SEUS honors bands across the Southeast

by Cailey Wright

468 students from across the southeast flocked to Troy University for the 50th year of the SouthEastern United States Honor Band. 

SEUS was started by the School of Music’s namesake, Dr. John M. Long, in 1973. After all this time, students still learn musical skills and form friendships on Troy University’s campus.

“I hope that they take back some new or improved musical skills, and they can take those skills back to their home bands,” Dr. Mark Walker, the Director of Bands, said. “I hope they take back some friendships and some relationships and kind of a new perspective on playing music and enjoying music with other people.” 

Tyler Whitaker, a trumpet player, came with his band from his high school in Georgia to participate in his first SEUS, an experience that is anticipated by many high school musicians. Whitaker explained that SEUS was an experience he will cherish for a lifetime. 

“The overall experience was amazing, like it’s something that you never get to do every day,” Whitaker said. “It will be on my record forever.”

The students learned from four guest conductors from around the nation. They are Dr. Marcellus Brown from Idaho State University, Dr. Dustin Cypher from Eastern New Mexico State University and Zachary Harris from William Carey University. 

The students also learned under one guest composer, Tyler Arcari, who happens to be a Troy alumni. 

The John M. Long School of Music Prides itself on being a driving force in music education. For that reason, many of the students in attendance consider coming to Troy University.

“I heard they have a really good program; an amazing program, amazing people, kind people, and a lot of hard-working people,” Whitaker said.  ‘Honestly, it’s on my bucket list. It’ll be one of my top 10.”

SEUS concluded on February 4 with the National Band Association induction for the Hall of Fame for Distinguished Conductors. The hall of fame is located in HAL Hall. 

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