The Goshen Crimson Marching Band will have their largest band in 10 years to overcome a large hurdle for their 2010 marching season.
The theft of more than $10,000 from the band boosters’ coffers will keep the band closer to home for competitions and the band is aggressively raising funds to make up the difference.
"For the kids, it will be the same as it has always been," Director Tom Cox said. "We have to be as good as we can get."
The task will be harder with 170 students on the field, the largest band in Cox’s 10 years at the school.
"A bigger group has its pros and cons," he said. "More upperclassmen are sticking with it, and with a harder class load the fact they still have time to participate is a testament to the kids."
This year’s show is called "Changing Seasons," and features another aspect of Goshen’s music program, a string quintet. The music is Vivaldi’s "Four Seasons."
"It’s not traditionally what you think of when you think of marching band," Cox said. "It gives Goshen something different than anyone else."
"Spring," which traditionally features a violin solo, will have a jazz twist and showcase two talented senior saxophone players, Stephen Graber and Brett Gentle.
"No one else is going to be doing that on the field," Cox said.
Adding strings will make tuning even more critical — strings and wind instruments go opposite directions (sharp or flat) when the temperatures are extreme, he said.
The show’s drill will pose a challenge for students.
"It is really cleverly written how we get in and out of different spirals," Cox said. "I think everybody’s going to be talking about it."
After years on the bubble between classes, Goshen is again competing in Class B, but is solidly so because ISSMA moved the minimum enrollment for Class A from 1,700 to 1,800.
"We can certainly compete in Class A," Cox said. "In B we are matched with schools with the same resources."
The band competed in Bands of America competition last year and advanced to the regional finals. Cox said he wanted the band members to continue and try to better their finish, but will not be able to because of the financial cost.
"What we have been given is awesome," Cox said. "We are blessed to have been given that but we have a lot more road to go."