Pearl River County marching bands receive top ratings

Published 7:00 am Friday, October 17, 2014

Last Saturday the Mississippi High School Activities Association hosted its annual Regional Marching Band Evaluation in Gulfport.
The marching bands, color guards and dance teams from each of the high schools in Pearl River County performed at the event and scored no lower than excellent and superior ratings.
Josh Tidwell, band director for the Poplarville Green Machine Band, said that each year high school band programs are rated.
“There are other competitions around the state and this evaluation is a qualifier for bands that wish to go to state championships in November,” Tidwell said.
Tidwell said his band did not perform as well as he had hoped this year.
“We encountered a number of issues that we just weren’t able to overcome,” Tidwell said.
For the past couple of years, the Green Machine has received a score of 2 or an excellent rating overall.
This year the band scored the following:
• Drum major, superior.
• Dance team, superior.
• Percussion, superior.
• Color guard, excellent.
• Three judges evaluated the band and they received three excellent scores.
Overall, the band received an excellent rating.
“Although we didn’t meet expectations this year, we are always looking to find new ways to develop,” Tidwell said. “The fall portion of the year is the most difficult. We are readying ourselves for the spring portion by getting a jump start on sight reading.”
Picayune Memorial High School marching band director John Cockrell said the Maroon Tide marching band scored all superiors Saturday for the second year in a row.
“There were seven different categories including drum major, color guard, dance team, drum line and three band judges,” Cockrell said. “In each category, our students received a superior rating.”
Because the Maroon Tide marching band received superior ratings, they qualify for the state championship to be held on Saturday Nov. 1, Cockrell said.
“Our band performed well, but we still have a lot of cleaning up to do before we compete again,” Cockrell said.
The Pearl River Central Blue Brigade also performed Saturday.
“The Blue Brigade earned superior ratings in drum major, color guard, dance team and majorette,” band director Joseph Smith said. “Percussion earned an excellent rating and superior ratings from the band judges.”
Find the Green Machine on Facebook at Poplarville Green Machine Band.
Learn about Picayune Memorial High School’s Maroon Tide at and the PRC Blue Brigade at

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