Lion Steel has been part of Leon High School’s outstanding performing arts program for over 25 years. During this time, it has become one of the leading high school steel band programs in the nation. The program has grown to include a combined enrollment of over 175 students. The program is one of only a small handful of high schools in the country that provide the opportunity for a 4-year steelband experience and is one of only a couple in Florida. Membership in the band is open to all students at the high school and has a “no experience necessary” attitude for our beginning bands. Auditions determine membership for intermediate and advanced bands.
Our mission is to provide students with a rigorous music education that focuses on performance and music literacy. Lion Steel places an emphasis on playing traditional steel band music as well as new and expanding repertory. Additionally, Lion Steel provides students with a unique experience as they discover foreign musical cultures. It is our firm belief that the steelband has serious merit not only an enjoyable ensemble for the performer and audience, but as a real tool for music education and musical literacy.
Lion Steel regularly performs around the state, as well as traveling to out-of-state contests and events including FMEA conventions as well as FMEA sanctioned performance adjudications. In 2012, 2014, and 2016, the band took first-place among high schools at the Virginia Beach Panorama Caribbean Music Festival as well as overall Grand Champion in ’14 and ’16.
Directed by Mike Wendeln, Lion Steel consists of ten (10!) performing ensembles: Four beginning bands, where students first learn how to read music and play the steel pan, the intermediate Jouvert and Bacchanal Bands and our advanced, Canboulay Band. We also feature a “gig” band, Pan Groove, as well as three adult community bands.
As steelbands begin to appear in schools across the country, Lion Steel aspires to be a leading force in the art form, exemplifying excellence in performance and high-level music education.
For any questions, please E-mail the director @ email@example.com