High school marching bands in Las Cruces wrapped up the season at NMSU’s Tournament of Bands.

Students from the Oñate High School Royal Knight Regiment compete in the Tournament of Bands at NMSU’s Aggie Memorial Stadium.

During the month of October, the Oñate High School Royal Knight Regiment competed in the annual Zia Marching Fiesta in Albuquerque, NM. Oñate placed second overall and won the award for Highest Visual Effect in both the preliminary and final competitions.

On October 27th, Centennial, Las Cruces, Mayfield and Oñate high schools competed amongst 32 other bands from around the region. Las Cruces and Oñate both advanced to the finals with their preliminary scores. Las Cruces High placed ninth, and Oñate finished in third place and received the coveted Gregg Randall Award of Excellence for New Mexico’s top band.

Students from the Oñate High School Royal Knight Regiment take a break from practice in their classroom.

“It is the countless hours put in by dedicated students, staff, directors and parents that make the competitive marching season such a success,” said Superintendent of Las Cruces Public Schools Greg Ewing. “We are so lucky to have these wonderful students who are so enthusiastic about music, and who continue to set the bar higher each year. It’s clear that each student worked hard in practice, because they always shine during competition.”

The continuous effort to get the marching production polished and consistent is the biggest goal for each program. Music directors work very hard at coming up with a product that will be appreciated by students, schools and members of the community. Directors often prepare the planning and design process for the next marching band season immediately after the current one ends. Directors work to secure licensing and focus on music, drill, choreography and the production process.

Students from the Las Cruces High School Marching Band compete in the Tournament of Bands at NMSU’s Aggie Memorial Stadium.

Students arrive just before school starts and the production begins with hours of planning, rehearsing and performances to perfect their product leading into the competitive season. Having completed marching band season, many music students will now move into concert band, jazz band, winter-guard and indoor percussion.

— Samantha Lewis, LCPS Public Relations Coordinator, 575-527-5946, slewis@lcps.net