Isaiah Roth signs to play for Southern Illinois University Marching Salukis

Roth, a Chester High School senior, made his commitment to SIU Wednesday April 24 at a signing event at CHS Sharp Cafeteria


Story and photos by Jim Beers

CHESTER, Ill. – Chester High School senior, Isaiah Roth, has decided to continue both his educational and music careers next fall at the collegiate level. He has made commitments to Southern Illinois University at Carbondale to study to study Public Relations with a Minor in Music Business, and he will be performing in the SIU Marching Salukis.



Isaiah Roth (center) is joined at his signing ceremony by family members (left to right) Alisa Roth, Grandmother, Devan Roth, Brother, and Mother, Sarah Roth. Isaiah has made the commitment to attend Southern Illinois University at Carbondale to study Public Relations with a minor in Music Business. He has also signed to perform with the SIU Marching Salukis while at SIUC. Jim Beers Photo


Roth decided months ago to attend SIU-C for his collegiate education and has already committed to SIU, registered, and scheduled other aspects of his official class plan. He also has housing, and arranged other responsibilities relating to beginning his collegiate educational career.


After a bit of debate and researching the possibility of also continuing his musical career at the collegiate level, Isaiah made the not-so-difficult decision to become actively involved in the SIU-C Music Department.



Isaiah Roth poses for a photo following his official signing event at which he committed to perform at SIUC with the Marching Salukis. With Roth is Dr. George Brozak, Marching Saluki Band Director who was on hand for Roth’s event. Jim Beers Photo


Isaiah made his decision after talking to his Chester High School Music Director, Steve Colonel, and several other Chester musicians who have previously performed in various musical groups at SIU-C.


On Wednesday April 24, Mr. Colonel, Chester High School Administrators, including Principal Jeremy Blechle, and Assistant Principal, Robin Barton, and Dr. George Brozak, Southern Illinois University Marching Saluki Band Director, held an official signing event at which Isaiah Roth made the commitment to perform in the SIU Marching Salukis.



Steve Colonel (right), CHS Band and Choral Director, welcomes everyone to the official signing event at which CHS senior music student, Isaiah Roth (center) made his commitment to perform at SIUC in the Marching Salukis. With Roth (left to right) are Alisa Roth, Grandmother, Devan Roth, Brother, and Sarah Roth, Mother. Jim Beers Photo


The event was held at the Chester High School James F. Sharp Cafeteria at 3:30 p.m. Joining Roth for this auspicious occasion were CHS Band Director, Steve Colonel, Isaiah’s Grade School Band Director, Sue Colonel, Dr. Brozak, Principal Blechle, Assistant Principal Robin Barton, along with other Chester High School teachers and staff.


By Isaiah’s side during the signing were his mother, Sarah Roth, Grandmother, Alisa Roth, and Brother Devan Roth.


SIUC Marching Band Director, George Brozak, addresses the crowd at the official signing ceremony Wednesday April 24 at which CHS senior, Isaiah Roth, signed to perform with the Marching Salukis next year when he attends SIU to study Public Relations with a Minor in Music Business. Jim Beers Photo 


Dr. Jim Beers and his wife Vicky Beers both performed in the SIU Marching Salukis while they attended SIU and remain active in the SIU Alumni Band. Jim serves on the Alumni Band Board of Directors. Both Jim and Vicky were on hand to support Isaiah at his signing event and strongly encouraged him to make his decision to continue his musical career at the collegiate level at SIU-C.


Steve Colonel welcomed all in attendance at the event and introduced Isaiah and his family after which he introduced Dr. George Brozak, SIU Music Department Professor and Director of the Marching Salukis.



The electric sign at the CHS James F. Sharp Cafeteria at Chester High School announces the time and date of the signing event at which Isaiah Roth, a CHS senior, makes his commitment to perform in the Southern Illinois University MARCHING SALUKIS. Jim Beers Photo 


Brozak gave a nice, thorough historical perspective of his professional career, and welcomed Isaiah to the Saluki Marching Saluki Family. 


Of particular interest to Isaiah and his family was the fact that Marching Saluki members receive a stipend to perform in the Marching Salukis. Those members who also wish to perform in the Saluki Pep Band earn a financial stipend.



Isaiah Roth (center) poses at the signing table with his Grandmother, Alisa Roth, Brother, Devan Roth and Mother, Sarah Roth. Standing with Roth are Dr. George Brozak, SIU Marching Saluki Band Director (left), and Steve Colonel, CHS Band and Choral Director and Sue Colonel, CGS Band and General Music Director. Isaiah had just signed his agreement to perform as a Marching Saluki next year at SIUC. Jim Beers Photo 


Other benefits of performing in the marching and pep bands include free T-shirts, shorts and other apparel throughout the season.


A very generous alumni benefactor has recently donated funds to relocate the Marching Saluki Practice Field from Lot C by the football field and track location to the grassy area near the Brush Towers Housing area.



On Wednesday April 24 Chester High School senior Isaiah Roth (center) signed a letter of intent to perform at Southern Illinois University next year when he attends SIUC to study  Public Relations with a minor in Music Business. He also committed to perform in the Marching Salukis. At the signing ceremony to support and praise Roth were Dr. Jim Beers (left) and Vicky Beers (right). Both Jim and Vicky are former Marching Salukis and helped to strongly encourage Isaiah to consider performing at the collegiate level by joining  the Marching Salukis.   Steve Colonel Photo 


This first year move makes it much closer to the SIU Band Offices and rehearsal rooms at the SIU Music Building, Altgeld Hall, on campus. The new location also offers better parking, lights, and a brand new state-of-the-art director’s tower.


Another advantage is that all students have new musical instruments to use along with protective instrument cases. These amenities were made via a very supportive SIU Administrator a few years ago which is a further drawing card for prospective marching band and pep band members.



Isaiah Roth had a great number of friends on hand to demonstrate support for him Wednesday April 24 when he signed a letter of intent to perform in the Marching Salukis next year at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Jim Beers Photo


Dr. Brozak also mentioned that the band also has modern marching band uniforms that were likewise made possible several years ago. The Marching Salukis are introduced at performances as “The Best Dressed Band in All the Land”!


Isaiah’s family joined him at the signing table along with Dr. Brozak and Steve Colonel. Following the signing, Dr. Brozak presented Isaiah with an official Marching Saluki polo and SIU cap to “seal the deal” and make Isaiah’s membership official.


Isaiah will also receive official college credit for marching with the band and that credit counts towards his graduation requirements.


Isaiah said, “I am excited to get to play in the Marching Salukis. My major at SIUC will be Public Relations, but I plan to get a Minor in Music Business, so I will spend time around the SIU Music Department.”


“Even though lots of other former Chester High School students have played in various SIU bands and ensembles, I am honored to be the first to have an official signing ceremony. I am very thankful to everyone that helped make this possible and to Dr. Brozak for taking time out from his busy schedule to attend this event!”


At Chester High School Isaiah has been very active since 5th grade in the District 139 Music Department. He was a key member of Mrs. Colonel’s Chester Grade School programs and has been very active in Mr. Colonel’s Chester High School programs. He also plays in the Chester Municipal Band in the summer months.


At CHS he has been a leader in most all music-related programs including Marching YellowJackets, CHS Concert Band, CHS Jazz Band, Concert Choir, CHS Swing Choir “Sound Affect”, and the CHS Theatre Program. Isaiah was the Drum Major for the Marching YellowJackets the last two years.


Other activities in which he has been involved include National Honor Society (Summit Chapter), Spanish Club, Student Council, Randolph County Start Up Program, Scholar Bowl Team (Captain), and the “Hive” Pep Club. Sports teams in which he participated are Track and Field, Golf, and Basketball.


School honors and awards include Elks Student of the Month, Drum Major for marching band, Honor Roll, and High Honor Roll.


Community involvements include working with the City of Chester in the summer months, working with the CHS Red Cross Blood Drives, and performing in the Chester Municipal Band.


Besides being an excellent student at Chester High School, Isaiah has further excelled at the college level having already taken Southwestern Illinois College (SWIC) classes in Music Appreciation, American Popular Music, and World Popular Music.


Chester High School Band and Choral Director, Steve Colonel said, “It is very exciting to see someone continuing his musical activities (Isaiah) get a chance to have a signing ceremony!”


“Hopefully more students will take advantage of an opportunity like this in the future. I expect that Isaiah will continue to grow musically while attending SIUC.”


Dr. George Brozak, SIUC Marching Salukis Band Director said, “We are really excited to have Isaiah coming to SIU to play in the Marching Salukis. I think he will do great and fit in well.”


“Chester has several other good musicians that will hopefully join Isaiah and consider coming to SIU and become a Marching Saluki.  We welcome all students, whether they are music majors or not.”


“In fact, a majority of our marching band students are not music majors. They come from other local high schools and just want to continue playing in band at the college level. We look forward to having Isaiah and other Chester students with us in the future!”