Bainbridge High School Band performs in National Cherry Blossom Festival

Published 5:14 pm Tuesday, April 16, 2024

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The Bainbridge High School Band gave a once-in-a-lifetime performance on Saturday, as they were the feature band in this year’s National Cherry Blossom Festival parade in Washington DC. Students departed Decatur County last Wednesday, escorted by Decatur County Sheriff’s deputies. After a few days of practice and sightseeing around the Capitol, the BHS Band would finally perform Saturday morning.

BHS Band Director James Sewell spoke to the Post-Searchlight before heading to DC, and explained how they were chosen for the parade.

“Basically what you do is… you apply, and then, after you apply, they ask you for a resume and all kinds of stuff, and then they’ll send back an invitation when you’re selected,” he said. Sewell further explained that the festival officials will look at a band’s prior record and performances to select the bands.

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“So our resume of the past, from doing Macy’s Parade, Philadelphia parade and all that, it earned us the chance to do this. It’s quite an honor to be able to do it.”

“I feel like it’s, I guess, the most recognition that we’re getting,” said band member Brooklyn Wade.

After being chosen for the parade, the band next had to submit proposals for what songs they would perform, which would have to be approved in advance, depending on royalties. Ultimately, “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” was chosen. All in all, it took over a year of planning to bring this to fruition.

“It takes a while, especially when you have to take off so many people, you have to make sure that you have planned every detail,” Sewell said.

“All this choreography, I guess you could call it, is new to us,” said Eli Logue.

Sewell praised the students’ efforts at learning their new routine for the parade. “They just jumped right in on it,” he said. “When they know something’s coming up like this, they don’t waste any time. They dive in.”