The Saluting America’s Band Directors project is assembling band directors from across the country to march January 1 under the theme, “We teach music. We teach life.”
Eugene F. O’Brien, a coordinator of Music and Marching Band Director in Everett Massachusetts and Everett High School, has been selected to join a marching band of band directors up to 300 strong from across the country in the Pasadena Rose Parade on January 1, 2022. The band will accompany a colorful, animated float along the 5.5-mile parade route.
The Saluting America’s Band Directors parade entry will convey the theme, “We teach music. We teach life.” in recognizing the extraordinary dedication and accomplishments of band directors and music educators everywhere. Throughout their careers, the music educators in this band have collectively mentored and taught hundreds of thousands—if not millions—of students. These professionals not only teach and direct music, they teach about life itself.
According to O’Brien, “I am truly humbled to be nominated to march in the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year’s Day, to represent the City of Everett, the Everett Crimson Tide Marching Band and the Everett Public Schools at this spectacular event. I have been blessed for the past 25 years to have wonderful students, fellow colleagues and wonderful support by School, City and State Leaders.”
The band will be directed by nationally known music educator and innovative band director Jon Waters, who will also direct rehearsals and a Band-fest performance in Pasadena. A custom musical piece for the band has been written by Bob Thurston, a published composer, former band director,
and retired Air Force staff arranger.
The sponsoring organization behind the Saluting America’s Band Directors project is the Michael D. Sewell Memorial Foundation, based in Pickerington, Ohio, is. The foundation was created to recognize and carry on the work of the late Mike Sewell, who dedicated his life to the school and community music programs in Pickerington and the Central Ohio area for almost 40 years.