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VISUAL

Andrew Clark Visual Caption Head
Connor Smethers Battery Visual Tech

Devon Brown Visual Tech

Katie Zheng Visual Tech

Paul Champion Visual Tech

Reid Griffin Visual Tech

Robby Chapa Visual Tech

Trevor Schachner Visual Tech

Akash Watsa Visual Tech

Morgan Clark Visual Tech

Josh Singleton Visual Tech

Julia Culp Visual Body/Choreographer

Sam Beeson Visual Intern
 

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ANDREW CLARK

Visual Caption Head

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Andrew Clark is a teacher active in the Atlanta area, who specializes in  teaching jazz music, and visual movement. Prior ensembles Andrew  has been associated with include the Troopers Drum and Bugle corps,  where he is the current visual caption head, Walton High School, who  have won outstanding visual at BOA events in 2021 and 2022, and Q2,  who has twice made finals at WGI World Championships, including the  highest score in the organization’s history. Andrew has a bachelors in  music education from Murray State University and a masters degree in  jazz studies/performance from the University of North Texas. He lives in  Marietta, GA.

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CONNOR SMETHERS

Battery Visual Tech

Connor Smethers was born and raised in Indiana. Eventually he found his way into the marching arts through his local high school program at Columbia City High School. As a performer, he was a member with Legends Drum and Bugle Corps from 2016-2019. As well as a performer with Genesis Indoor (PIW) in the WGI circuit from 2016-2019, Redline Percussion (PIW) 2020 and 2022, and Cap City Percussion (PIW) in 2021.

 

Connor has been a Music/Visual Educator and a Visual Designer since 2020. Since aging out he has worked with groups such as Legends Drum and Bugle Corps, Cap City Percussion, Redline Percussion, Cap City 2, Ascension Percussion, Homestead HS, Carroll HS, Hudsonville HS, Novi HS, and many other high schools in the Indiana/Michigan area. 

 

Currently, a majority of his time is spent writing drill, choreography, and teaching for a number of indoor percussion ensembles; he also currently serves as the visual coordinator for Cap City 2.

 

This will be Connor’s 2nd year on the visual team at Troopers and he is very excited to continue to be a part of the group's tremendous growth in the last couple of years.

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DEVON BROWN

Visual Tech

Devon Brown is a 23-year-old music major from Pasco, WA and returns for his second year with the Troopers. His DCI journey starts when he was 14 years old, marching at the Columbians in 2015 and 2016. Devon went on to march at the Seattle Cascades in 2017, then continued his career and aged out with the Boston Crusaders from 2018 to 2022. Devon currently is finishing his degree in music at Central Washington University and is incredibly excited for another season with the Troopers!

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KATIE ZHENG

Visual Tech 

Katie Zheng is a native of Madisonville, KY and began her drum corps career with Music City Drum and Bugle Corps. She continued her time marching as a cast member of the Santa Clara Vanguard before aging out at the Blue Devils. Katie comes from a background of over a decade of classical ballet training, as well as contemporary and lyrical dance styles. She is an alumnus of Murray State University, holding a Bachelor’s Degree in Music. She currently serves as the visual caption head and winds choreographer for Fishers High School in Fishers, Indiana. 

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PAUL CHAMPION

Visual Tech 

Paul Champion is a brass player and teacher who currently resides in Minneapolis. He has an undergraduate degree from Florida State University in music education. He spent 7 years as a band director in Florida and has worked with groups across the Southeast as a drill writer or staff member. As a drum corps member, he performed with Carolina Crown for 3 years. Before working with Troopers, Paul was a visual staff member at Legends Drum and Bugle Corps based in Kalamazoo, MI.

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REID GRIFFIN

Visual Tech 

S. Reid Griffin is an active marching arts instructor and clinician in the middle Georgia area. As a performer, Reid spent seven years in Drum Corps International's elite World Class division, touring as a brass performer with the Spirit of Atlanta Drum and Bugle Corps, The Cavaliers Drum and Bugle Corps, and the Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps. During this time, he achieved numerous top six finals placements, served as a member of the CrownBRASS student leadership team, and performed in a hornline which was awarded the Jim Ott Award for Best Brass Performance.

As a choreographer and visual clinician, Reid has designed for and instructed scholastic and independent marching arts programs in Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Ohio, and Wyoming. He currently serves as a member of the visual staff for the DCI World Class Finalist Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps (Casper, WY), as a member of the visual staff for the WGI Open Class Finalist Atlanta Q2 Indoor Percussion (Atlanta, GA), and is the Program Director for East Coweta High School Indoor Percussion (Sharpsburg, GA).

Outside of his involvement with teaching the marching arts, Reid is a Jr. High School English/Language Arts teacher at The Academy for Classical Education ACE, a National Blue Ribbon School in Macon, GA. Reid also serves as a member of the Board of Directors for The Cavaliers Alumni Association. He lives in Macon with his fiancé Andrew and their two poodles, Charlie and Livi.

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ROBBY CHAPA

Visual Tech 

Robby currently lives in Katy, Texas and is starting his second year as a 8th grade U.S. history teacher at Mayde Creek Junior High. Robby is entering his tenth year of working as a visual tech in the state of Texas, and has worked with schools such as I.H. Kempner, Morton Ranch, Seven Lakes, and Fulshear high school. His drum corps experience consisted of four summers at the Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps after which he was a member of the visual team in 2017 and 2018. In 2021 he returned to the Troopers and is currently about to begin his sixth season as a member of the Troopers visual staff.

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TREVOR SCHACHNER

Visual Tech 

Trevor Schachner is a music and visual instructor from Spartanburg, South Carolina. He is currently a full time product manager based out of Washington, DC. He received his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering and a minor in music from UofSC in May of 2019. Trevor also received his masters degree in technology innovation and entrepreneurship from the University of South Carolina in December of 2019. Trevor spent four summers with Carolina Crown as a member of the hornline playing mellophone from 2015 - 2018. He is an avid arranger, choreographer, and designer as well as an active visual and musical instructor for high school bands around the country. 

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AKASH WATSA

Visual Tech 

Originally from Troy, Michigan, Akash Watsa completed his undergraduate study at Central Michigan University (CMU), where he studied saxophone under Professor John Nichol. In May, 2021 he received his bachelor's degree from CMU in music education and mathematics. At CMU, Akash was a member of several ensembles, including Wind Symphony, Saxophone Ensemble, Apex Saxophone Quartet, Oceania Saxophone Quartet, 6th Man Band, and the Chippewa Marching Band.


 

In DCI, Akash was a performing member of Legends Drum and Bugle Corp from 2017-2019 on tuba. While at Legends, Akash received the highest music and visual awards attainable as a brass member. Akash also gained performance experience as a member of Metamorphosis Winterguard at CMU from 2020-2021.


 

As an educator, Akash has worked with several ensembles. In 2020, Akash served with the Chippewa Marching Band as an undergraduate teaching assistant where he redesigned and implemented the visual fundamentals program. He has also worked with the Troy Athens High School Marching Band and Roseville Marching Band as a visual, brass, and woodwind instructor. Currently, Akash is a Choir and Band Director at Washtenaw International High School and Middle Academy in Ypsilanti, Michigan. However, he continues to stay involved with the marching arts, working with Walled Lake Consolidated Schools and Walled Lake Percussion, serving as Visual Caption Head for both programs.


 

This will be Akash's third year working on the visual team at Troopers and he could not be more excited!

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MORGAN CLARK

Visual Tech 

Morgan returns in 2024 for her third year with the Troopers visual staff. She marched her first two years of drum corps with Legends DBC, before aging out in 2018 with the Bluecoats. Morgan has worked with various local marching bands including Des Moines Roosevelt and her alma mater Carlisle High School.

 

Morgan attended Drake University where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication. In her day-to-day, Morgan works as a marketing specialist in Des Moines.

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JOSH SINGLETON

Visual Tech 

Josh Singleton, a native of Asheville, North Carolina, pursued his passion for music education at  Appalachian State University, where he earned his Bachelor's degree. During his college years,  he actively participated in the music scene, serving on the leadership team for the Marching  Mountaineers, performed with various ensembles, and was a member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. 

Now, Josh lives in the Metro-Atlanta area and is in his sixth year of teaching high school band.  He's currently the Assistant Director of Bands at Ola High School in McDonough, Georgia.  

Josh's drum corps journey started in 2016 with the Boston Crusaders as a baritone player and  continued on in 2017 with Carolina Crown. After performing, he transitioned into instructional  roles, joining the brass staff at Legends Drum and Bugle Corps in 2018 and then as a visual staff  member in 2019. In 2021, he started at Troopers Drum and Bugle Corps as part of the visual  staff. He is excited to be returning and is looking forward to the upcoming season!

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JULIA CULP

Visual Body/Choreographer

Julia Culp is a Nashville based educator who currently teaches band and orchestra at Freedom Middle School. She is a two time graduate of Vanderbilt University, holding both a Bachelor's in Music and a Master's in Education.

Julia’s love for the marching arts is rooted in her robust dance background with almost 20 years of formal dance training and performance experience. While at Vanderbilt, Julia performed with and choreographed for Vanderbilt's Vitality Dance Company, and, in her final years, she led the company as its Artistic Director. She continues her dance education today by participating in the Nashville dance community.

She spent her DCI performing years with both the Troopers and Blue Stars hornlines. As a visual educator, Julia has taught on the Blue Stars Visual Team and with multiple high school programs in the Nashville area, including The Franklin Band. Julia is excited to be returning to the Troopers to serve as a member of the Visual Team.

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SAM BEESON

Visual Intern 

Sam Beeson is a trumpet player from Kalamazoo MI. He holds an Associate of Arts from Kalamazoo Valley Community College and is graduating from Western Michigan University with a Bachelor of Music Education degree in April 2024. During his time at WMU, Sam worked with a number of marching band programs in the area in a variety of roles. He worked as Brass and Visual Caption head at Mattawan High School, Brass and Visual Instructor at Portage Central high school, and Visual Instructor at Rockford High School. Additionally, Sam has performed with Legends Drum and Bugle Corps in 2019, as well as with Boston Crusaders in 2022 and 2023.

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