The smell of sunscreen and bug spray has permeated the air around Tullahoma High School as the Tullahoma High School Marching Band began its annual band camp this week.
All 160 Tullahoma Band members convened at the high school on Monday to begin the 2019 marching season.
The band will spend the next week and a half learning how to march, play and move to the music of the program’s 2019 halftime show “Danse Macabre.”
This year’s show will be a spook-tacular celebration of all things creepy, with Halloween-themed music.
Band officials announced in April a combination of both classical music and popular music will make up the band’s show.
Songs include the theme from the 1993 Disney film “Hocus Pocus,” Giuseppe Verdi’s “Requiem, Once Upon a December” from the 1997 Dreamworks movie musical “Anastasia,” and the show’s namesake, “Danse Macabre,” an operatic tone poem written by French composer Camille Saint-Saens.
Band officials also announced a new addition to the show this month. Band Director Justin Scott said the band will also perform “This is Halloween” from the 1993 Tim Burton film “The Nightmare Before Christmas.”
Scott said the tune added a little more light-hearted Halloween-themed fun for the band, and audiences will also enjoy the popular tune.
“We decided to do a mash-up of ‘Dies Irae’ and ‘This is Halloween,’” he said. “It’s come together great, and the audience should love it.”
The band has a rigorous schedule ahead for the next week and a half, with seven-hour days this week and eight-hour days all next week.
And not even the threat of rain will stop the band from learning all it needs to learn for the show. According to Scott, should inclement weather prevent the band from learning their marching fundamentals outside, they will simply move everyone into either one of the gymnasiums inside the high school.
All the hours the band spends learning how to properly march, hold their stances and play their music will allow the band to be primed for its three band competitions in September, as well as its 10 weekly performances on Friday nights for the Tullahoma Wildcats football team.
The band will also be preparing for a special performance in Neyland Stadium with the University of Tennessee Pride of the Southland Marching Band.
The band was invited to perform with The Pride on Saturday, Sept. 7, when the Tennessee Volunteers take on Brigham Young University Cougars.
The band won’t perform its own halftime show during their time in Neyland. Instead, they will have to learn drill and music for a brand new show with The Pride.
The Tullahoma Band will get to experience a Tennessee game day just as The Pride does, from the famous march to the stadium, performing stands tunes in the stadium and marching on Shields-Watkins Field.
Tennessee Football officials announced the kickoff time for the BYU game will be 6 p.m. Eastern time on Saturday, Sept. 7.
Erin McCullough may be reached at email@example.com.