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The Student News Site of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School

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The Student News Site of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School

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Caught+in+the+Herd.+On+the+streets+of+New+York+City+Melody+Lynton%2C+Dylan+Morales%2C+Esther+Bang%2C+Jonathan+Kokulyansky%2C+Nicolas+Guadagno%2C+and+Josiah+Jimenez+march+the+Macy%E2%80%99s+Day+Thanksgiving+Parade+on+Nov.+23.+The+band+followed+this+year%E2%80%99s+theme%2C+%E2%80%9CPolar+Express%2C%E2%80%9D+by+creating+their+uniforms+to+resemble+the+outfits+worn+in+the+movie.+
Caitlin Wong
Caught in the Herd. On the streets of New York City Melody Lynton, Dylan Morales, Esther Bang, Jonathan Kokulyansky, Nicolas Guadagno, and Josiah Jimenez march the Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Parade on Nov. 23. The band followed this year’s theme, “Polar Express,” by creating their uniforms to resemble the outfits worn in the movie.

Eagle Regiment performs in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

The Eagle Regiment performed in the nationally televised Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Thursday, Nov. 23 in New York City. The Eagle Regiment was one of 10 bands selected to perform in the parade, and the entire program—160 students—participated in the performance.

The Eagle Regiment is the first band ever selected from Broward County Public Schools to participate in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and represented Florida’s high school bands.

The band has known about their invitation to perform in the parade since 2020, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they had not been able to attend until this year. The students practiced intently and excitedly with new routines that followed the theme of the year, Polar Express.

This is not the first nationally televised event the band has been invited to, as they performed in the London New Year’s Day Parade on Jan. 1, 2023. They have had their routine prepared since their London performance, but began rehearsing it at the beginning of this year.

“Being able to perform in front of millions of spectators was exciting,” librarian Esther Bang said. “Though the London Parade was an unforgettable experience, this was much larger than anything we have ever done before. The audience was worldwide. To be prepared for this unique opportunity, the Eagle Regiment practiced with much intent to wow the crowd.”

The band rehearsed weekly after school and on the weekends.

The student work that went into the rehearsal process was a group effort and included picking the music, creating visual effects and deciding on the performance’s choreography.

“Our goal was to put out a performance unlike no other; we wanted to be able to showcase the talent in Stoneman Douglas High School and the extreme talent from this organization,” sophomore Adam Rivero said.

The theme sparked excitement and nostalgia from participants, as well as inspiring the band to bring the theme into their performance.

The band premiered their performance during a send-off event in Cumber Stadium on Nov. 17 to student, teacher and parent spectators.

Their Thanksgiving Day performance only lasted a couple of minutes, but they created train props to carry around, designed their uniforms to resemble the uniforms from the “Polar Express”  movie and chose music inspired by the movie and the holiday spirit.

“There’s just not as much pressure behind the performance in London as it is in New York; the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is regarded as the biggest parade every year,” Band Director Steve Rivero said. “And it was amazing, I think we accomplished the goal of being memorable.”

This story was originally published in the December 2023 Eagle Eye print edition.

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About the Contributors
Lyla Sachs, Arts & Leisure editor
Lyla Sachs is a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. She is the arts & leisure editor. Lyla enjoys listening to music and reading in her spare time.
Caitlin Wong, Reporter
Caitlin Wong is a freshman at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. She is a first year reporter. In her free time, she likes to dance, listen to music, clean, organize and go shopping.
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