By Reann Huber
The Morgan County High Marching Bulldogs are working hard this summer at their six-day long band camp to put together a show of “pure imagination” for the upcoming fall marching season.
“I had started with the idea of just pure imagination…because I wanted the kids to imagine themselves beyond high school and imagine themselves towards their future,” said MCHS Band Director Jeffrey Rowser. “One kid said, ‘Mr. Rowser, there’s a song called Pure Imagination from Willy Wonka,’ and then it took off from there.”
The students are more than excited to have this show put together that will feature music from the first and second Willy Wonka movies that will feature contemporary and rock style music from the second movie, along with the more traditional music of the times from the first movie.
Despite the heat and the long hours during their camp, MCHS band members are still putting in as much effort as possible to get their award winning show ready for their competitions in the fall.
“I like the discipline and effort the kids put into [the band] under very adverse circumstances, including the hot temperatures,” Rowser said. “We really push their endurance level. Even through their complaints, they still work hard.”
The Marching Bulldogs’ drum major, Rose Franks, is also excited for this upcoming season and working together with everyone as a drum major.
“[Being a drum major] is not just leading the band, it’s seeing how people are feeling about different things and checking in with everyone,” said Franks. “It’s not just about the music, it’s about the well being of the people too. I don’t necessarily consider myself in charge of anybody. We’re all a part of the band, we’re one big band.”
Both Rowser and Franks are looking forward to the growth of the band musically as well as working together as one, especially with the large number of freshmen members they have this year.
“What I’m looking forward to the most is probably seeing how the freshman fit in with everything and become a part of the big picture,” said Franks. “That’s what is most exciting, seeing how everything comes together.”
The Marching Bulldogs will be competing in two competitions this year, one being towards the end of September and the other at the end of October, and they hope to be just as successful this year as they’ve been in the past.
“I like to call ourselves an award winning band,” Rowser said. “Our kids have earned superior ratings every year and they’ve also won many placement awards. We always score in the top three of our categories.”Also, 126 of the band members will be traveling to Hawaii in November to take part in the Waikiki Holiday Parade as well as performing at the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Preparation for their performances in Hawaii will start once school is back in session.