By Tamas Mondovics

The mission of the Florida Bandmasters Association (FBA) is to promote and support band programs in the state of Florida by providing opportunities for in-service growth, program evaluation, and student performance.

True to its mission, local bands had a chance to measure up their musical skills and talents during the annual FBA District 7 Music Performance Assessment competition held last month at Riverview High School.

Including Durant, the event featured 27 high schools boasting of nearly 2,700 student-musicians also representing Bloomingdale Newsome, Riverview, East Bay, Lennard, Armwood, Strawberry Crest and Brandon, to name a few who have performed with the highest measure of commitment, dedication and heart.

The six judges, Tom Viking (Marching/Maneuvering), Dominick Eggen (General Effect), Bradley Wharton and Terry Pattishall (Music) Cathy Kersten (Auxiliary) and John Keon (Percussion), rated each band in five categories.

At the end of the day, 17 bands earned a superior rating including Durant’s 89-member Cougar Pride band led by Bruce M. Herrmann Jr.

Newsome Wolfpack led by Michael J. Miller; Bloomingdale Rajun’ Bulls led by Jon Sever; Brandon Eagles led by Revae Douglas and Riverview Blue Coat Regiment led by
Trevor Butts and Travis Miller have also earned superior across the board.

The Armwood Hawk Pride led by Logan Sorey and the Strawberry Crest Marching Chargers led by Cheri A. Sleeper both earned excellent followed by the East Bay Marching Indians led by Evan Neidringhaus and Lennard Marching Longhorns led by Kelly Montero earned good.

None of the bands—from the 40-member Middleton High School Marching Tiger Band led by Mr. Bennie B. Leverett, which earned a superior rating, to the 213-member Bloomingdale Rajun’ Bulls—earned less than a good rating, demonstrating the caliber and hard work of all District 7 student-musicians and band directors.

FBAs are the accepted standard of evaluation for high school marching bands. For a full list of results, visit

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