CHICAGO HEIGHTS | The Marian Catholic marching band took home their 33rd state championship Saturday in Hancock Stadium at Illinois State University in Blooming, Ill., the school announced.
The band won their class 3A in the preliminary competition and went on to finals winning with top honors and finishing in first place from the field of 45 bands. Marian Catholic won with the largest point spread in the history of the contest.
“We are very proud of the students and their great accomplishment,” said Greg Bimm, band director. “Our students are intelligent, dedicated and hardworking and they prepared very well for the contest. Approaching a major contest like this while knowing there is a 32-year unbeaten streak certainly brings significant pressure. The kids took this in stride and went into the day with a sense of calm confidence.”
The band implements student leadership within the program, creating an atmosphere in which students take ownership of their accomplishments, the release states.
“It is fulfilling to see students who could not even play an instrument three months ago, work with their peers to become accomplished performers who can stand on a state, regional, and national stage and find success,” said Bobby Lambert, assistant band director.
The next big challenge the Marian Catholic marching band is preparing for is the national championship in two weeks. There will be 92 bands from across the United States in Indianapolis vying for a spot in the top 12 and a chance at the overall championship.
“We are approaching nationals with an unprecedented 28-year unbroken streak of top 12 appearances that we hope to extend,” Bimm said.
The Marian Catholic band program has a reputation as one of the most outstanding marching bands in the United States. Over the past 20 years the bands have earned hundreds of awards and honors. The Marian Catholic band’s educational and leadership philosophies have been used as models for band programs in nearly every state of the union, the release states.