Whether it’s playing at a pep assembly, marching in a parade, or putting on am impressive half-time show, you can bet the Martins Ferry Purple Rider band will put their heart and soul into every performance.
Several of the band’s members say that music has been their passion since they were young children and being in the band is an experience they will never forget.
Julia Wayne is in her 26th year as band director. She says the work ethic of this year’s group is second to none.
Ryan Wolf is Wayne’s assistant, and he says the kids have come a long way in a short amount of time.
“We’ve got five seniors, and we actually have a lot of juniors this year, but we also have a lot of young students that just started to play their instruments this summer. To me that’s the most impressive thing because we’ve thrown a lot of things at them at once and they have responded very well,” said Wolf.
“This year’s group I feel we are a lot closer than normal. We have picked up the speed. Even brand new members that have just walked in from their 8th grade and freshman year and are doing absolutely amazing,” said Field Commander Dan Hoffman.
There are over thirty members in this year’s band, which includes a flag corps and dance line. They say it’s a family-like atmosphere, and they have been hard at work all summer perfecting a high energy half time show.
The half-time show features a tribute to composer John Williams. They play a medley of theme songs from action movies like Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Superman and Harry Potter.
Band member say there is nothing like the excitement of performing in front of a big crowd on Friday night.
“When we take the light and the crowd all in one, it is the most over whelming, exceptional feeling in the world. It feels like your time to shine and we do shine and that’s what makes me proud of it,” said Field Commander Dakota McGrew.
Congratulations to the Martins Ferry Purple Rider Band.