GHS marching band competes for first time in 20 years

Published 2:27 pm Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Greenville High School Tiger Pride Marching Band competed for the first time in 20 years at the Phenix City Invitational Sept. 24.

Two sections make up most band competitions that include a festival section and a competition section.

“Festival ranks bands superior or excellent,” band director Jason Tucker said. “They don’t rank the band in any category. Festivals are fundraisers for the sponsoring team, and they want everyone to come next year. However, competitions are a little bit hard to compete at.”

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As for the competition, there is no money to be made, but numerical scores to earn for the bands that participate.

The bands are divided into different classes based on their sizes. Greenville ranked as a class A band, which is the smallest size, and competed against five other bands in its class.

“In the past 20 years, the band hasn’t been in any competitions but they have been at festivals,” Tucker said. “Our goal was to be at an actual competition, go and compete and see how we would do as a group. The kids worked hard and we pushed a good bit.”

Each section of the band is given a score between one and four, one being superior, two being excellent, three being good and four being fair.

“We did very well,” Tucker said. “The band made straight ones, and that level is a huge accomplishment. At the end of the night, we got best in class. We’re just excited about the new direction we’re going in, and we wanted to get the word out to he community.”

Being his first year as the band director at Greenville High School, Tucker believes in competing.

“I believe in putting yourself out there, and it helps you get better,” Tucker said. “It tells you what you did right and wrong and gives you suggestions on how to do better. Besides just me telling the kids, it’s a judge, which is usually a retired band director telling you the same thing and giving suggestions on how to fix it, clean it and improve it. The whole experience makes the band better.”

The band will be competing at two more competitions throughout the season, and Tucker feels proud at how the band is representing the community.

“I think the band, especially a high school band in any city, is a great public relations outlet for the city,” Tucker said.  “When we go somewhere, we are the Tiger Pride Marching Band, and we represent the city, and the city should know how well the students do at promoting the city we live and the community.”