In May of 2022, the Mon Valley Academy for the Arts Board of Directors developed a new group of student musicians. Building on the exciting six-year history of the MVAA programming, the MVAA Reg’t Fife and Drum unit has started marching. In line with the student-designated programs and recent historical opportunities, the 13-piece, “Ancient Drum and Fife” unit performed its debut event on May 7 at the Mounds Fest event at Crall Mounds Park in Monongahela, Pennsylvania.

Led by Mr. Chuck Suba, Annette Buffer, and the MVAA board of directors, the students in grades 7 through 12 were recruited, auditioned, and rehearsed in the fashion of a Civil War Fife and Drum unit. Students from the entire Mon Valley area have been practicing and drilling in the fashion of the 1860s musical style. Along with period instruments and authentic style union uniforms, the unit has 15 events this year. Starting on May 7 in Monongahela leading up to a Canon Display in Belle Vernon and finally performing at the Gettysburg Battlefield, the MVAA Reg’l unit’s members are excited about portraying a very unique style of music and educational history.

Members: Peyton Deferrari, Quartermaster. Fifes: Will Simms, Sarah Fox, Jenna Fox, Levi Barkley, Eli Criswell, Korben Andrews. Drums: Danika Hampton, Mason Quarture, Liam Welsh, Spencer Anderson, Jacob Coffee, and Isaac Rivera.

As the season moves forward, all Mon Valley students, sponsors, and donors are welcome to join and participate. For information and performance schedule: visit the MVAA FaceBook page, call 724-565-1687, or email