Sighting: Chris Neal

Pride alumnus (both as a marcher and grad student) Chris Neal is getting some attention as director of the marching band at McMurry University, says the Abilene Reporter News:

McMurry University’s marching band is featured in national publication Halftime Magazine in an article about marching programs at small colleges.

The article chronicles band director Chris Neal’s time at the school, along with the experiences of other small college band directors in the state. The story says that Neal worked with the 300-member Pride of Oklahoma Marching Band for several years, including writing the drill for the band’s 2001 National Championship show at the Orange Bowl, before coming to McMurry.

The Abilene band is a something of a contrast—Neal’s original roster had 29 names on it, the article says.

But the band, which now has 75 members, is a study in the importance of individual contribution, an important success factor, Neal said.

And it is growing. More than one in every 20 students at McMurry participates in the band, including 10 percent of the school’s freshman class.

The story from the paper also has a link to the full article in Halftime Magazine, but we’re sending you there to give the paper a little love for bringing it to our attention. Congrats, Chris!