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Wittig serving as drum major at James Clemens

Emily Wittig will serve as the first drum major for the newest band in town at James Clemens High School.

Wittig, a junior, plays oboe and played alto saxophone last year in marching band. “I started playing in seventh grade, but I’d always shown interest in music in elementary school,” she said. “I decided to continue to pursue music in middle school.”

Her love of music lead to an audition for drum major. “I decided that was the path to take to further my musical education. I also admired all the drum majors I had seen and hoped I could fill their shoes and help the other musicians at my school and maybe even become a role model to them,” Wittig said.

Learning she would be drum major, she broke down in tears. “I cried like a baby. I was just so happy,” Wittig said.

Only recently, “the nerves” set in for upcoming responsibilities. “As the music comes out and band camp gets closer, it becomes more real,” she said. “It is a little nerve wracking but really exciting as well.”

As drum major, Wittig will be expected to keep the band on task and focused. She must be “the example” for fellow students and help any section or individual having trouble with their part to produce the best show possible.

Keith Anderson is band director at James Clemens.

Band camp will start on campus at James Clemens at the end of July. The newly organized group will have four members in the front ensemble, seven in the battery or marching percussion, 10 color guard members and about 70 instrumentalists.

In her sophomore year, Wittig ranked sixteenth academically in her class.

Her parents are Rodger and Tracey Wittig. Her older brother Ryan will be a junior at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. When brother Eric returns from Marine boot camp, he will attend Auburn University as a sophomore.

Wittig hopes to attend the University of Alabama and pursue a minor in music. “I’d really like to be a drum major of the Million Dollar Band!” she said.

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