The Daviess County High School Band of Pride, the Owensboro High School marching band and the Owensboro Catholic Marching Aces will be performing Saturday at the KMEA State Semifinals. All three bands placed in the top eight at their respective Regional Quarterfinals sites, earning all teams the chance to compete this weekend for a coveted spot in the state finals competition at the University of Kentucky.
The DCHS “Band of Pride” will compete Saturday in the Class AAAAA Semifinals at Kroger Field in Lexington. The band is scheduled to perform 13th of 16 competing teams and will begin their performance at 2:15 p.m.
The OHS marching band will compete Saturday in the Class AAAA Semifinals at Madison Southern High School in Berea, Ky. OHS will compete 5th out of 16 teams, and their performance is scheduled for 11 a.m.
The OCHS Marching Aces will compete Saturday in the Class A Semifinals at Frederick Douglass High School in Lexington, Ky. The Marching Aces will perform 11th in the lineup of 16 teams competing, and they are scheduled to take the field at 1:45 p.m.
This year marks the 15th consecutive State Championship Semifinals in which the Marching Aces have qualified to compete.
OHS held a send-off for their marching band at 4:30 p.m. before the band departed for Berea Friday. Director Abe Barr said hundreds of friends, family members and faculty showed up to wish the band good luck at their competition.
Barr said OHS has worked overtime this week in preparation for competition, upping practices to four times a week and going until 6:30 or 7 p.m. most days. As far as competition is concerned, Barr said this year’s state semifinals will be one for the books.
“The AAAA is the strongest it’s ever been. We placed in the top four out of eight in our region, so we got a good draw,” Barr said. “It’s possible we could qualify for state finals–it just depends how well we perform. It’s going to be really close.”
DCHS’s band director, Karen Alward, said her band is very excited for their AAAAA competition tomorrow and are ready to give their best performance of the season.
“We are presenting a unique approach to Aaron Copland’s ‘Appalachian Spring’ and Leonard Bernstein’s ‘Make Our Garden Grow,’” Alward said of DCHS’s upcoming “Field of Promise” performance.
“Ultimately, the show features the idea that with love and care, there’s this young and thriving generation who will settle in and bring back the Americana of ages past with one foot firmly planted in nostalgia and the other pointed toward progress,” Alward said.
Barr said his band has received so much support from both parents and OHS faculty, they feel a responsibility in playing and performing in a way that makes everyone around them proud.
“It’s been an incredible season,” Barr said. “These kids aren’t performing for themselves.”
OCHS’s band director could not be reached for comment, but the OCHS central office staff said the Marching Aces were on the road to Lexington.