Road to the ‘Roses’: excitement builds as Honors Band gears-up for Pasadena

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A sneak-peak of uniforms, logistics & fundraising 

By Kim Chiomento, Staff Writer, The Times

KENNETT – The long and very exciting journey is nearly complete for the 154 member Calvacade of Bands Honors Band; scheduled to participate in the iconic 126th Tournament of Roses Parade – Thursday, Jan. 1, 2015.

This huge logistical undertaking is being lead by Unionville High’s (UHS) band director, G. Scott Litzenberg. Other members of the Honor Band’s leadership team include: Mary Litzenberg, UHS Color Guard Instructor, Cody Stafford, UHS Drum Line Instructor, Anton Romano, Kennett High’s (KHS) Band Director, Kathy Corcoran, KHS Color Guard Instructor, plus Mitch Adams, the Co-Director, Paul Smith Assistant Director and Mark Thurston, Percussion Director.

Litzenberg remarks, “It’s so nice to have such highly qualified people leading this effort. It’s actually a pretty amazing to see how few people we are using to put this all together… I’m very proud of the team and what we are doing to make this happen.”

The band is a diverse group of talented students representing among the best of 38 area high schools bands; and consists of 122 musicians and 32 color guard members, with approximately 50 students representing both the UHS and KHS bands. These students have made an incredible time and financial commitment and their efforts are about to be rewarded on the national stage.

The Cavalcade of Bands Association is a regional competition circuit with bands participating from throughout the Mid Atlantic region. The honor band will showcase the positive impact music education has on students, and its power to bring people together.

Drum roll please....the 2015 Calvacade of Bands Tournament of Roses uniforms

Drum roll please… The Calvacade of Bands Tournament of Roses uniforms

For any band, uniforms make a big statement and are a core part of its identity; and when a band is about to be seen by millions of viewers from around the world, the pressure is certainly on to create a “wow” factor. We are excited to share with our Times readers a sneak-peak of the stunning uniforms these local student-marchers will be proudly wearing. As a part of making a grand statement and embracing the pageantry of this national celebration, the uniform design team has created an impressive design that incorporates live roses both adorning the band uniforms, hats and will also be worn in the color guard’s hair.

Despite often being seen as cross-town rivals, a great part of this journey and story has been the ability of energized UHS & KHS families to put aside their school loyalties, and come together to form the Kennett-Unionville Band Boosters (KUBB) club with a unified goal to maximize their strategic (and challenging) fundraising efforts.

The road to Pasadena does come at a significant cost; the Calvacade Honors Band fundraising still has a way to go and remains hopeful that the local community will continue to rally in their support in their final fundraising efforts. This week, Exelon Generation, KSQ, announced a $5,000 grant that will help build upon the generosity of previous grants from the Kennett Run, George Krapf & Sons and the Dansko Foundation. The balance of the cost of getting to Pasadena, including uniforms, lodging and food will fall upon students and their families.

It’s not too late to help this dedicated group get over their fundraising “hump” and help them defray the cost of getting to Pasadena; you can visit the KUBB booster’s website: www.kubbTOR.org where you can donate online and view a list of their upcoming fundraisers. The KUBB has also strategically placed ‘Pennies for Pasadena’ collection jars at area merchants. Supporters can also send donations via mail:

Unionville Marching Band Boosters/KUBB
P.O. Box 894
Mendenhall, PA 19357

The theme for this year’s Tournament of Roses Parade is ‘Inspiring Stories.’ The Calvacade Honors Band created a field show incorporating this theme entitled ‘The Inspiring Story of Immigration of America’ including an introduction of ‘God Bless America’, followed by ‘Russian Sailors Dance’ and the exciting Spanish Tune, ‘Bularia.’ The field performance will conclude with an arrangement of the ‘Stars and Stripes Forever’ entitled ‘Our National March.’ For their nationally televised Tournament of Roses Parade Performance – January 1, 2015, they will be performing both ‘God Bless America’ and our ‘National March.’

The 2015 Calvacade of  Bands Honors Band Color Guard proudly display their Tournament of Roses uniforms

The Calvacade of Bands – Honors Band Color Guard proudly display their Tournament of Roses uniforms

In addition to performing in the prestigious televised parade, KHS and UHS band members will be spending five days in California and perform their field show with other bands from across the world; as well as performing in Disneyland and also exploring the arts culture throughout the Los Angeles area.

If you are hoping to catch a local performance and send-off this hard working group with a big cheer, then mark your calendars for the preview show to be held in the Unionville High School Stadium, Saturday, December 20th – 3:30 PM. Following the performance, the band packs-up their gear and luggage and departs for Pasadena in two shifts: December 26 & 27th.

For and official Tournament of Roses Parade schedule, events, and related fun facts visit www.tournamentofroses.com.

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