Heights High School into college fine arts programs.


It was the third of five scheduled Killeen ISD Fine Arts campus signing ceremonies this week.


After hosting districtwide signing events the past two years, KISD Fine Arts Director Karen Marshall said the number of students led to the change.


In addition, she said, the campus events serve to encourage and motivate younger students considering a career in the arts.


Harker Heights signees included Madison Bratton, going to Temple College to study music, Elena Bryan, going to the University of Houston to study vocal performance and Janista Browne, going to University of North Texas to study music.


Bratton, a three-year All-Region Choir member, has performed in all the school’s top choirs.

Elena Bryan University of Houston

She said in a written response, “choir has really grown my love for music and singing and is the reason I will continue in the music field.”


Choir Director Spencer Wiley commented on all three signing students, praising their significant growth in music and the strong character and service they brought to the program.


“She started as a shy, talented singer,” he said of Bratton. “She is a phenomenal musician and even better person.”


Bryan is a KISD history maker as the first female to make it to the All-State Choir all four years of high school.


“Everyone knows you are a phenomenal talent,” Wiley said to Bryan.


“You have a God-given talent and voice. What I love about you and what I think we all love about you is you’re a good person. The leadership you have given this choir program is amazing and is going to be missed.”


“The choir teachers at HHHS have truly changed my life by giving me opportunities to challenge myself,” said Bryan.

HHHS Madison BrattonHHHS Janista Browne


“I have grown as a vocalist, but more greatly as a person in my time at HHHS. I thank Mr. Wiley and Mrs. (Amber) Moon for being so incredibly humble and giving me an example of a successful, kind individual.”


Browne excelled in both choir and orchestra. She also plays piano. She is a three-year All-Region violinist and two-year All-Region choir member.


She also earned awards in UIL solo and ensemble in orchestra, choir and piano, earning a First Division rating in piano at the state level.


Orchestra director Joshua Kroft praised her for her hard work and the pieces she composed for the orchestra.


"Every time I ask you for something, you are always giving," the director said, pointing out her work with the Bell County Orchestra helping younger musicians. "I hope you keep on giving the way you have and continue to be this great beacon."


Already an accomplished composer and piano instructor, she said that music is her life.


"Participating in invigorating musical groups every day has helped me cultivate my skills and grow both musically and personally," she said. "Teaching and performing music will be my career and high school music has helped me decide that."