Dr. Brad Kent, Music Director
Dr. Brad Kent, Music Director

A Successful Marching Band Season Leads Us into Concert Season

By Dr. Brad Kent, Director of Music | Wednesday, November 27, 2013 10:38 AM

Now that the competitive marching band season has concluded and we are transitioning into concert season, please allow me to share some thoughts with you. First of all, I would like to thank all of the students, directors, administrators, and parents who play such an important role in the success of our programs in Texas. Your passion and commitment to excellence is truly remarkable!

The 2013 marching band season culminated by showcasing some of Texas’ very best bands at the State Marching Band Contest on Nov. 4 and 5 at the Alamodome in San Antonio. The level of performance and achievement by these bands embodied the exemplary standard for which arts education in Texas is known. Please join me in congratulating our 2013 State Champion Marching Bands:

A – Shiner High School, Stephen Krupicka, Director
AA – Whitesboro High School, Jim Cude, Director
AAAA – Vandegrift High School, Jeremy Spicer, Director

Since marching band is a constant evolving entity within music education, invariably rules and procedures should be examined to determine their relevance. Therefore, in September I formed a marching band study committee to gather input, synthesize ideas and recommend ways to improve our current system. The committee is comprised of the following members:

Mark Chambers – Director of Music – Northeast ISD
Amanda Drinkwater – Director of Bands – Marcus HS
Paul Flinchbaugh – Director of Instrumental Music – Brownsville ISD
Mike Glaze – Director of Bands – Sundown HS
Kathy Johnson – Director of Bands – Argyle HS
Richard Lovelace – Director of Bands – New Boston HS
Monte Mast – Director of Fine Arts – Klein ISD
Jim McDaniel – Director of Fine Arts - Frisco ISD
Tom SoRelle – Director of Bands – Frenship HS

The committee will first meet at TMEA for an open forum, which will allow directors and administrators to address the committee with suggestions. The committee will then meet several more times over the following months, with the final meeting to be held at the conclusion of the TBA Convention in July. At this point they will present recommendations to the UIL State Music Office for consideration. The committee members are already gathering input; so, please feel free to contact any of them with your thoughts or email us at music@uiltexas.org, as we want to hear from our stakeholders.

And now, speaking of transitioning into concert season, I would like to take this opportunity to invite the band directors to apply to have your band perform at the 2014 State Wind Ensemble Festival, which will be held at The University of Texas at Austin’s Butler School of Music on May 3, 2014.  The goal of this event is for bands to accept the challenge of making music for the sole purpose of performing at the highest level of musical excellence possible for an appreciative, supportive audience in an optimum acoustical space.  Nationally recognized evaluators will give your band comments, critiques, and a clinic after your performance. Every year we have bands from all conferences participate, so please consider this wonderful musical opportunity for you and your students. 

In addition, we are pleased to announce that the 2014 event will be streamed live, so everyone can watch and listen to the event from the convenience of any location.  This year’s evaluators are John Whitwell – Director of Bands Emeritus, Michigan State University; Caroline Beatty – Director of Bands, Texas State University; Scott Teeple - Wind Ensemble Conductor, University of Wisconsin; and Scott Hanna; Assistant Director of Bands, The University of Texas at Austin.  For more information on this event please visit http://www.uiltexas.org/music/state-wind-ensemble-festival.

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