Elliot Van Noy

Nathan Tallant Glows as Drum Major

On the first football game of the year, while everyone else was watching the Bobcats and Maroons clash on the field, I was watching Nathan Tallant. He stood with his right leg cocked to the side, a casual stance for someone in charge of that many people. I took out my camera to start shooting pictures of him, and he laughed and held his hand in front of his face. Somehow, this grand, power-holding master of music is still humble. This is his third year as drum major of the Radford Regiment Marching Band, and he’s conducting the marchers and twirlers more confident than ever before. The band preforms the Rolling Stones’ “Paint it Black” from their show, Out of Darkness, the opening piano keys clearly recognizable across the stadium. When Tallant’s hands lifted, he brought the horns, woodwinds, and percussion section into the mix, bringing music that seemed like had been rehearsed for years.

His face is serious as the musicians stride across the field; game on or, play on, it says. His eyes are scanning the flutes now, fingers catching the solo of Alexis Hefley, senior. After the music stops, his face is all relief; he’s not smiling yet, but when I run to him to give him a giant hug, he’s laughing again.

“That was beautiful Nathan,” I tell him. “Not beautiful yet, but soon.” The Radford Marching Band has a season of promise ahead, especially in Nathan Tallant’s “talented” hands

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