Colorguard Historical Society


Zydeco Colorguard

Location: Dayton, Ohio
Members: 5
Latest Activity: Jul 10, 2008

Zydeco history unfolds...


Zydeco “World” will be performing locally in the Tri-State Circuit and Mid-East Performance Association, as well as nationally at the WGI Dayton Regional, Mid-South Colorguard Championship and World Championships.

Zydeco was founded in 2007 and is under the direction of Byron Valentine with assistance from Lynsey Tyson and Patricia Simmons. The 2011 design team includes Joe Sowders, Michael Townsend, Juan “JC” Caceres and Richard Hinshaw. Additional staff and tour information may be found on our website:

Remember: the bad guys always have more fun…come and unleash your inner villain with us this season!





Zydeco Colorguard (Dayton, OH) regretfully announces their inactive status for the 2010 season.

The decision for Zydeco to take a season off was not an easy one to make; however the director and administrative board felt it necessary to ensure the long-term vitality of the organization. They believe this decision best serves the interests of Zydeco at the present time; and all involved are committed to Zydeco’s return to the competitive arena in 2011.

Byron Valentine, director of Zydeco says: “our growth over the past three seasons has been pretty tremendous. No one on the administrative staff - especially myself - were prepared to be where we are competitively when the decision to field a unit was made back in 2007. We honestly just need a year to evaluate, make sure that we are able to keep doing what we're doing (financially) and most importantly - ensure the best decisions are being made to keep Zydeco running successfully for the long term. This includes problem-solving the financial strains that have been placed on us by being in the Independent World class as a fairly novice unit. Like many other units, we are not sponsored by a drum corps, bingo hall, or individuals with deep pockets. In the current economic climate we have found ourselves pushed to the limit when it comes to financing the colorguard. Taking a year off will allow us the necessary time to research answers to this problem; as well as take in a much needed breath from the amazing whirlwind the past three seasons have been.

I, along with Zydeco’s administrative staff and design team thank everyone for their support. We look forward to coming back out in full swing and providing another unique, energetic and compelling production in 2011!”

Thanks for your support and everything else. You are the best...see you in the stands!

2009 Show

Zydeco Brings the Thunder

Zydeco Colorguard from Dayton, OH presents their 2009 program: "in evening's stillness we shall stare upon the storm"

Set to the music of Joseph Schwantner, who is known for his dramatic and unique style and as a gifted orchestral colorist, Zydeco will bring his musical storm to life. Schwantner has served on the faculties of The Juilliard School, Eastman School of Music, and the Yale School of Music, simultaneously establishing himself as a sought after composition instructor. Schwantner's compositional career has been marked by many awards, grants, and fellowships, including the Pulitzer Prize in 1979 and several Grammy nominations.

His compositions feature extensive use of percussion in the scoring, offering a new voice to the percussion section, as well as virtuosic challenges that were new to the percussion players- all of which lend themselves to the unique sound of Joseph Schwantner's compositions. Paired with the use of non-standard "time frame" notation, Schwantner helped re-invent what music could look, sound and feel like.

Although he has been principally influenced by George Crumb, Messiaen and Debussy, his music is at once identifiable by its luminous, bewitching sounds, chords of equal intervals and unusual effects.

One of his most well-known pieces, "in evening’s stillness", is considered by many to be one of the more important works of the modern wind ensemble repertoire. The composition was inspired by the following verse of poetry:

In evening’s stillness
a gentle breeze,
distant thunder
encircles the silence.

Zydeco’s design team members look to a new direction for their artistic programming this season with a theory of embracing the storm rather than sheltering from it; celebrating the intense dynamic it brings, and much like the music - finding beauty in its powerful and unknown plan.

The 30 members of Zydeco Colorguard will be performing their 2009 production at the Dayton and Indianapolis Power Regionals, as well as the WGI World Championships in April.

Byron Valentine - Colorguard Director & Program Design

Joe Sowders - Program Design & Staging

Michael Townsend - Program Design & Choreography

Jennifer House - Program Consultation & Movement Choreography

Kelly Stephens - Program Consultation & Movement Choreography

Amanda Gutheil - Assistant Director/Administration

Lynsey Tyson - Assistant Director/Treasurer

Jessi Yantis - Assistant Director/Member Services

Tommy Allen - Choreography

Sheldon Apo - Choreography

Matt Miller - Choreography

Clint Fisher - Technician

Laura Gasper - Technician

Eric Jones - Technician

Robin Wells - Technicia


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I'm proud to have been a part of the Golden Sabers because it was the best year of my life! Only, I don't know what year that was. I know, who could forget the best year of their life? Me, I'm terrible with dates. I was told it was 1983 & I hope you can either confirm that or correct it for me. We dressed up as clowns & our 1st song was circus themed, our 2nd was Abracadabra, & our last was Out Here on my Own (from the tv show Fame). I got chills EVERY time!! I was the flag…See More
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