Flower Mound's Marching Band: Success in Harmony

Harmony happens when things are in agreement — when hundreds of small pieces work together as one.

Sped up, the Flower Mound High School marching band musicians look like a murmuration, but broken down into individual parts you can clearly see, "It is a big big production," said band dad Matt deBlonk, while standing on the side of one of the two semis that haul Flower Mound's equipment.

Flower Mound is a dominant force in marching band, and in 2016 the team earned the 6A state championship title.

"I sit at competitions next to people who don't have a kid in band. They're like, 'This is our Saturday night entertainment,'" said band mom Trisha Myler, with a laugh. "They're that good!"

Flower Mound's band has almost 400 kids, and they come with supportive parents.

"So it's just something that as a parent, I, and the rest of this army behind you, can fill in and help the kids to have as great an experience as they could possibly have," deBlonk said.

"Yeah, my parents are extremely invested in the band program. They're obsessed," said Flower Mound senior Drew Myler. "They watch it on YouTube. They watch other bands."

Drew and his peers are judged on how they march, how they sound, and how they look — all of which are a matter of opinion.

"It's not a sport. The ball doesn't go in the basket, or it doesn't go over the line. So there's gray area," said Flower Mound band director Brent Biskup.

Biskup said all of his great marchers have to start as great musicians, and then they learn how to stand.

"And then it becomes, and then you move your foot like this, and then you move the next foot like this," Biskup explained.

"It's really hard to correlate actually playing and moving your feet in time, believe it or not, so that in itself takes like a lot of thought," Drew added.

But they keep adding layers, and all season they make improvements to their drill.

"The answer is, 'Yes, it's done,'" said Biskup, regarding the drill the group was about to perform at the UIL demonstration in Justin. "Except last night in rehearsal we changed it," he said with a laugh.

"It's pretty exciting. We've put a lot of work and time into this," Drew said.

Drew has technically been preparing for this since sixth grade. Now a senior, his skill and hard work are honored by getting to perform a solo in their drill.

"It's supposed to be kind of a little tone shift. It goes from like a beautiful ballad to this saxophone-type freeness," Drew said.

So how did he do?

"He did really, really well," said his mom, Trisha Myler. "We heard it when it was all squeaks! Thinking, 'This isn't gonna work,'" she said with a laugh.

Flower Mound will next compete at the Grand National Championships in Indianapolis in the band's last contest of the season.

"Yeah, it's pretty exciting," Drew said. "It's the biggest competition of the year."

And it will judge hundreds of musicians on their ability to work in harmony.

"I've just always loved music, and to be a part of something this big, I don't know, it's just really cool, I think," Drew said.

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