They’ve got the beat


Smith-Cotton kicks off 10-day Band Camp

Hope Lecchi - [email protected]



Louis Vasquez, a senior, stands in position early Thursday morning at Smith-Cotton’s Band Camp. The members practice from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for 10 days to prepare for the upcoming season. The band has a preview performance slated for 7:30 p.m. Aug. 10. The event is free and open to the public and will highlight the marching band’s program “Fathoms.”


Alex Esquivel discusses the proper field alignment for his section with Stephen Broadbent, assistant director of instrumental music for S-C. This year’s marching band has 74 members and is preparing for the upcoming football season as well as an appearance at the the TaxSlayer Bowl (formerly the Gator Bowl) in Florida on Jan. 2.


Sarah Meyrs takes a cold drink of water during a break from learning the step patterns at band camp. “If you don’t have water with you,” Grant Maledy, Smith-Cotton Director of instrumental music, said to the band members in attendance, “…then you are doing band wrong.” With temperatures in the mid-80s, the students were given several water breaks throughout the four-hour morning session Thursday. The members were set to return at 1 p.m for an additional three hours of practice.


Austin Arnold, junior, who plays the alto saxophone, partners with freshman Jasmine Williams, a drummer, to practice their marching technique. The band will perform at halftime of five home football games as well as four marching band competitions. The band will host a marching band festival Sept. 26.


Freshman Joseph Snelling stands ready to practice his first formations as part of the high school band. Snelling is a trombone player for the band. His older sister, Avery Snelling, is one of three drum majors for the marching Tigers. “I’m really excited about this group,” Avery Snelling said. “They all seem really eager and are engaged in what we are showing them,” she added.


Smith-Cotton kicks off 10-day Band Camp

Hope Lecchi

[email protected]

Louis Vasquez, a senior, stands in position early Thursday morning at Smith-Cotton’s Band Camp. The members practice from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for 10 days to prepare for the upcoming season. The band has a preview performance slated for 7:30 p.m. Aug. 10. The event is free and open to the public and will highlight the marching band’s program “Fathoms.”
http://sedaliademocrat.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/web1_tsd073115bandcamp11.jpgLouis Vasquez, a senior, stands in position early Thursday morning at Smith-Cotton’s Band Camp. The members practice from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for 10 days to prepare for the upcoming season. The band has a preview performance slated for 7:30 p.m. Aug. 10. The event is free and open to the public and will highlight the marching band’s program “Fathoms.”

Alex Esquivel discusses the proper field alignment for his section with Stephen Broadbent, assistant director of instrumental music for S-C. This year’s marching band has 74 members and is preparing for the upcoming football season as well as an appearance at the the TaxSlayer Bowl (formerly the Gator Bowl) in Florida on Jan. 2.
http://sedaliademocrat.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/web1_tsd073115bandcamp21.jpgAlex Esquivel discusses the proper field alignment for his section with Stephen Broadbent, assistant director of instrumental music for S-C. This year’s marching band has 74 members and is preparing for the upcoming football season as well as an appearance at the the TaxSlayer Bowl (formerly the Gator Bowl) in Florida on Jan. 2.

Sarah Meyrs takes a cold drink of water during a break from learning the step patterns at band camp. “If you don’t have water with you,” Grant Maledy, Smith-Cotton Director of instrumental music, said to the band members in attendance, “…then you are doing band wrong.” With temperatures in the mid-80s, the students were given several water breaks throughout the four-hour morning session Thursday. The members were set to return at 1 p.m for an additional three hours of practice.
http://sedaliademocrat.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/web1_tsd073115bandcamp31.jpgSarah Meyrs takes a cold drink of water during a break from learning the step patterns at band camp. “If you don’t have water with you,” Grant Maledy, Smith-Cotton Director of instrumental music, said to the band members in attendance, “…then you are doing band wrong.” With temperatures in the mid-80s, the students were given several water breaks throughout the four-hour morning session Thursday. The members were set to return at 1 p.m for an additional three hours of practice.

Austin Arnold, junior, who plays the alto saxophone, partners with freshman Jasmine Williams, a drummer, to practice their marching technique. The band will perform at halftime of five home football games as well as four marching band competitions. The band will host a marching band festival Sept. 26.
http://sedaliademocrat.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/web1_tsd073115bandcamp41.jpgAustin Arnold, junior, who plays the alto saxophone, partners with freshman Jasmine Williams, a drummer, to practice their marching technique. The band will perform at halftime of five home football games as well as four marching band competitions. The band will host a marching band festival Sept. 26.

Freshman Joseph Snelling stands ready to practice his first formations as part of the high school band. Snelling is a trombone player for the band. His older sister, Avery Snelling, is one of three drum majors for the marching Tigers. “I’m really excited about this group,” Avery Snelling said. “They all seem really eager and are engaged in what we are showing them,” she added.
http://sedaliademocrat.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/web1_tsd073115bandcamp51.jpgFreshman Joseph Snelling stands ready to practice his first formations as part of the high school band. Snelling is a trombone player for the band. His older sister, Avery Snelling, is one of three drum majors for the marching Tigers. “I’m really excited about this group,” Avery Snelling said. “They all seem really eager and are engaged in what we are showing them,” she added.

After only four hours of practice, Smith-Cotton Instrumental Music Director Grant Maledy can already tell the members of the high school band are marching in the right direction.

The 74 members began a 10-day long camp Thursday to prepare them for the upcoming season.

“I am well pleased with how we are doing,” Maledy said. “They have already picked up most of the movements for the first drill after just a few hours.”

The band has several events to prepare for in the upcoming months, the highlight being a performance at the TaxSlayer Bowl (formerly the Gator Bowl) on Jan. 2.

“We really do a have a long season,” Maledy said. “Our first performance will be Aug. 7 with our preview show. Then we keep going with at least five home football games, and a number of competitions and parades.”

Area residents can see the marching Tigers perform in a matter of weeks: the band will appear at the Missouri State Fair Parade on Aug. 13.

They will also make an appearance at the Christmas Parade in Downtown Sedalia on Dec. 5.

The theme for the band’s show is Fathoms, which Maledy describes as a nautical show that features several new selections for the group.

To help the members learn not only the required steps and marching formations, but the music as well, the band is hosting two-a-day practices, from 8 a.m. to noon and then from 1 to 4 p.m.

“Our numbers are up 50 percent from last year,” Maledy said. “We added a lot of members from junior high and retained a lot of upperclassmen too.

“These kids work really hard and I am extremely proud of them,” he added.

Not only do the students work hard on the field, the second Tuesday of each month is a Papa Murphy Pizza Fundraiser night for the group. A portion of all sales those nights is donated back to the band to help pay for their trip to Jacksonville, Florida, and their bowl appearance.

“I can’t say enough about the support the district and TIMPO (Tiger Instrumental Musical Promoters Organizers) provides the band and the instrumental musical program as a whole,” Maledy said. “We couldn’t do this without their support and the support of the parents and community.”

To show their appreciation, the Marching Tigers will present a preview performance at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 7 at Heckart Field at Smith-Cotton Stadium at the Jennie Jaynes Activity Complex. The performance is free and open to the public.

Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484

Sedalia Democrat

Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484

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