The Montevallo Marching troubadours get ready for the new school year

Published 3:19 pm Monday, July 31, 2023

By BARTON PERKINS | Staff Writer

MONTEVALLO – The Montevallo Marching Troubadours began their band camp on Monday, July 17, in preparation for their upcoming year.

“We get out there early,” said Brian Hodges, director of bands for Montevallo Middle School and High School. “We go from 7:30 until 10 a.m. outside, and then we come inside for a couple of hours. So, we’ve been working from 7:30 until 12. Take a break for an hour, and then our percussion section verses for another few hours, and so does our auxiliary color guard.” 

Brian Hodges has been the director of bands for Montevallo Middle and High School for the past three years. Before that, he spent years working in different middle and high schools throughout the Jefferson and Shelby County areas teaching Jazz, Blues and saxophone sections. 

For the three years Hodges has spent at Montevallo, the program has gone through several trials and tribulations, including COVID-19. Despite this, the Montevallo band has continued to move forward and evolve as a program. Notably, the program has grown from 33 to 50 students in the program this year alone.

“With this being my third year, the relationships within the program are growing,” Hodges said. “And I’m really excited about growing with the students. And, now I’ve been teaching these students for three years. For most of them, that’s the majority, if not all, of their experience. And so just kind of developing the program, the way that I would like for it to go. We really have a lot coming together this year.”

This year, Montevallo’s band will be putting on a show called ‘“Montevallo Mixtape.”

“It’s basically themed around ‘Guardians of the Galaxy,’” Hodges said.

Along with the marching band, Hodges is also excited about the recent strides the Montevallo jazz program has taken and the positive effects that it has had on the music culture of Montevallo Middle and High school.

“Last year, we invited Ken Peplowski, a nationally known jazz clarinetist from New York, and this year, because of the success of that program, we’ve added a middle school jazz band that will be meeting every day,” Hodges said. “So not only will we have a high School jazz band meeting every day, but a middle school jazz band as well. That’s a huge boost to our program.”