AHS band to perform at Universal Studios

Published 12:02 am Saturday, April 11, 2015

Andalusia High School’s A Sound Tradition will head to Orlando to perform at Universal Studios. | File photo

Andalusia High School’s A Sound Tradition will head to Orlando to perform at Universal Studios. | File photo

Having to get up at the crack of dawn for band practice will soon pay off for members of Andalusia High School’s A Sound Tradition.

The marching band will travel to Orlando, Fla., next week to play in the All-Star Parade at Universal Studios.

AHS marching band director Bennie Shellhouse said the band will leave late Tuesday night and drive overnight to Orlando.

Shellhouse said the first few days will be filled with park fun.

“The first day we’ll do Busch Gardens, the second day we’ll do Universal Studios and Island of Adventures,” he said. “We’ll do those two parks for three days.”

The AHS band will be the only band in the parade, where Shellhouse said it will be playing for an estimated 50,000-60,000 people who are visiting the park.

“We’ll do it midday on Friday,” he said.

AHS was chosen after Shellhouse sent a video of its halftime show, and this trip signifies the band director’s fifth to the Florida city.

“They have competed in things in Orlando since Mr. Grimes led the band,” he said. “Every other year we go on a trip. They’ve been doing it for the last 25-26 years.”

Each band member had to pay for half of the trip. The other half is being paid for by the band booster’s fundraisers.

Luckily, the band got a discount on park tickets, Shellhouse said.

In addition to the parks, the band will go see the Blue Man Group while on the trip.

The most important part about the trip is letting the kids get some exposure, Shellhouse said.

“When I started doing this years ago, you do it as a reward for the kids, but at the same time, it’s important to get the exposure,” he said. “There are a lot of people who don’t know where Andalusia is, but they’re going to know that Andalusia has a pretty good band when they hear us.

“The last time we went down, we played God bless America, and the people just loved it,” he said “There were people who were very supportive. We had great support from the crowd.”

The band will be in Orlando until April 18.