Over 90 hours of hard work and dedication has been put into the drumline’s indoor show entitled “Sail”. About three years ago the group began competing at WGI or Winter Guard International with shows such as “Perception”, “Direction”, and “Off The Beaten Path”, and to finish this year’s season off, the group traveled to Dayton, Ohio to compete in WGI World Championships. The drumline competed against about 50 other groups and finished tenth in the world from their class.
The show includes the popular song “Sail” by Awolnation and a stowaway being found on ship, ending with the sailors throwing the stowaway overboard.
Finishing first place at NTCA or North Texas Colorguard Association Championships just days before leaving for Ohio, the group left with confidence and excitement to see how they compared to groups from around the world.
“We had spent the last few months practicing for hours upon hours every week on our program and it had shown,” explains junior marimba player Bill Smith. “At every competition, our show had gotten better and better and the week before Dayton, we won NTCA Championships so we were all super excited to see how we compared to all these other groups from around the World.”
The group spent six days in Ohio, leaving Tuesday, April 17, returning home Sunday, April 22 and competing April 19 through 21. After the 16 hour drive to Ohio, percussion director Chad Mason explained how the group needed to continue practicing just hours before their performances.
“We rehearse roughly 6 to 8 hours a week and we needed to keep that rehearsal up after UIL so we got on a bus and went up to Dayton,” says Mason. “When we got there, there was a few locations, gymnasiums, and things that we had to unload our props and equipment to rehearse for a few hours to keep our hands moving between these performances.”
The group competed in the percussion scholastic open division against about 50 groups. The groups were split into two rounds and the first night they went, which was prelims, they ended seventh in the round, moving on to semifinals.
“We had to move onto semi finals which was that Friday night. We got ninth in that group, and that moved us on to finals on Saturday which they only took 15 of the 40 plus groups that were there,” describes Mason. “We ended up tenth place and we were one of the only groups to be in finals that was their first time to be at WGI Championships.”
Smith and fellow drumline members knew this year’s show was something different. Smith explains how the show was “on a level [they] had never experienced before, but after doing so well the first round of competition, [they] realized the full potential of what [the students] could achieve.”
The drumline has only been competing in WGI competitions for three years, not only making Timber Creek history by attending world championships, but Keller ISD history to be the first drumline to attend and make finals.
“It really goes to show what a small group of talented individuals can accomplish when they set their minds to it,” describes Smith.
Watch a 360-degree look at a “Sail” practice:
Bass drum player Tyler Blackburn explains how the group had come so far in the short amount of years competing, having the biggest change be “the attitudes of the students.”
“Everyone really wanted to be apart of this group and did everything [we] needed to do and more. As a whole, the program has really made massive strides and accomplished all of the goals we set for ourselves” Blackburn said.
The drumline will perform their last performance of “Sail” after the percussion concert, May 12th at 1pm in the FAC.
“This group of people is going to go down as trailblazers for the entire district, WGI, and for future Timber Creek generations. Going into the season I don’t think I ever could have imagined being one of the top ten drumline’s in the world,” said Blackburn. “I will always remember the good and bad times that I’ve gone through from being in a group like this. But most importantly I will always remember the ones I talk about problems with, the ones I share laughs and memories with, the ones I cry with and the ones I call my second family and will love forever.”
Here are some photos from throughout the season: