By RICH KEITH, Four Points News
The Vandegrift High School marching band and Vision Dance Company took 10th place in the Bands of America Super Regional finals contest at the Alamodome in San Antonio on Saturday.
“The Bands of America San Antonio Super Regional is known for being the hardest marching competition in the country,” said Mike Howard, VHS director of bands.
Notably, Leander ISD became the first school district to send four band programs to a single BOA finals performance.
“Out of 65 bands, it is amazing that half of the 14 finalist bands are from the Austin area. Above that, four of the bands are from Leander ISD,” Howard said. “This was an historic night for Central Texas bands and Leander ISD.”
Saturday’s BOA Super Regional competition was won by San Antonio’s Claudia Taylor Johnson HS, followed by Austin’s James Bowie HS in 2nd place and Leander HS taking 3rd. Leander also tied with Marcus HS for the outstanding music performance award category.
The top bands from this and three other Super Regionals from across the country can move on to the Grand Championships in Indianapolis.
LISD’s presence showed its Class AAA schools can compete nationally with the best Class AAAA schools, as the nine other finalist bands were each larger Class AAAA programs. (Not the same classifications as UIL uses.)
“I am very proud of the band performances and successes,” said Bret Champion, LISD superintendent. “It’s a tribute to the hard work of the students, staff and parents, and also a tribute to our terrific middle school band programs.”
“We cannot forget our wonderful dance programs, as well as the color guard, all of whom make the shows come to life. Leander ISD fine arts programs continue to lead the way in the state of Texas,” Champion added.
Leading up to the finals on Saturday, was the preliminary competition on Friday. At that, VHS competed with 65 top marching bands from across the country. Vandegrift — with its program “Joy of Life” inspired by music from Aaron Copeland — placed second in Class AAA. Leander was 1st and Cedar Park was 3rd.
Their results got them to the Saturday evening finals performance for the second time in VHS history.
“I couldn’t be happier with how the VHS band wrapped up this year’s competitive season,” Howard said.
“If this is your first BOA San Antonio Super Regional, please know that making this finals contest is a big deal,” he told the students.
This completes the Viper marching season for 2014.
2014 Bands of America Super Regional San Antonio Finals :
93.35 – Claudia Taylor Johnson HS
92.15 – James Bowie HS
91.80 – Leander HS
91.00 – Marcus HS
90.10 – The Woodlands HS
90.05 – Hebron HS
89.95 – Cedar Park HS
88.90 – L.D. Bell HS
87.35 – Ronald Reagan HS
87.05 – Vandegrift HS
85.05 – Round Rock HS
84.70 – Westlake HS
84.55 – Flower Mound HS
84.00 – Vista Ridge HS