In the upcoming football season, the University of Findlay marching band and majorettes will be accompanied by a new color guard squad. A color guard is a team that performs choreographed dances and routines with various equipment, including flags and rifles, to enhance and interpret the music of a marching band show. While the new team began training in April, they are accepting new members.
Kelley Hutton, majorette advisor who recently took on the role of color guard advisor, said incoming students have always expressed an interest in color guard. “Every year at new student registration, somebody always wants to do the color guard,” she said. “Because I do the majorettes, they tell them to reach out to me, but those are two completely different things.” In Fall 2018, the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences(CAHSS) agreed to fund the squad.
Sarah Niese, fifth year pharmacy student and graduate assistant student worker for the color guard, wanted Findlay to start color guard since her freshman year. “When I found out that there was no color guard here, I still wanted to be a part of the marching band so I learned to play the cymbals and played in the Marching Oiler Brass for three years,” she said. Now she will help implement the color guard into the band by choreographing routines and directing the team. In high school, Niese made many memories, became a better leader, and found a passion for color guard. She is excited that these are all things Findlay students can have through a university color guard experience.
Students in any major can participate in the color guard. The team is currently at nine students with room to grow up to 14. Just like the majorettes, the color guards are in charge of choreographing all their routines. Hutton said this will be a big undertaking for the new color guard, but expects them to make a positive impact for the band. “I feel like it’s going to be a big thing” Hutton said. “Visually on the football field it’s going to compliment the band. When I watch college football, a lot of the marching bands don’t have majorettes, but almost all have flags. I think it brings the band up a level.”
Color guard members are expected to pay for their uniform, warm-up, and any additional pieces they wish to purchase such as hairpieces, earrings, or sweatshirts. Members should be prepared to spend $250 throughout the season. A generous gift from the University of Findlay Curtain Raisers Society for the the Performing Arts and the CAHSS Dean’s office has helped with some equipment purchases. Members must be registered for the marching band course (MUSC 100), attend band camp for two weeks starting on Aug. 5, and commit to practicing every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday during the football season. Students with previous color guard experience are preferred. Those interested in joining the color guard can contact Kelley Hutton at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more, visit the marching band website.