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Drumlines, guards to perform at MadTown Indoor Throwdown on Saturday

Published 4:19pm Monday, February 18, 2013

MADISON — Drumlines and color guards from three states will compete at the MadTown Indoor Throwdown on Saturday.

In 2012, Bob Jones High School Indoor Drumline inaugurated the throwdown, aligned with the Southeastern Color Guard Circuit (SCGC).

Fifty-three drumlines and color guards from Alabama, Tennessee and Mississippi will compete. Doors open at 10 a.m. Drumlines will perform from 11 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. Winter guards then will compete from 2:45 to 8:45 p.m., followed by the awards ceremony.

The afternoon is blocked for “winter guards,” akin to color guards in marching band but performing to recorded music and illustrating a story while dancing and twirling flags, rifles, swords and other items.

Tennessee Valley units participating are Bob Jones, Athens, Buckhorn, Decatur, Lawrence County, Muscle Shoals and Sparkman high schools, along with Discovery Middle School and Vivace of Huntsville.

Bob Jones’ program, “From the Ashes,” details the story of the Phoenix, “living out its last day, bursting into flames and then reborn from its ashes,” director Leigh Thomas said.

The program symbolizes the drumline’s changes this year: a new director and students and opening of James Clemens High School. “All these things represent a metamorphosis for this longstanding program,” Thomas said. “The Phoenix’ story illustrates this journey perfectly and provides a deep, personal relevance for our students, staff, parents and director.”

Parent volunteer Kathryn Barr believes the throwdown “will be a day packed with fun. If you’ve never heard indoor drumlines, this is an excellent opportunity to see some great ensembles in action.”

The audience can expect many percussion instruments — “anything you can hit to make a sound including marimbas and vibraphones, like a xylophone, to snare and bass drums,” Barr said. The front ensemble, or pit, primarily plays melody, while the battery has drummers in movements combining marching and dancing to illustrate the theme.

“Drumlines are exciting to watch. Saturday’s competition will be no exception,” Barr said.

Admission is $7 for the entire day. For information, email to Tonia Beavers at bjdrumline@gmail.com.

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