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Richmond band students and new Director of Bands Jeff Clymore will be getting to know one another better as they enter summer band camps next month.
Clymore met with the Richmond band students on May 6 and “is really excited” about his new position. He looks forward to competing in parade and field competitions during marching season. He also plans to work the Colorguard and Drumline into competition-ready routines, though that may not take place this year.
Clymore said he has some good people in place to help get the show and the band ready.
“I have my section leaders and Alea Brunworth is our drum major,” said Clymore. “I also have the parents.
“The first thing, after summer band, will be the MU Band Day on Sept. 19. We’ll do a halftime performance. There’ll be about 20 bands participating,” he said.
The RHS Marching Spartan Band will be performing a “Blues Brothers” field competition theme throughout the year. Clymore said tunes will include “I Can’t Turn You Loose,” “Soul Man,” “Rawhide,” and Aretha Franklin’s “Think.” The show will last from eight to 10 minutes and will include marching patterns showing various flow and movement.
“The shapes will explode outward and morph inward,” said Clymore. “We bought the musical arrangements, and I’ll be doing the charts for the marching.”
The band will spend rehearsals honing its marching skills and sound. Each performance will reveal their attention to perfecting the details. The public will get to see the debut of the new show at 7 p.m., Aug. 6 at the Spartan football practice field for the Meet the Band day.
Clymore said the band would travel to Carrollton for its yearly Band Day, where the band has competed in parade several times. This year they will also compete in the field competition. The band’s final marching competition will be at Trenton Band Day, competing in parade and field.
Clymore comes to Richmond after teaching for three years at Lathrop. He is a graduate of Oak Grove High School where he played saxophone and was a valedictorian. He said he graduated in 2006 from the University of Missouri-Columbia.
“I was an engineering major for the first semester,” said Clymore. “When I saw that my music classes outdid my engineering classes, I changed my major after the semester.”
He enjoyed his MU music experience.
“The MU band has 260 members. When you’re running out on the field (for the halftime performance), there are 30,000 eyes looking at you,” he sais with a smile.
Clymore met with The Daily News in the RHS band room where volunteers were doing a deep cleaning and an inventory of music, instruments and other items the band has in its possession. Clymore estimated about 30 people had spent two days, approximately 16 hours, in this endeavor and he was grateful for their help.
The band is still trying to raise money for new uniforms. The current uniforms were purchased around 1985 and cost $26,000. New uniforms are estimated to cost $40,000.
If Clymore could have a wish list for the band, he would ask for a new marching bass drum, a sousaphone and a xylophone.
Five students will be attending summer band camps at various universities in the coming weeks.
Donations to the band are always appreciated and go toward funds for new uniforms, instruments and other expenses.
(Watch for the article regarding the summer band program for middle and high school students in an upcoming edition of The Daily News this week.)