By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
Members of the London City Schools marching band closed their 2013 competition season on a high note.
On Nov. 10, the 61-member band earned a 1/superior at the Ohio Music Education Association’s state marching band finals in Dayton. This marked the fifth straight year the band qualified for state and the 22nd time in 30 years.
This year’s trip and the superior rating were hard won. In the first three contests of the season, the band earned 2’s. A band must earn a 1 during the regular season to move on to state.
Based on judges’ comments, the musicians, color guard and their instructors worked to make their show more cohesive.
“The judges said we needed to function more as one unit, where everybody is contributing to the overall effect of the show,” said Amanda Tobias, who served as interim director while director Angela Fugate was on maternity leave this fall.
The band tweaked its showmanship, students grew into leadership roles, and the result was 1/superior ratings at the last two regular season contests and, ultimately, the state contest.
The show theme was music from The Beatles. The opening number was a medley of “Magical Mystery Tour” and “Lady Madonna,” followed by “Eleanor Rigby.”
The third number, a medley of “Blackbird” and “Yesterday,” featured solos by senior trumpet player T.J. Ruesch and senior color guard member Tori Newsome. The show closed with a combination of “Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” and “The End.”
The London marching band is comprised of seventh- through 12th-graders. Gina Newsome is the guard instructor.
For the second consecutive year, the Madison-Plains marching band earned a superior, the highest rating possible, at the Ohio Music Education Association (OMEA) State Marching Band Finals.
The 70-member band competed Nov. 2 at Hilliard Bradley High School.
“The judges commented that our show was creative and that the students performed difficult material very well,” said Derek Scoles, who co-directs the band with Taylor Coleman. Nicholas Dillion is the percussion instructor, and Nicole Gregio is the color guard instructor.
The theme of Madison-Plains’ show was “Joy in All Things.” The first number, “Celebration and Song,” featured solos by senior mellophone player Samantha Allen and freshman color guard member Alexis Zaweski.
The second number, “Festive Overture,” spotlighted Allen again on mellophone, senior Destiny Bennett on trumpet, and eighth-grade color guard member Skylar Stewart.
Next up was “On a Hymnsong of Philip Bliss,” featuring sophomore Hailey Kitchen on mellophone. Rounding out the show, the saxophone and percussion sections were featured in “Ode to Joy.”