SC State’s Marching 101 gets back into the rhythm of things

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SC State’s Marching 101 gets back into the rhythm of things

Pictured Marching 101 band members practice during field rehearsals

ORANGEBURG, S.C. – After being away from campus for an extended period due to the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns, South Carolina State University’s Marching 101 Band is finally getting back to the rhythm of things.

“It feels great. I’m back like I never left. I get to recreate memories with new and old band members. It just feels amazing,” said Brandon Rogers, leader of the band’s euphonium section. “Us not being around each other had a small effect on our relationships and the way we communicate, so it’s good that we’re back now. I see my band members like my family. Even outside of here we look after each other.”

For some band members, not being able to see each other in person or having their daily drills was a like a culture shock. Now that the band is back together and students are getting acclimated, they are ready to get back to doing what they are passionate about.

“It’s been a challenge, but exciting at the same time— making sure our students are COVID free, getting them back acclimated on campus and to the band life,” said Dr. Patrick Moore, university director of bands. “The most exciting part about coming back to the band is getting back to normal and getting to see and interact with the students again.”

Even though the band members have not had practice in more than a year, Dr. Moore is committed to keeping the normalcy of their regular routine. Band members operate on a daily 18-hour schedule that starts at 5 a.m. and ends at 11 p.m. During that time, they have workouts, field practices and music rehearsals.

“Personally, it’s also been a challenge for me too — going from not being able to work and now having to jump back into it, getting mentally prepared and being physically prepared. To be up that amount of time and only getting three to four hours of sleep each night can be hard, but we take it one day at a time,” Moore said.

He said even though students have busy schedules, they will still have time to complete their course work. All band members are required to attend study sessions and as a result, develop better time-management skills.

They are now integrating new ideas and are doing what they can to stay up to date. They will be getting new uniforms for the 2021 fall semester and incorporating new music into their repertory.

“We’ve started taking suggestions from the students, things that they’ve heard that they like and want to play and incorporating that into the normal tunes that we play on a daily basis,” Moore said.Even though the band members have not had practice in more than a year, Dr. Moore is committed to keeping the normalcy of their regular routine. Band members operate on a daily 18-hour schedule that starts at 5 a.m. and ends at 11 p.m. During that time, they have workouts, field practices and music rehearsals.

“Personally, it’s also been a challenge for me too — going from not being able to work and now having to jump back into it, getting mentally prepared and being physically prepared. To be up that amount of time and only getting three to four hours of sleep each night can be hard, but we take it one day at a time,” Moore said.

He said even though students have busy schedules, they will still have time to complete their course work. All band members are required to attend study sessions and as a result, develop better time-management skills.

They are now integrating new ideas and are doing what they can to stay up to date. They will be getting new uniforms for the 2021 fall semester and incorporating new music into their repertory.

“We’ve started taking suggestions from the students, things that they’ve heard that they like and want to play and incorporating that into the normal tunes that we play on a daily basis,” Moore said.

Moore said that with Marching 101 members having been away a while, they are trying to bring that excitement back to their fans. It was important for him to integrate some new music with the older music to accommodate everyone and make it more exciting for the new band members coming in.

“I would tell students who are thinking about joining the band to definitely do it. It’s fun and a great way to make friends. It’s a great way to develop a brand-new support group, not only for class, but also for your mental health as well. It is a great way for you to travel too,” Moore said.

This upcoming season, the Marching 101 is plans to perform at universities in Florida and North Carolina, and it will be participating in high school recruitment events. Also, at the end of this month, the band will host its 101 Showcase event, where members will display their new uniforms.

“It feels great coming back to the band,” said Jameson Blue, leader for the band’s mellophone section. “It has molded me into a person where I know that no matter what the obstacle is, no matter how big or small the issue is, I can overcome it, at any time of day or point.”

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