Keller earns narrow victory at HEB

Sept. 30, 2019 at 1:58 a.m. CT

Keller earns narrow victory at HEB

By Justin Bullock

Keller came away with the tight first place finish to mark their second consecutive victory this weekend. The band also took the music and effect captions in the process. Marcus came in second winning the visual caption award while Waxahachie finished in third for the weekend.

There was a lot to take away from HEB this weekend. The biggest thing that we saw was how close the top bands were in points. While Keller was crowned champion, it didn’t come easy as Marcus was just a fraction of a point behind. Waxahachie beat Prosper by a similarly close margin to take the third place position. Since all four of these bands are returning to Pennington field next week for the BOA regional, they have this week to assess how they did and the things to fix, while the competition gets much more more difficult with bands like Hebron and Flower Mound in attendance.

Keller performs at the HEB Marching Contest on Sept. 28, 2019, at Pennington Field in Bedford, Texas. // Photo by Justin Bullock
Keller (82.75) really took advantage of the effect caption in their show through the use of lights and more hand held props, to their color guard creating a sense of wonder. Keller always has a big sound throughout the low brass and high brass, but more notable was a beautiful brass quintet that sold the show musically.

Second-place Marcus (82.65) saw their biggest strength in the visual caption. Marcus performed first in the top five of finals and held their place till the end. With multiple color guard costumes showing each “princess” on the field and the eye-catching story book props that move throughout the show, it was a visual delight. The group should have a clear understanding of what they’re excelling at, and what that can improve on as the season continues.

With bright flashy uniforms and props, Waxahachie (79.80) has taken a new approach on the fairly traditional band that we are used to. The jazzy show with bright greens and yellows is really brought out with the piano, electric bass, and drum set pulled out onto a prop, helping paint a picture of what the show is about. The third place finish for the band first appearance at the HEB marching contest was a success with beating previous winners in Prosper. As they move into the rest of the season they will be a band to watch going into the next few weeks.

Coming off of a national finals appearance last season, this is our first look at the “new” Prosper (79.50) as old director John Alstrin moves to the director of fine arts role in the district. This was new director of bands Brandon Holt’s first opportunity to show us a new style of Prosper. In a bit of a departure from years past, we see no props to shape and sculpt the field, with the big band stretched from endzone to endzone. The show titled “Reign” shows us a darker side with a dark red color scheme and masked color guard. The band will continue their season next week back on Pennington Field at the Bedford Regional.