The Southwest Dekalb High School Wind Symphony is the top group of our four concert bands. The Wind Symphony is a vehicle for exposing our strongest musicians to the most challenging and significant works of the wind band repertoire. This group performed at the 1996 and 1976 GMEA Annual Inservice Conference. In spring 2009, the Southwest Dekalb HS Wind Symphony performed at the Music For All/ Bands of America National Concert Band Festival in Indianapolis, Indiana. This annual event features the country’s finest concert ensembles which are selected by tape audition. Also in 2009, the Wind Symphony performed at the HBCU Band Directors Consortium in Atlanta, GA. In 2011 the Wind Symphony performed at the University of Georgia January High School Band Festival (JanFest) in Athens, GA. In 2012 the Wind Symphony performed at the Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference in Savannah, GA and at the Kennesaw State University Concert Band Invitational Festival.
Ranking high among the many proud traditions of Southwest Dekalb High School is the highly acclaimed Marching Panther Band. The marching band is recognized for its perfection in musicianship, precision in marching, and innovative, high-energy performances. The key to the success of "The Best Band in the Land" is its commitment to artistic excellence, discipline and hard work. The SWD Band has performed at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York, the Carnival of Flowers in Nice, France, performed for two United States President, and for the Opening Ceremony of the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games. In the Fall of 2002, the SWD Band was featured as an exhibition band at the Bands of America Grand National Championship in Indianapolis, Indiana. Along with many local parades and events, the SWD Bands has also performed for numerous Atlanta Falcons Halftime Shows, as well for the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies Basketball Team. Recently the SWD Band was prominently featured in the 20th Century Fox movie "Drumline". The movie featured the band students as members of the fictional hero college band (Atlanta A&T University) in both music and field drill situations. The Southwest Dekalb Marching Panther Band traveled to California to participate in the 2006 and 2011Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California. Music and band is a vital part of the total school and community culture.
SWD Band Mission Statement
Working hard is most essential. Through that, it is our mission to increase confidence, self discipline, organization and individual performance as we hold ourselves accountable to rise above the expected while cultivating a positive environment that fosters a life-long love of Music. As merit of our hard work in rehearsals, performances and in the classroom, we will seek and participate in the best and most educationally enriching band events the nation has to offer.
SWD Band Achievements
2012 - SWD Wind Symphony performed at the Kennesaw State University Concert Band Invitational Festival
2012 - SWD Wind Symphony performed at the Georgia Music Educators Association In service conference in Savannah, GA
2011 - SWD Band and Nick Cannon films opening segment for hit t.v. show "America's Got Talent"
2011 - SWD Wind Symphony performed at the University of Georgia January High School Band Festival (JanFest)
2011- Perform in the 2011 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasedena, California
2010- SWD Drumline featured on the nationally syndicated Steve Harvey Morning Talk Show
2010 - Recorded third marching band cd (to be released August 2010)
2009 - Recorded track for Mariah Carey's new CD released in fall 2009
2009 - Selected to perform in the 2011 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California
2009- SWD "Marching Panther" Band wins all top prizes at the Tyson's Corporation Battle of the Bands in Memphis, Tennessee
2009- SWD Wind Symphony performed at the HBCU Band Directors Consortium in Atlanta, GA
2009- SWD Wind Symphony performed at Music For All/ Bands Of America National Concert Band Festival in Indianapolis, IN
2008- Featured in Our Own reality television series titled: "DRUMROLL:SWD"
2006- Perform in the 2006 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasedena, California
2002- Featured in 20th Century Fox's "Drumline"
2002- The First high school band in history featured in exhibition performance at the Bands of America National Championship(Indianapolis, Indiana)
2002- Invited to perform in Johannesburg, South Africa
2001- Performed for President George W. Bush
2000 - Recorded and released second marching band cd
1997- First African-American High School Band to ever perform in the Macy's Parade (New York City)
1997- Performed in Nice, France Carnival of Flowers National Celebration
1996 - Recorded & released first marching band cd
1996- The ONLY band in America to perform in the Opening Ceremonies of the Centennial Olympic Games
1996 & 1976- SWD Symphonic Band performed at the Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference in Savannah, GA