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Band members work to learn a new routine

(ran EO edition)

Shade, water and ice were like magnets for East Lake High School Silver Sound Marching Band campers practicing on the school's field Thursday _ and it was still morning.

"Is everybody okay? Nobody's going to pass out on me, right?" asked instructor Derek Chaisson. The University of South Florida student is one of the teachers at band camp for the fourth year.

"We dropped about five beats that time and we're going under tempo," he said. "Keep those feet moving, keep 'em in time and rev 'em up!"

"Vroom! Vroom!" the band answered.

They were starting the fourth day of band camp. In just two weeks, the band will learn to play and march in an entire show. It takes teachers, teamwork and sweat.

"They work hard _ that's the bottom line," said Brad Barnes, the East Lake High director of bands.

Barnes said winning trophies is not the objective.

"My goal for them is to be the best they can be," he said. "Accolades are always nice, but they don't matter if the kids don't feel good about themselves."

Two drum majors, Ivey Harrell, 18, and Melissa Rivers, 16, both seniors from East Lake, are helping to get the band up to speed.

"We're kind of like the leaders of the band," Melissa said. "We have to conduct, keep tempo and make sure it all comes together. If someone talks or hits a wrong note, it's our job to point it out to them."

"So basically, we're the eyes and ears of the band," Ivey said.

During practice Thursday, the drum majors waved their arms to keep the band in tempo and directed them through the choreographed marching drills.

The band will perform a free preview show Fridayat 6 p.m. on the football field at East Lake High School.

Anne Lubner of East Lake, the band's vice president of information, said, "Anybody is welcome to come." Community support helps students to pay for the activity.

Lubner said the band is still looking for new members _ even if they don't yet play a musical instrument. The color guard is also open to new members.

Call (727) 943-0633.

_ If you have news or photos about East Lake schools, churches, businesses, neighborhood groups, community organizations or people, call Theresa Blackwell at (727) 445-4229, fax it to her at (727) 445-4206, e-mail blackwellsptimes.com or mail material to her at the North Pinellas Times, 34342 U.S. 19 N, Palm Harbor, FL 34684.

SILVER SOUND BAND CAMP: Ivey Harrell, 18, a senior at East Lake High School and one of two drum majors (with Melissa Rivers, 16), keeps the tempo as the East Lake Silver Sound Marching Band practices a routine during band camp Thursday at the school. The band will perform a free preview show Friday at 6 p.m. on the East Lake High football field.

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