Pandemonium steel drum corps

The Shoemaker High School Pandemonium steel drum corps performs on the steps of the Capitol building in Austin during a state fine arts day in March 2011. The group is calling on the public to go online and vote for its video to help the school ensemble win $15,000 for its program.

The Pandemonium steel drum corps at Shoemaker High School is looking for some online support to win $15,000.

The popular percussion ensemble could win the money for its program if enough people respond favorably to a video of the group by Friday.

The contest, called the Gift of Music, is based on online voting for favorite posted videos.

The top four vote getters win a $15,000 prize for their schools.

Voting began Dec. 28 and concludes Friday. Voters may cast online ballots once a day.

Julie McBride, director of Pandemonium, said the contest has drawn band and choir groups from across the country, but that the Shoemaker group is the only one from this area, according to the gallery of participants.

McBride formed the group soon after Shoemaker High School opened as a four-year high school in 2000.

The familiar calypso sound of the percussion ensemble is a popular one around town and beyond. The group won a Winter Guard color guard championship in 2001. Two years ago, Pandemonium was one of 25 bands, choirs, theater and dance groups invited to perform outside the Capitol building on Arts Education Day in Austin.

In recent years, however, McBride has said she is most interested in taking her students to community events, sharing the group’s distinctive sound and promoting fine arts around Killeen. Pandemonium currently has performances lined up through May.

Though many enjoy Pandemonium, McBride said the group is made up of just 15 students and must share a limited budget with the larger marching band.

“We have to raise a lot of our own money,” she said. “This would be a great way to get the drums we need.”

To view the Shoemaker drum corps’ video and to cast a vote, go to

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