Tyler Lee band student chosen from thousands to march in Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade

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Updated: Nov. 13, 2019 at 12:40 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - When the 2019 Macy’s Great American Marching Band parades through the streets of New York City on Thanksgiving Day, a Tyler teen will be among 200 students chosen to take part in the honor.

Elizabeth Boynton, a senior at Robert E. Lee High School, was chosen to represent the state of Texas in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

“I was watching the Macy’s Day Parade, the one from 2018, and I saw they had this marching band of high school students,” Boynton recalled. “I thought it would be cool to do that. So, I looked it up online and found that you could just audition for it.”

Boynton’s audition tape included a solo performance on her clarinet, which she’s played since 6th grade, and a video of her marching. About a month later, she said she learned she was accepted.

“I’m super excited,” Boynton said. She added, “I didn’t really tell that many people I was going to audition.”

Only a handful of students were chosen from more than 14,000 high schools across the U.S. Organizers chose finalists based on their musical ability and past achievements.

“She’s a wonderful student and musician. She’s always on top of things, she’s in a wind ensemble, and she’s also a drum major," said Sam Labordus, band director at Tyler Lee.

Stepping-off from Central Park, the Great American Marching Band will be cheered by an estimated 3.5 million live spectators before arriving at Macy’s flagship store for their national performance to more than 50 million TV viewers watching at home.

In addition to marching in the parade, Boynton also received a guest leadership seminar, meals, lodging, and New York City sightseeing, including a Madison Square Garden Tour, Thanksgiving dinner and dance, and a Broadway show.

“[The band] has been very supportive; they’ve been incredibly proud and happy for her. It’s something that she did all on her own. We just can’t wait to see her on television," said Labordus.

“I’m really excited to see the [Macy’s parade balloons] in person,” Boynton laughed. “I hope it snows.”

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