(Broken Arrow) 2013 is turning out to be an incredible year for 262 students at Broken Arrow High School. You could even say they're living in Utopia.
BAHS' "Pride of Broken Arrow" marching band and color guard, a unit that has already won two Bands of America (BOA) Grand National Championship titles (2006 and 2011), has competed against well over 100 marching bands from all over the United States over the last two weekends, in two BOA Super-Regional competitions in St. Louis and Atlanta.
And they out-scored every one of those units to claim overall champion gold medals at both shows.
In fact, the band scored 94.4 out of 100 in Atlanta, the highest score recorded at that competition, which has been around since 1993.
And, they also took top honors in every so-called "sub-caption,' winning Best Music, Best Visual program and Best General Effect.
The Pride's 2013 production is titled "Utopia," and features music from American composer Aaron Copland.
Given its success so far, Broken Arrow would be an odds-on favorite to win another BOA Grand National title this year. except. Except they're not going to Indianapolis' Lucas Oil Stadium to compete in Grand Nationals this year.
BA Pride director Darrin Davis says they opted instead to vary the educational and travel experience for their students in 2013-14.
Instead of returning to Indy this year and seeking another national championship, Davis and his staff decided to go to Atlanta and compete in the Georgia Dome Super Regional against a lineup of other strong bands from Florida and the Cobb County, Georgia area, both of which are home to many historically-strong competitive high school marching band programs.
And, there's yet another big trip to come for some Pride members.
Broken Arrow's top concert wind ensemble will travel to New York City in the spring to perform in a music festival at Carnegie Hall.