Laura Grems is in her 3rd year as the Associate Band Director with the Bryan High School Bands. Ms.Grems serves as the primary director of the Symphonic Band and the Percussion Ensemble, while also assisting in the instruction of the Wind Symphony, Concert Band, and Marching Band. She also assists with the beginning percussion classes.
Ms. Grems is also the co-founder and executive director of the non-profit organization, Brazos Valley Independent Percussion. After a successful first year, the group will continue to compete in the 2020 indoor percussion season in the Texas Color Guard Circuit and the Winter Guard International Circuit.
Ms. Grems grew up in Vienna, Virginia and later moved to Ann Arbor where she graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education, where she earned a University Honors distinction. At Michigan, Ms. Grems was an avid performer within the percussion studio. During her time in Ann Arbor, she performed as a member of the Symphony Band, and is on several album recordings. She was also a member of the renowned University of Michigan Percussion Ensemble as well as an orchestra pit member of the Gilbert and Sullivan Society. From 2015-2017, she served as the Vice President for the University of Michigan’s collegiate board for the National Association for Music Education.
In her free time, Ms. Grems enjoys watching Michigan sports, traveling, baking, and spending time with her two cats.
Marie DeBellis is in her 13th year as color guard director and assistant band director at Bryan High School and her 17th year of teaching. Her main responsibilities include directing the color guard and winter guard programs, assist with the Viking marching band, symphonic and concert bands, and assist with the middle school band programs in the district. Before moving to Bryan, Texas, she directed the color guard program and was an assistant band director for Victoria Memorial High School in Victoria, Texas.
Ms. DeBellis studied music education at the University of Central Florida, and graduated Summa Cum Laude with her Bachelor of Music Education from Troy State University, in Troy, Alabama, in 2003. She participated in many of the performing ensembles at both universities on both clarinet and trumpet. During the summer of 2001, Ms. DeBellis was a hornline member of the Boston Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps.
Under Ms. DeBellis’ direction, the Bryan High School color guard program has earned the State Championships title for the Texas Color Guard Circuit in 2008, 2010, 2014, and 2015 in various classifications. They have been consistent finalist in the Winter Guard International Regionals in Houston, Austin, San Antonio and Dallas, and have been WGI World Championships finalists in both 2012 and 2015, and semi-finalists in 2019.
Ms. DeBellis has served on the Texas Color Guard Circuit Executive Board as treasurer for the past ten years, and in this role received the Randy Julia Service Award in 2014, and was inducted into the TCGC Hall of Fame in 2019. She has also served as the primary event organizer and host of the TCGC State Championships at Reed Arena for the past seven years. She was on staff with the Star of Texas Music Ambassadors in the summers of 2011 and 2013, by accompanying students from all over Texas on a concert tour of Europe. Ms. DeBellis is a member of the Texas Music Educators Association. She assists in teaching the Spirit Independent Winter Guard out of Houston, Texas.
When she has time off, she likes to travel to see her family in California, Rhode Island, and Florida.