Lafayette Marching Band Wins 19th State Final


Michelle Dunlap

Awards Ceremony. Photo credit to Michelle Dunlap.

Ella Johnson, Editor-in-Chief

Lafayette Marching Band was named Grand Champion of the class 5A division and took home the Governor’s Cup at the 2017 KMEA finals competition, their final score being 92.95. This is their 19th winning of state finals.

Fourth place went to Larry A. Ryle with a final score of 86.7. Major rival Madison Central came third with a score of 90.45 and second place at a score of 90.55 to North Hardin. Bands are judged based on four categories. Music performance, visual performance, music effect and visual effect.

Competition was tight this year, North Hardin and Madison Central have both beaten out Lafayette at finals for the past two years. The other bands performed spectacularly, their shows having engaging and well executed themes. Ryle’s show was “The Rising” their show featuring white statues that rose into the air, while “To the Moon and Back” was Madison Central’s. Their show highlighted a love story between a color guard member and a marcher. North Hardin’s show was called “From Darkness” and utilized huge prop flowers which changed colors when spun around.

Lafayette’s show titled “The Raven” was quite different from their usual themes. In staying in tune with the school and marching uniform colors, Lafayette’s recent shows has centered around themes pertaining to red, white, and blue, to make visual sense. This year was a complete 180 for the band, having a dark show inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s famous poem by the same name.

The band certainly appeared like ravens, in dark uniforms with bird eyes on their hats and large black plumes. Entering the field section by section from, seemingly, out of nowhere, heads bobbing and twisting, they stormed the field in the way only a flock of ominous birds can.

It was a very special show this year, especially to soloist Isabel Washington. “For me specifically, being able to be a soloist after being in the color guard for only three years definitely made it special. It was cool to know that I was putting something unique into the show and that the staff trusted me with such a role.”

“It was pretty unreal,” Drum Major Caleb Matocha remarks about how he felt hearing North Hardin being announced as second place, knowing that Lafayette had won first place. “I couldn’t even breathe.”

Abbey Kestel, second year as a member of the color guard, had an optimistic view on the final outlook of the season from the very beginning. “I will never forget this show, the people are just great and I knew we could do it from the start!”