Clarksville Band .jpg

The Clarksville Blue Tigers band plays before the Tigers football team’s game against the Linden-Kildare Tigers on Sept. 3

CLARKSVILLE — High school bands can look back to the past when creating their halftime shows, borrowing from classic bands of the 20th century, or even looking further back to artists from the classical, baroque and other eras long since passed. Not so with the Clarksville Tigers band, which is keeping things squarely in the present with this year’s show.

This year, the Tiger band will be performing a halftime piece titled “Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder,” which is inspired by and based on Lana Del Rey’s hit song “Young and Beautiful.”

Band director Roderick Boyce said he’s been extremely impressed with how quickly his group has been learning the several movements of the show, especially given how young they are on the whole.

“A lot of our band this year has never actually marched before, so we’re certainly a very young band,” he said with a chuckle. “One of the biggest challenges for these guys is keeping in step while playing. They can play the music, and they can keep in step pretty well, but when those things are combined they have a hard time keeping track of things.”

And while the freshmen are as inexperienced as freshmen always are, Boyce added the second-year band members are also far less experienced than usual. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, they battled several obstacles.

“Last year was hard,” he said. “Last year we got shut down for two weeks right before competition.”

So far this year, he said, Covid-19 hasn’t affected things yet, but Boyce said he knows that at a moment’s notice, the entire year can be thrown into chaos.

Despite their inexperience, Boyce reiterated that he’s been very pleased with how quickly the youthful band is learning, and expects them to be more than ready for UIL competition when it rolls around in October.

The band’s first competition will be Oct. 9 at Mount Pleasant, and after that, they have UIL regionals roughly a week later.

“We started working on it in July and we’ve already got two parts of it on the field,” Boyce said. “This group has desire and dedication. They’re eager to learn and they love to play. My job is to help them reach their potential and be the best that they can be.”

Tommy Culkin is sports editor for The Paris News. He can be reached at 903-785-6972 or at tommy.culkin@theparisnews.com.

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