Santa Fe band: the best in the land

Flute+soloist-+Breanna+Mcalla

Sherri Mcnaught

Flute soloist- Breanna Mcalla

Zachary Mcnaught, Howler Staff Writer

For the first time in 14 years, the Edmond Santa Fe Marching Band placed in the top six at the Oklahoma Band Masters Association (OBA) state marching competition.

After three months and over 400 hours of rehearsal, the Edmond Santa Fe marching band perfected their craft. Keeping their toes high, not bending their knees, and keeping their horns up are all finite details of what makes a high school marching band place well at competition.

“The amount of work that all of us have put into this season is more than any other marching season I’ve been a part of,’’ said Carter Davis, senior trombone player.

All the hard work paid off based on the results of several competitions this year. First, the marching band received third place at the Owasso Invitational, beating Union and Jenks high school for the first time in the school’s history. 

Next, the band won the Mustang Invitational for the second time in a row, marking the first time the Edmond Santa Fe marching band won the competition back-to-back. 

Lastly, the band traveled to Broken Arrow for the Oklahoma Band Masters Association (OBA) State Marching Championship and got the highest score in the band’s history (86.6).

“What the Edmond Santa Fe band did this year was truly historic for not just their school but also all of Edmond,” said Edmond Memorial High School’s head band director Jeff Jahnke.

Sixth place is the second-highest ranking for an Edmond high school marching band ever, falling just behind Edmond Memorial’s marching band in 2018. Also, 86.6 is the highest score ever achieved by an Edmond school at the OBA state marching championships.

The success of the Santa Fe marching band can be easily credited to the two-year head band director Dane Romano. Edmond Santa Fe High School first participated in OBA in 1998. Between 1998 and 2020, judges gave Santa Fe’s marching band an average score of 66.25. In the last two years under Romano, the school has an average score of 81.2 at OBA.

“What he has done with the program is astounding,” said Sarah Neely, Santa Fe’s former band director. Neely is now the school’s head orchestra director. 

The marching band’s next event will be at the London New Years’ Day Parade on January 1, 2023. 

(all scoring information comes from Oklahoma Band Central)