SHS Matador Band nails Carnegie Hall performance, weather delays trip back home
Posted on 3/14/2017 2:26:00 PM.
(Seguin) -- A performance at one of the most prestigious concert venues in North America followed by a few extra days in New York City due to a large snowstorm are no doubt memories in the making for the members of the Seguin High School Matador Band.

With large amounts of snow on the ground, the band's trip back home to Seguin has now been delayed until at least Thursday if not Friday. The band was originally scheduled to return home on Tuesday night. However on Monday, the band was forced to implement its Plan B which included staying a few extra days after flights were being cancelled and airports were shutting down.
On Tuesday, the band relocated to yet another hotel -- this one in Rutherford, NJ at the Renaissance Hotel. Band Director Stan Mauldin says the band had already relocated to another hotel in Newark but because airports are still closed and flights are being worked out, they needed a place to further accommodate them.
He says the band is comfortable, safe and warm. He says there's no reason for parents or community members to worry as they are equipped with plenty to eat and have the means to cover the additional and unexpected expenses. In fact, the weather is definitely a new experience for many of the South Texas teens. Mauldin says the students spent the afternoon Tuesday taking snow pictures and just enjoying the extra time together.
While there's plenty of excitement over the large snowstorm on the East Coast, there is perhaps a more permanent memory with the band's successful performance at Carnegie Hall on Monday night. Mauldin says the "kids were amazing!" In fact, he says the band received not one but two standing ovations. He says the Matador Band was the only one to receive one that night.
Junior Samuel Johnson-Vrooman says he is proud of the true team effort that was present on the stage.
"I thought we played very well, great even. It was a little bit stressful going into Carnegie because it's Carnegie Hall and it's pretty much the most famous venue in north America, but yeah, I think as a whole, we all felt really good about how we played and how we did," said Johnson-Vrooman.
And like the rest of the band members, Johnson-Vrooman says the standing ovations were no doubt a bonus.
"That was pretty cool. A lot of really big concert bands played in front of us. I mean some of them, one string band toured in like Italy and France and all these places across the Atlantic. I mean we've never really done anything outside of Texas and here we go and play really well and get two standing ovations and there are people who have toured outside of the U.S. playing there as well so that was pretty cool to realize," said Johnson-Vrooman.
Senior Kiersten Gustafson says she too was not only excited about the band's performance but by the audience's reaction.
"I think everybody was a little bit nervous because it's such a big deal -- just because how big of a trip it is, but our performance went really well. They did seem excited," said Gustafason.
Despite the delay in coming home, Johnson-Vrooman says he doesn't want families or the Seguin community to worry. He says they are not stranded at a hotel nor lack any comforts of enjoying a well deserved Spring Break.
"There is a lot of snow though, a lot of snow. I mean really these states up in the North East, they handle snow way better than Texas does. I mean the roads aren't even iced, like all of them are pretty much perfectly clear. So driving conditions aren't bad. They just know what they're doing up here," said Johnson-Vrooman.
Mauldin says he again appreciates the support and patience of the families that await their student's return and says "the kids are well disciplined" making the experience that much more enjoyable. He says the community is fortunate to have such a wonderful group represent its hometown.

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