Under the quiet moonlit sky on Saturday night was a fierce competition and a packed stadium. The Richmond Hill High School marching band and color guard competed in the 38th Annual Coastal Empire Classic at Effingham County High School.
The competition hosted 15 high schools. Six bands competed in Class A, two in Class AA, three in class AAA and five in Class AAAA which include the Wildcats.
Scoring and adjudication was done by a music judge, visual judge, and general effect judge. Additionally, there was one judge each for drum major, color guard, percussion, and drill team/majorette.
The Wildcats brought home the following awards: Color Guard - Superior; Percussion - Superior; Drum Major - Superior; Music - Superior; Visual - Superior; General Effect - Superior.
Under the direction of band director Dr. Daniel Kiene, assistant band director Lia Snead and color guard instructor Marlon Harman, the band performed Scheherazade 1001 Arabian Nights.
“The music of Scheherazade really lends itself to being interpreted on the marching field and I think that our arranger and drill writer have done a great job giving us material to showcase the kid’s talent and work," Kiene said. "This combined with the fantastic color guard work from our long time guard instructor Marlon Harman gives us a very entertaining, challenging and very competitive show."
With this year's marching band and color guard consisting of over 200 students, including drum majors Andrew Kiene, Makayla Brown and Manuel Padilla, it takes volunteers to also help the students showcase their talent.
“The parents are with us literally every time we practice, chaperoning and helping out as needed, our administration is amazing in their support and our BOE is generous in staffing and material needs, so we are in a great position to compete effectively regardless of who we see at contests.” Kiene added.
On October 19th the Wildcats will compete in the 15th Annual Battle on the Border Georgia Bridgemen in Valdosta.
“We do improve on our show throughout the season. So even the show you see at Effingham will be different than the show at Valdosta or Ware County," Kiene said. "We add more levels of performance to our music and movement, we clean constantly to make the music and marching more precise and as the kids become more comfortable with the material, they tend to perform it even better.”