Pride of Salem Band Program makes school history

When John Wright became the Band Director at Salem High School four years ago, his main objective was to help the Pride of Salem Marching Band reach its full potential. Under his leadership, the band has since won both local and state competitions.

In October, the Pride of Salem Marching band participated in the State Marching Assessment at City Stadium in Lynchburg. On March 5, the Salem High School Symphonic participated in the State Concert Assessment at Blacksburg High School. Both groups received a Superior Rating, a first in Salem High history.

“We have the best staff that works with these amazing students. It is such an honor to work in a school system that supports the performing arts,” Wright said. “We could not do the things we do without their support. We can never show enough appreciation for the dedication and support from the parents and band boosters that do so many things for the program.”

A notable difference between this particular group of band students compared to previous ones is that the senior Class of 2020 has been with Wright for the last six years. Before coming to Salem High, Wright served as the Band Director at Andrew Lewis Middle School for two years.

One of the best compliments any educator can give their students is to praise their dedication and perseverance. Because of the amount of work that is put in every year, Wright is never surprised when the Pride of Salem Marching Band exceeds their own expectations.

“There are no words to describe how proud I am of these students. I have the best job in the world because I get to go to work with a smile on my face,” Wright said. “The support from the school system and community is remarkable. Again, without that, we could not accomplish everything we do. There is no other place I would want to be the band director.”

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