Expect to hear popular music and see shows that push the limit this fall from local marching bands.
Marching band directors have chosen their shows, and nearly 1,000 local students will be marching and performing this fall.
The themes and music were selected by most marching band directors and assistants in the spring, and students have been working on mastering the music and the steps this summer.
During several weekends in October and November, the bands will perform and be judged on such factors as musicality, dramatic performance and visual effects. The culmination for some bands will be marching at the Indiana State School Music Association finals. You also can catch them at local high school football games.
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Here is a look at the marching band shows of local high schools.
Center Grove High School’s marching band wants to stand out this year, the director said. And they believe they will with their RGB-themed show, director Kevin Schuessler said.
The show concentrates on the RGB color scale, with visuals designed to make them stand out and to make moving on and off the field easier, he said.
Marchers will essentially be marching in a large box, with curtains and scaffolding being built and placed around the field, Schuessler said.
The idea is to give the audience an intimate feel when they watch the show, he said.
“It will be almost as if stage is set up,” he said.
Center Grove students have the talent and put in the time in marching band.
“The reality of it is we feel our individual marchers and players were achieving at a very high level. We didn’t stand out. We didn’t make a (show) where people are like ‘we need to see that again,’” he said.
Indian Creek High School
Indian Creek High School marching band students will explore the unknown.
The 72 students will march and play “Roswell 1947,” for their marching band show, director Amy Heavilin said.
The song is about the alleged crash of an alien ship in Roswell, New Mexico, in 1947. Props and costume design is underway.
The music is a concert band piece. Students suggested the piece to Heavilin, she said.
“I like to do marching pieces based on concert pieces for our kids; it lends itself well to what we are already doing,” Heavilin said.
Edinburgh Community High School
Marching band students at Edinburgh Community High School are staying close to home.
Traditionally, students don’t march in Indiana State School Music Association events, principal Kevin Rockey said.
Audience members can catch their performances at local parades and at halftime shows of Friday night football games, he said.
Franklin Community High School
Marchers at Franklin Community High School will be going on an adventure.
Their show is based off Aztec and Mayan cultures with the piece of music called “Relic,” director Tim Kosch said.
The 94 students will tell the story of an adventurer who seeks to capture a gem, he said.
Ancient ruins and temples will be a part of the set. The story line is a bit detailed, since a strong story line can help the students as musicians get into and understand the music they are playing, he said.
“The kids like to have a story line, a directory of what we are trying to say,” he said.
The music was picked because it fit with the strength and weaknesses of the students, Kosch said.
Greenwood Community High School
The Greenwood Community High School marching band will tell a story about what the world is like when different people have power.
About 175 marchers will march in their “When Worlds Collide,” a show that will tell a story in three phases, director John Morse said.
Three planets will be on the field, with each planet representing a phase of the show. The first phase is when everything is right in the world. The second phase represents when the every man doesn’t have power. The third phase will detail when power is put back in people’s hands.
The idea from the show came from melding classical and pop pieces together, Morse said.
Band members will play and march to “Symphony No. 9,” by Antonin Dvorak, “What A Wonderful World,” “It’s the End of the World As We Know It,” “Mad World” and “Everybody Wants to Rule the World.”
“It was a great opportunity for us to combine some great classical music with some great pop music that has similar themes,” he said.
Roncalli High School
Roncalli High School is going to the movies.
The band’s audiences will get treated to famous songs from movies in their “The Sound of Movies,” planned shows.
The pieces include “The Sound of Music,” “So you wanted to meet the Wizard,” and two songs from “Moana,” including “How Far I’ll Go.”
Marching band is a strictly extracurricular activity at Roncalli, so director Kathy Peach concentrates on choosing music that will entertain audiences, she said.
“We do entertaining shows,” she said. “Our football fans love it.”
And the show will have more dancing this year, with marchers tackling salsa and African dancing as part of their show, she said.
Whiteland Community High School
Growth spurts the past few years have made the Marching Warriors of Whiteland Community High School the largest band in the county.
Nearly 200 students have joined the marching band this year and the band has seen consistent growth during the last few years, band director Pete Sampson said.
“We are excited to keep growing this year,” he said.
Whiteland will march in the Indiana State School Music Association Class A, open class, with its “Encompass” show.
Center Grove High School is the only other local high school to be in Class A, with classes based on school enrollment, Sampson said.
A strong middle-school program has allowed students to get a taste of the high school music program in middle school and has compelled them to keep up music classes and training at high school, Sampson said.
And the band participates in other events, such as marching in the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day parade, Sampson said.