For Many in Bellevue Band, Trip to Disney Will Be First Outside Area
The Bellevue High School band is traveling to Disney World this month which, the first time in 20 years that the band has traveled outside of the area.
Scott Reed runs the band at Bellevue and said that the trip had been planned since last year and that the musicians are thrilled at the chance to perform in the Magic Kingdom.
“The kids are really excited. We've got 66 kids in our middle school through high school band program and the fact that 46 of those are able to go is a really big deal to them. A lot of these kids haven't been out of our area. They've been to the tri-state or regional at best. So the fact that we can get them out and expose them to a little more is pretty cool,” Reed said.
On April 12, kids ranging from 7th to 12th grade, will make the trip.
Bellevue auditioned for the performance and was accepted last year and since then the school has been practicing for their big chance as well as raising funds for the trip.
As for the music, Reed said the students are playing songs that many will find familiar in an Orlando setting.
“We are rocking out Disney tunes,” Reed said. “We've got 'Let It Go' because all the little kids love Frozen. We've got music from The Incredibles, Elvis Presley music, 'Secret Agent Man' and then one that is just a compilation of a bunch of different songs.”
The band will be in Florida for four nights and five days. The school raised its own funds for the trip.
“We had a lot of very generous donations from people like the Bellevue Education Foundation, the Bellevue Alumni Association, we have a long list of donors that make the trip possible. The kids raised a lot of the money too so we have a $30,000 trip total,” said Reed.
The band will perform in the downtown Disney area in the shopping district, and hope to have a good crowd of people who are out at lunch and shopping during the day. For many of the kids involved, it will be something of an adventure of a lifetime.
“Most of these kids haven't been exposed to a whole lot. I'm happy for them. I've been on many day trips with the school, but this is the furthest away I've gone and we will have 46 kids and about 25 adults,” Reed said.
The Bellevue band program has grown the last couple of years, thanks in large part to the planned trip to Disney.
“I knew I would get some kids to stick around the band program when we first started doing this just to have this chance to go on this trip and I think they will stick around longer once they do it. I think that they will enjoy it,” the band teacher, Scott Reed said.
The Bellevue Band of Gold had a successful season, placing first in competitions and receiving numerous awards. “We won quite a bit of awards and it has been about 20 years since the band program has been on a successful level like that,” Reed said.
The band has won Best Percussion, Best Music, Best Color-Guard, won first-place in their first show of the year and won second-place the rest of the year.
“We're getting there,” Reed said. “The kids are working really hard to make stuff happen.”
There are 10 seniors in the band program this year which is a large amount for a school the size of Bellevue. Reed and his staff plan on organizing another trip in four years so that the kids who are freshmen will be seniors and will have another chance to go before they graduate.
Written by Bryan Burke, associate editor