When Adrian Smith was just a child, he was enthralled by the marching band at a local Fayetteville high school — the E.E. Smith Magnificent Marching Machine (MMM).
Smith was bound and determined he’d march in the MMM one day, and he did. Now, after many years as a musician, conductor, and music director he is leading a band of his own.
On June 3, Smith was named band director at North Rowan High School. The community will have a chance to meet Smith through a Webinar set for 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 16. Community members are invited to register for the event using this link https://tinyurl.com/nrhsband.
“We are thrilled to have Mr. Smith joining us,” says Meredith Williams, North’s principal. “He has a deep love for North Rowan and a passion for serving students. Mr. Smith, having leveraged his amazing musical talent throughout our community, is a role model for our students. He is a testament to the ways our students can use their own passions, especially for music, to guide their own True North.”
Smith’s goal is for North to have “the finest fine arts program in the state of North Carolina.”
Smith has always had great people around him, and that’s part of his plan at North as well. He’ll have other band directors help with band camp this summer.
Smith most recently served as interim band director at Carson High School after Jeff Street — who inaugurated the program when the school opened in 2006 — left to go to Salisbury High School as an assistant principal. He’s also had experience as a substitute teacher at North, along with stints at North Middle and Knox Middle.
For the North band program to be successful, he says, “We have to have support. We have to have money or time from parents, or both. I’m the band director, but I’m a band booster as well.”
He’ll pay his dues just like everyone else, he says.
He wants the band to be the best it can be, and to grow. His eventual goal is 328 members.
Smith wants band members to make long-lasting memories each year they’re in the band program. And he wants the crowd to be engaged as well, thinking, “Wow! That was fun!” after each football game.
Smith plans to place a student section beside the band.
Smith plans to work with NRHS Head Football Coach Nygel Pearson, he says, “because the band’s job is to entertain the crowd and support the football team.”
His time away from work still revolves around music. As of July 1, he’ll have been music director at Cornerstone Church for 13 years. He’s also served twice at Jerusalem Baptist Church, which is when he started going to North games. Since 2011, he’s been been music director for more than 20 musicals for Piedmont Players Theatre, Lee Street Theatre, Catawba College, Livingstone Theatre, and Theatre Charlotte.
Smith and his wife, Kiyana — a North Rowan grad — have four children and one granddaughter.
Smith studied music at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and plans to enroll this fall to complete his degree, which he expects to finish in 2022.
Use this link to register for the meet and greet webinar on Tuesday June 16th at 7 pm https://tinyurl.com/nrhsband.