Every year, now for going on twenty years, I've been ignored, usually with remarks such as "The PML committee only can add pieces that are submitted" and "There's just not a need for that" or my personal favorite eyeroll "There's plenty of good music on the PML for those levels already."
The fact that there are:
171 Grade 1
219 Grade 2
291 Grade 3
254 Grade 4, and
343 Grade 5 pieces belies that completely.
More bands in the state of Texas are required to play off the Grade 1 and 2 lists than the other three combined. Every middle school NV. Every SNV. Every C and CC varsity. Every high school non-varsity 5A and down. Every HS Varsity from 3A and down. And let's to forget the 5A and CCC groups that play *one* song off the Grade 2 list, even if their other song is Grade 3.
Can those groups play "up" if they choose? Absolutely - but there are literally a thousand bands that have only 171 pieces off the Grade 1 list to choose from, and fully a third of them are simply not accessible for programs with limited instrumentation. Or they're pieces that would be a Grade 2 (or even a Grade 3+) if the full piece were performed. (Example: Do one movement of Arnold's English Dances - it's a Grade 2. Because most groups doing Grade 2 music have enough independent players to cover five trumpet parts, four horn parts, six clarinet parts if you cover any two of the Eb, contra, or alto along with the three Bb and bass clarinet parts, and two flute parts PLUS piccolo. Never mind that the full piece is a Grade V, and not just because of length)
There needs to be a committee of people to study JUST the Grade 1 list, remove pieces that are inappropriate, reclassify those pieces worthy of staying on the list, and then a full fifty to a hundred new pieces need to be added to the list. Use the Teaching Music through Performance in Band series, other states' festival lists, and composer submissions as a guide. Then convene another committee for the Grade 2 list.
They're both completely out of line with what's realistically going on in many band halls. And remember - a band can always play up if they feel that the music is "too easy" in their classification.
But what do I know, I'm only one man. And the "powers that be" don't want to invest the time, energy, and resources into getting this done, never mind that fully 2/3 of the bands in Texas would benefit from it.