The Athens Review
The Athens Rotary Club dined to the sounds of old standards and spiritual songs played by the Trinity Valley Community College Wind Ensemble, Thursday, then heard from the director.
Michael Matchael told the Rotarians that the band program is busy throughout the year and brought a visual presentation highlighting some of their work Concerts, football games and parades dot the calendar throughout the year. This Saturday, at 10 a.m, the Cardinal Regiment marches in the Dallas Christmas Parade.
“There’ll be four television stations on the parade route. Please watch for us. You should be able to see us live somewhere,” Matchael said.
Thousands are expected to brave the chilly weather to see the entries.
Events like the one in Dallas help spread the TVCC name and the reputation of the red and white, military clad band beyond the counties where the school’s classes are located.
“I’m very proud of the work that they’ve done. The keep improving year after year,” Matchael said.
Michael Matchael became marching band director at TVCC last year. Before that, his career included stints as director of jazz band, pep band and orchestra. For six years he was a non-commissioned officer in the U.S. Army.
The Regiment will have a bright, new look bringing up the rear of the band.
“Wednesday, we had six new sousaphones come in — beautiful,” Matachael said.
They replace instruments that almost date back to the days of John Phillip Sousa himself, who died in 1932. Two of the old instruments were made between 1935 and 1940. The other four were manufactured between 1940 and 1945.
“We’ve been using 70 to 75 year old instruments in the band,” Matchael said. “They were well made, but they were well past their prime. They were costing us more to repair than to buy new ones.”