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Local drumline to perform in inauguration parade

Posted at 10:49 AM, Jan 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-18 14:02:03-05

San Diego (KGTV)- After beating their way to the hearts of many across San Diego, a local drumline is marching into the national spotlight. The kids are excited to be marching towards the opportunity of a lifetime.

This month the Thunder Squad Drumline planned to be marching in Washington D.C. for the incoming Commander-in-Chief. But this year’s festivities will be a little different.

“We received an email that the inauguration was going to go virtual and that we were just to stand by for information,” says Tyra Hawthorne, Executive Director of Heartbeat Music and Performing Arts Academy.

The group was invited to play in the inauguration parade but, due to COVID-19 organizers decided to keep the crowds to a minimum.

“Even though its virtual now, it’s still an honor to be in it,” says Lead Drum Major Nasir Tapper.

The students say even though the event is virtual, it’s an opportunity of a lifetime.

“The kids in the band haven’t even touched an instrument like before they came,” says Section Leader, Johnnie Welborne. “Now, a year and a half later, they’re getting invited to parades like this.”

Hawethorne says 98 percent of her students come to the program with no previous musical training.

“They definitely come without experience but when they leave here they are totally different kids.”

The students were instructed to record a video of their performance and submit it to the parade committee. With hundreds of submissions, they hope to see their team marching across the screen.

“We’ve had some opportunities but, we’ve had some opportunities shut down. So just seeing us perform for once, that would be pretty cool,” says Welborne.