IT'S a battle which is usually won by the big kids, but this year the judges have given the little ones a shot.
Members of the Banksia Beach State School big band were absolutely chuffed when they heard the news that they would be the only primary school to compete in the Biennial State Fanfare Festival from July 30.
The three-day Brisbane festival is a battle of the bands where 11 state finalists strut their stuff for professional adjudicators and a public audience.
The judges then have to select five ensembles to perform at the grand final concert at Queensland Performing Arts Centre.
Sounds simple? It isn't.
From the 20 Fanfare regional finals involving more than 730 schools and 19,000 students across the state, 11 ensembles are selected to participate in the state event.
In the history of Fanfare only four primary schools have ever made it through to the state final and only one has made it through to the grand final - Wilsonton State School in 1986 grasped a grand final place under the direction of conductor Gary Hooper.
Fortunately for Banksia Beach, Gary Hooper has guided them all the way.
"It's going to be a bit of a David versus Goliath situation. It's a difficult thing to achieve going against schools that have a massive amount of resources where we do not," Mr Hooper said.
"It's unusual to see children as young as they are playing in a big band... it makes people sit back and listen because it is very different."
The musician said he was happy to sit back and watch the kids get the glory.
"I think I get more of a kick out of seeing the kids playing and enjoying that music these days."
Banksia Beach principal Jacqui King said it was extremely rare for a primary school to make it to the state final.
"It's normally very hard to compete against secondary schools because of the number of years of tuition their students have. To get a primary school-aged student up to that standard takes an awful lot of skill and tuition," she said.
"This is the result of five years of really hard work. We now have 160 students enrolled in the music program, a 64-piece concert band and a 30-piece big band for the most advanced kids."
The band includes nine-year-old Lelearna Shelley, who plays a saxophone nearly as big as she is.
The school has backed the music program all the way, and Ms King praised Mr Hooper's talent as a music teacher.
"Kids just love his lessons and strive to meet his standards," she said.
"The community is excited to see the little primary school band compete against the best high school bands in the state."
More information on Banksia Beach State School and the music program can be found at banksiabeachss.eq.edu.au.