From ‘Red and Black’ to ‘Rocky Top’

Beth KinnaneFountain City, Our Town Teens

Three graduating members of the Bobcat Band had a signing day of their own at Knoxville Central High School on Tuesday. Elijah Ditmore, Thomas Hooper and Devin Hopson all signed letters of commitment to the University of Tennessee and the Pride of the Southland Marching Band.


Ditmore plays the alto saxophone, is a former member of the Knoxville Jazz Middle School Orchestra and a 2-year member of the Knoxville Jazz Youth Orchestra. Among his many accolades are two years as a member of the Knox County Honors Band and being presented by his band directors with the Louis Armstrong Award. Ditmore plans to major in business with double minors in jazz studies and music business.

Hooper plays the trumpet, is also a former member of the Knoxville Jazz Middle School Orchestra and a 2-year member of the Knoxville Jazz Youth Orchestra. He was also First Chair Trumpet in the Knox County Honor Band and presented by his band directors with the John Philip Sousa Band Award. Hooper finished academically in the top 10% of his class and was awarded a Volunteer Scholarship to attend UTK. He plans to major in pre-pharmacy and minor in music and culture.

Hopson plays clarinet and has been the section leader and woodwind captain for two years. His honors include All-East Band for three years, All-State Band for two years and Knox County Honors Band for three years. A member of the National Honor Society, Hopson was presented with the Central High Band Director’s Award this year. Voted “wittiest” by his classmates, Hopson graduates with a 4.4 GPA and plans to major in cultural anthropology with a minor in music.

O’Dell Willis and Norman Woodall would approve.

Beth Kinnane is community news editor for KnoxTNToday.com

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