Brandeis Band Wins $5,000 Grant
By Alissa Reinhard
This December, the Brandeis High School Band was named the Thursday Night Light’s Band Grant contest winner. Nearly 170,000 people voted for the “Spirit of Brandeis” Bronco Band. The band won by a wide margin – nearly 100,000 votes separated them from the runner up.
Richard Herrera, Director of Bands at Brandeis for 10 years, since the school opened in 2008, was blown away by the support.
“We have always had a wonderful following from both the Brandeis Band Boosters and the Brandeis Community, but to find out we won with 169,574 votes, I was astounded and overwhelmed by the number of votes and support of our band by other voters not in the Brandeis community,” Herrera said.
This is actually the third time the Broncos have been awarded the TNL Grant. The process is open to all bands part of the Thursday Night Light’s Area Football Game telecast on MY35 television station. Each band is given a code for viewers to text the station and vote for their favorite band. The winning band with the most votes is announced at the end of the football season.
In 2016, the Band won by a margin of 11,000 votes and in 2013, the first year they won, the margin was 16,000.
“To all who voted for the ‘Spirit of Brandeis’ Bronco Band I say a heartfelt thank you for the support of very hard working and talented students,” said Herrera. “I thank MY35 and Sprouts Farmers Market for sponsoring the TNL Grant. The generosity of the community is well noted by our band staff, BHS Administration, and Northside ISD.”
The grant will be used for music and equipment needed by the band program. Now in his 34th year as a band instructor, Herrera couldn’t be more proud of the entire Brandeis Band community.
“The best thing I enjoy most about being the band director at Brandeis is the students,” he said. “They are a joy to work for and work so hard to be the best they can be. The results of individual accolades show their hard work and dedication to the program; 54 selected to All District, 39 selected to All Region, 19 selected to the All Region Full Orchestra, 22 selected to All Area, and 5 selected to All State. Our younger students did well also; 13 selected to the All Region Freshmen Band, as well as numerous Marching Band and Concert Band awards.”
The Band has an exciting 2018 in store. They will soon be traveling to Orlando for their spring band trip in April where they will visit Disneyworld Parks and Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure. The Varsity Concert Band will also perform at the Tobin Center in May as part of the YOSA Invitational Program where bands and orchestras are invited to attend after submitting a recorded performance.
“I’m looking forward to a very rewarding spring semester for our staff and students,” said Herrera.