Madonna's Super Bowl half-time show might not be the first place you would look for an Indiana school connection, but I had a suspicion while watching that I could find one there.
Thanks to the wonder of Google, I came across this blog from Douglass Gaking, a music teacher at St. Thomas Aquinas School in Indianapolis and percussion director at Muncie Central and Triton Central high school. As you might suspect, he has the details on the percussionists backing up the Material Girl.
Turns out the drummers came from four Indiana high school percussion programs: Center Grove, Avon, Franklin Central and Fishers. If you know anything about high school marching bands in Indiana, you know the first three are top competitors year in and year out in state contests. Fishers High School is just five years old, but already has a strong music program.
"The fantastic performances by Indiana's music students at the 2012 Super Bowl were a reflection of the fantastic music teachers and music education programs we have in our state," Gaking writes. "Not only do these students perform well in their schools and at contests, they have the professionalism to perform on the world's biggest stage. It was an honor for me to watch my colleagues and their students represent us with these honors tonight."
Bravo to the students and their instructors. They did Indiana schools proud.