Brett has been obsessed with Marching Band and with DCI since he first stepped onto the Midway field as a freshman. He literally counts down the days from the last football game in December to when Summer Band starts. He is never as truly happy as he is when he is on the field in the summer heat, 10 hours a day marching. It is his true joy. I cannot believe the dedication and how much those kids LOVE to be in the heat playing for 8-10 hours a day. At the end of Brett’s Junior year he auditioned and become brass co-captain of the Midway Marching Band.
From Brett’s freshman year when his friend and band-mate, Devon Walker was killed, I knew Midway Marching Band was very special. They are incredibly close and truly are a tight “family”. But I had no idea how special it was until Pam Hyatt took over the following year. There are no words to describe her impact on not only the 120 or so band members, but on my son. She is never too busy for any student or parent who may need encouragement or guidance. When Brett was doubting himself about auditioning for DCI to which he had obsessed for over 3 years, she immediately stepped up and gave him the push he needed to fulfill his dream of becoming a contracted member of a world class drum and bugle corps.
Here is what she sent me about Brett:
His passion and talent in music has been an inspiration to me. He has made an incredible impact on the Midway Band. The progress we have made over the time I have been has been catalyzed by his drive to make this program better. I don’t think he realizes the positive effect he has made on this band and on me. I know that on my bad days his energy and enthusiasm helps me get back on my feet and dig even deeper to progress this program. My life has been enhanced by knowing this young man and I will never forget the impact he has had on the Midway band or for me personally.
When he got his first call back, I sent her this video (Brett is far right). She was moved to tears, as was I, listening to it. (attached drop box file) He auditioned for the Texas Crossman and received a call back but was cut on their final auditions. She never let him give up and he continued his auditions for the Madison Wisconsin Scouts. He received a call back and flew to Indianapolis the weekend before Christmas for final auditions, where at the end of the weekend he was offered a contract!
Each month Brett flies to Indianapolis or Wisconsin for training. He has worked at Raising Canes in Hewitt since he was 16 and he pays for all of his airfare, parking, gas, Uber for travel back and forth each month. DCI is also very expensive. We have had to raise $4600 for the monthly training and then the cost of the summer tour. Brett was able to raise all but $1300 by donations from his band community and my family and friends who have watched his dream turn into a passion and then into a reality.
They were officially to start Spring training May 17 and begin their nationwide tour immediately following in June. Sadly, DCI cancelled their international tour this summer due to the Coronavirus. Fortunately, the Madison Scouts extended Brett’s contract for next season in 2021.
This is the musical equivalent of being drafted to play for the MLB, NBA, NFL and NHL. To my knowledge, there have only been 2 seniors to make it since 2008 from Midway, Cooper Johnson and Brett Smith. There have been other Midway students to make it as Freshman in college too. Two that I know for sure are Caden Glick and Trent Scott. Its an incredible accomplishment and huge honor. They deserve to all be recognized and for Midway to recognize them and Mrs. Hyatt. Without her, and the incredible music program she has put together, these young men might not have had the courage to even try. I know for a fact if it wasn’t for her, Brett wouldn’t have had the confidence to try. Now look at him!
Brett was accepted to the University of Oregon, University of Utah and University of North Texas. He plans on attending UNT this fall to major in music education and march for the Green Brigade Marching Band! I can’t think of a better testament of what Mrs. Hyatt has meant to Brett, than to have him to decide to major in music education and one day inspire others as she has inspired him.