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North Hardin band sees youth as opportunity

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By Kelly Cantrall

After earning second place in last year’s KMEA state competition, the North Hardin High School marching band is returning with a “Fury” this year.

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The band is larger in numbers but younger in age this year compared to last. However, it isn’t allowing age to stop it from setting lofty goals at the national level for this season.

This year’s show is titled “Fury” and is based on Greek mythology and its goddesses of the Underworld, called the Furies. The concept was created first and then the music was added, which is how the band has created shows the last two years, Director Brian Froedge said.

Senior Alex Russett, a trumpet player, said he liked the inclusion of mythology into the show’s theme.

“I was happy to hear about the sophistication involved,” Russett said.

Junior Juan Lee-Thacker, a drum major, said she specifically loves the ballad in the show.

“It’s really exciting to conduct the music,” she said.

The past couple years the band at North Hardin has included many seniors, but this year there are a lot of freshmen and sophomore members. Froedge said the age of the members doesn’t change his approach to the band.

“We try to get better every year regardless of the age of the kids,” he said.

Russett said the band hopes to reach the finals of the Bands of America Grand National Championships this year.

Being one of the oldest members of the band “puts a lot of pressure on your shoulders, a lot of weight,” he said, but senior Mason Case said the young members are very gifted musically.

“It’s just a lot of raw talent,” Case said.

This year’s band is almost at 200 members, Froedge said, a large increase from the approximately 165 members it had last year. Case said growing numbers show the importance of the arts at the school, and Lee-Thacker attributes it to the band’s past success.

That means more students to teach, but also more sources of talent, Froedge said.

“The more kids you have, the more opportunities you have to be successful competitively,” he said.

Kelly Cantrall can be reached at 270-505-1747 or kcantrall@thenewsenterprise.com.

North Hardin High School Marching Band competition schedule

  • Sept. 14 - competition at Glasgow
  • Sept. 21 - Bands of America Kettering regional
  • Oct. 5 - In-state contest
  • Oct. 19 - State quarterfinals
  • Oct. 26 - State championships
  • Nov. 9 - Bands of America Indianapolis regional
  • Nov. 14-16 - Bands of America Grand National Championships