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Redcoat Band Makes School History

The Gainesville Redcoat Band made local history by becoming the first band in the high school’s history to qualify for the Area Marching Finals on November 3rd. Twenty-six bands from 5 UIL regions competed in the Area B competition after earning first division ratings at their respective contests.

“We were honored to be included with the bands that were competing at the contest,” said Director of Bands, Russ Rutherford. “Many of them have long and consistent histories of excellence.”

In order to advance to finals, the band would have to outscore at least 16 of the bands that were there. “I have learned, over years,” said Rutherford, “never to underestimate what hard working students can accomplish.”

The Redcoat Band had to overcome a lack of a marching percussion section, a smaller guard than the other groups, and a lack of experience. Out of the 50 students in the program, 30 of them were in their first year of high school marching band.

“I started the year by telling the students that if they worked hard enough, they could overcome their lack of experience. I must admit, though, I am surprised at the level they were able to achieve.”

The band ranked 10th over-all, enough to qualify them for the finals, and ranked higher than several outstanding programs. “I am extremely proud of them, not just for their success, but for the way they function as a group, the way they behave, and the way they hold themselves to a high standard. I am so fortunate to be able to work with such and outstanding staff, and with the support that we receive from our administration,” Rutherford said.