On today’s Band of the Week, we are featuring the Dutch Fork Silver Spirit Marching Band.
In their second year under director Jeremy Ley, Dutch Fork came out sporting new black and white uniforms representing chaos and order.
Their 2019 production “The Conquest of Nature,” resulted in two “Best Percussion” awards during the season, and scored them 7th place at the SCBDA 4A State Championships.
For this week’s interview, we talked to 2019 percussion captain, Christopher Lewis, about his experiences in the Dutch Fork Silver Spirit Marching Band.
Christopher Lewis is a senior at Dutch Fork, and played Snare during the marching season. He has been in the band for 5 years, and has also made the SCBDA All-State Band multiple times..
What makes the Dutch Fork marching band special?
It takes the rookies in and makes them feel at home so they can go into high school with a comfortable group of friends. The seniors are very welcoming as well.
Which year experiences been your favorite, and why?
My senior year because I got to interact with a lot of the rookies and I thought that my friends and I had turned into the upperclassmen we hoped to turn into when we were 8th graders.
How has working with a new band director affected the program?
It’s given us a fresh start to treat everyone in the band equally and get us in a mindset to be the best we can possibly be. It’s given our shows a lot more creativity and the shows usually have a deeper meaning rather than a basic concept.
Dutch Fork placed 7th at State, how do you feel about this placement?
All the bands we went against this year got a lot better and the numbers that we get at competition don’t speak for the companionship and amazing times of hard work and success we have had throughout the season.
How did it feel to win Best Percussion twice this year?
It felt like the combination of all the previous years’ hard work and we were happy that all the hard work finally paid off for my class. We had an amazing group of rookies and Mr. Frith (percussion instructor) was a big factor in sparking the growth.
How do you think the band will do in the coming years?
I think that right now the Dutch Fork band is in the middle stages of a rebuilding process that will take 2-3 years but with Mr. Ley and the staff that he builds around us they will become a powerhouse in the coming years.
A complete list of Dutch Fork’s placement at competitions this year:
- Midlands Marching Classic at River Bluff HS (Class AAAA, 2nd place, 75.80) Best Percussion
- Lowcountry Invitational at Wando HS (Class AAAA, 1st place, 72.725) Best Percussion
- Johnson City BOA Regional competition (Prelims, Class AA, 5th place,16th place overall, 76.00)
- SCBDA 4A Lower State (6th place, 85.50)
- SCBDA 4A State Championships (7th place, 84.55)
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