Triumph for The Wind Emsemble

Decatur Band starts season off well after receiving prestigious award

During the 2017-2018 Band season, Decatur High School won The American Prize in Band/Wind Ensemble Performance, a national award for excellence in that field. The realization of this accomplishment happened in July when the winners were announced for the youth, high school and college levels.

The American Prize is not an ordinary band competition. Instead of performing live, band directors submit recordings of performances for music experts to judge in specific areas. According to the The American Prize website, the Prize strives for its judges to be as diverse in geographic origin, skill and experience as the winners of the prize itself.

Winning the American Prize illustrates the importance of Decatur’s performers and that of Band Director Robert Truan who has helped bring home straight superior ratings at Large Group Performance Evaluation (LGPE) for Decatur as well as many other accomplishments.

With Truan’s guidance, the band is hard at work.

The Wind Ensemble has been working on a mixture of marching band music and concert music thus far,” Wind Ensemble member Renny Hyde said, “but we are preparing two pieces to perform in concert.”

Sophomore Kylie Reynolds, another member of Decatur’s Wind Ensemble, appreciates the close-knit community that keeps the band going through long practices.

“The Wind Ensemble is such a great program to be a part of,” Reynolds said.

The marching band music that Reynolds, Hyde and others create is often heard around the school, whether it be on the morning of football games or during rehearsals in the Performing Arts Center. Unfortunately, the band was unable to practice or play on Decatur’s home field until very recently due to its turf renovation.

Because of this, the band often practiced on the Winnona Park Elementary School field. Winnona’s field may be a large enough space, but it’s wider, less measured out area lacks the same environment that the band will perform in on the Decatur field. Many other sports also had to find alternative spaces to practice on during the start of the 2018-2019 school year.

The Marching Band and Color Guard during their first practice of the school year that took place on home field. Photo courtesy of The Decatur High School Band Instagram

The Wind Ensemble is now back on home turf and will be performing at Decatur’s first true home game. Although they have been temporarily displaced, Decatur’s band is still hard at work representing Decatur and preparing to win more awards.