Austin ISD band director and trumpet player Ryan Dufrene will march in the Band Directors’ Marching Band at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Nov. 23.

Dufrene teaches at four elementary schools in AISD: Houston Elementary, Langford Elementary, Perez Elementary and Widén Elementary. It's here where Dufrene said he shares his love of music and the opportunities that come with it.

“There really was nothing else that I wanted to do,” Dufrene said of his career choice. “Music is just such a special thing and an important part of my life. I think it's extremely important and special for me to be able to share that with young people and hopefully spark interest in them to, at the very least, appreciate music in a different way.”

The details

The Band Directors Marching Band is made up of over 400 directors from across the country. The band itself is part of The Saluting Band Directors project by the Michael D. Sewell Memorial Foundation, a nonprofit organization founded in 2017 to support the arts.

This will be the marching band’s second appearance ever, where they will perform three different pieces, including a medley of Broadway themes. Aside from the parade, the band will also perform at a wreath laying ceremony at the 9/11 Memorial.

Dufrene has marched before in the Macy’s parade, 18 years ago as a student at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

“That was an opportunity that I had because of being in a band, and that's available to [my students too],” Dufrene said. “Whether they major in music or not, they can still play music in college. Whether they want to make a career out of music or not, they can still participate in it and have these really cool experiences.”

Stay tuned

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will begin at 7:30 a.m. Nov. 23 and will be broadcast on NBC. The parade can also be streamed on Peacock or on a live television streaming service.

For more information on Saluting America’s Band Directors, visit For more information on the parade, visit For more information on AISD, visit