The new season of the Monett Marching Pride Band and Flag Corps was described to the Monett Kiwanis Club at a recent meeting. New director Philip Soule and his drum majors, Bridget Barta and Kenny Mobley, made the presentation.
Soule described how the band is working on its program, "Pandora's Box." The piece is musically challenging, describing figures in Greek mythology. The first movement introduces Zeus, the king of the gods.
Barta, the senior drum major, said band students begin their day at 7:10 a.m. if their section leaders call a pre-school practice session. The entire bands meets for sectional rehearsal on Thursdays.
"I want the kids to have fun and work hard," Soule said.
The band will enter four competitions this year. Monett's season will start on Sept. 29 at the Webbstock contest in Webb City. The band travels to Springfield on Oct. 6 for a contest at Parkview High School and Oct. 13 at Reeds Spring. The season will conclude at Oct. 20 in Warrensburg.
Two events are tailored for the size of the ensembles. The others have divisions for different sized bands. The top three in each division will advance to the final round.
A total of 46 students are participating in band this year. There are 10 seniors, Soule said, and over half the band is freshmen or new members.
Soule was raised in Kansas City. His experience as a musician began as a flute player because his family owned a flute.
Soule and his wife, who teaches choir in Neosho, live in Neosho. They have two children. Soule taught winter drum line part-time for the Joplin School District and was signed on full-time to instruct the junior high band. He subsequently taught high school band in Warrensburg and Concordia.
Monett's band program starts in the sixth grade. At present, 68 students are in the introductor band. The middle school band has 42 seventh graders and 25 eighth graders. Soule hopes at least 20 of those will continue in high school.
Band activities will include a tailgate fundraiser on homecoming on Sept. 14. A Cub Card fundraiser will start at the end of September.
The speakers were introduced by Brad Hanson. Kiwanis president Eric Kean presided.
The club will hold a Peanut Day fundraiser on Sept. 14 and sponsor a night golf tournament on Oct. 5.
The Monett Kiwanis Club meets at noon on Tuesdays for a meal and a program, usually at Happy House restaurant.