Summer before junior year of high school, I was looking at a lot of standardized tests, essays, a heavier school workload, college applications, and getting a driver's license; my most immediate concern, however, was the soon to begin marching band season. Spring semester of sophomore year I had decided to audition for a leadership position in the band, and I suppose I was the best candidate because I managed to snag Section Leader for my instrument, clarinet. As the final days of July passed by, I anticipated the start of a season where I would be mentoring and teaching my fellow clarinet players the complex art of marching band. A few days before leadership camp I received a letter in the mail from the Head Band Director, Mr. Larry Brown, and immediately I knew things were not going to be what I expected.
Orchestra has always been one of my favorite classes to go to during the day. After choosing to play the cello in middle school, I continued playing the instrument in high school. It was in this class that I had made most of my closest friends, many of whom I still love to this day. I also loved how the rich deep tones that came from playing each note of the cello and how they were able to blend with the rest of the orchestra. I knew from my freshmen year that I wanted to get into the top class, Chamber Orchestra. I thought that I would have done everything in my power to get into the class, however when the time came I could not even bring myself to audition.
When I moved back to Georgia the first time, I was placed into an orchestra class that made me feel like a 30 year-old woman stuck in first grade. I was uncomfortable with the fact that I wasn't being challenged and my love for music was slowly diminishing. It wasn't until I moved back to Virginia that I was put into one of the most highly-recognized high school orchestras in Chesapeake, Grassfield High School. My orchestra director, Mr. Vutsinas, pushed me to new heights of musicality that I did not know I could not
1. Thirty pounds of metal resting on my left shoulder, I marched for hours in the blistering hot sun. The sousaphone was my greatest enemy. In 6th grade I was chosen to play tuba for our middle school band, I didn't like it at first, but it grew on me. Two years later, I had gotten pretty good. I made all state band, won some awards, and was 1st chair. I had no intention in joining the marching band my freshman year.
Ever since middle school I had been trying to snag a seat in this elite ensemble. The requirements were simple enough. However, being a clarinet player, the competition was stiff. Playing twelve memorized scales in less than two minutes, a prepared etude, and a single sight reading piece was all that stood between my goal and myself. I was fairly confident of my current skills and with the aid of a private teacher, I was certain that this would
Not only am I the head drum major of my band, but I’m also the president of concert band, a member of the handbell choir (for three years), and apart of my school’s jazz band (for four years). I take this responsibility very seriously and try my best to aid my band director whenever I can. Besides band, I am a member of the school chorus (for two years), the women’s ensemble (for two years), my school’s chamber choir (for two years), and a community choir (for five years)! Music, ever since middle school, has been the driving force that’s kept me busy in life. While other students were bored in study hall, I always was able to resort to my band room to practice. In my high school career, I have had the honor to attend two (going on three) district band festivals and one (hopefully two) region band festivals. These opportunities have been nerve-wracking, yet extremely informing and exciting. My life as a musician has made me think differently on life and provided insight on
We were this close to being stripped of our "Undefeated" title. The band sat there in the bleachers, stunned as the announcer pulled up the scores and was ready to reveal first place. Blood rushed through my veins and the butterflies in my stomach were more active as ever. After all of our hard work, it would have been a shame if we did not conclude the season with a bang. The announcer raised her microphone and everything seemed to come to a halt.
A field show in marching band is structured like a story. A beginning movement sets a mood and an introduction to your show. Then comes a slow ballad that addresses a turning point in your story. Finally comes the closing movement, your resolution.
I remember walking into the band hall that Monday morning, looking around the room admiring all the tambourines and xylophones displayed in the back of the room. A wide grin shot across my face. As I came to my seat, there was a paper that had my name on it. On the paper it had a little section that said “Please write down the instrument you want to play.” Instantly, I knew what I had wanted to play, the trombone. The reason I picked the trombone is because I remember watching my brother marching on the field, playing his solo so beautifully. I knew from then I knew what I wanted to play. So a
Once high school started, I got way more into band than I had been previously. Because there are so many people at the high school the department is split into two bands, and we have to try out if we want to get into the better one. I wanted to be in the better one because my dad conducts it, so I practiced more than I usually did to have a higher chance. I made it in as last chair alto saxophone in the symphonic band, with all the other saxophones being some of the
I went to every lesson and breezed through my lesson book. I was first chair both years and even sat across from Stephenie as we were both first chair for our respective instruments. I took every available opportunity I had to be able to play it including solo contest. Fifth grade band wasn’t anything super remarkable, however band in sixth grade changed the course of my musical career. It started with the arrival of Mrs.Bell, our new sixth grade band teacher. She was very sweet and always encouraged me to keep playing. Mrs.Bell was the reason I took a solo for Jazz band. I would help out in her office and hang out after school. I had even missed classes to help Mrs.Bell set up for honor band even though I didn’t make it in. I always looked forward to going to lessons. I even began taking extra lessons so I could perform in the middle school talent show. I had decided to play the theme from Rocky on my clarinet. All of my practicing had paid off and I delivered an excellent solo and I was very proud of
Whenever I moved to Boyle County and found that Boyle County High School was my desired school of choice, my parents found themselves continuously urging me to join their band program, specifically marching band. I had previously been in band at my former high school, located in an exceptionally small town, in which a quality music program was not necessarily valued, much less a competitive marching band.
I participate in marching and concert band. As for concert band I have participated in it for 3 years, and i have only been in marching band for half a year.I enjoy being in both ensembles because it gives me a chance to make beautiful music and connect with my fellow band members. Most of the reason I’m even at where I am is because of my bad instructor Mr.Barz.
My past has had lots of good times and has had some down right shitty a.f. times. But it’s in the past, so I’ll try not bringing up those memories. So let’s start in the beginning. It was 6:00am at Hamot hospital in Erie,PA, and all of a suddenly you here a huge “OOOUUUCCCHHH!!!!!!!!!”, then badabing badaboom it was 6:01am and I was born. Apparently when I was born I was very yellow looking. Nothing was wrong with me I was just born yellow. After a couple months I started growing out of it, and eventually turned the color I am now, which after lots of discussion and debates with people it has been determined that I’m almost the inside of an almond color. Anyway, after the hospital I lived with my Mom and my Grandmother at her old house in Erie.
“I want to start a flute choir!” Those words were the start of a new mission for me, an exciting journey to success, even though I hadn’t really thought through the process. When I transitioned to full-time PSEO during my junior year in high school, I had to drop band to make room for more classes in college. I missed the relationship I had with my fellow musicians, playing Disney songs for the elementary school children to inspire them to join band, and simply making music with friends. As a musician, playing solos is wonderful, but being part of a group develops even greater skills, such as adjusting intonation, pitch, and listening. I decided that if I couldn’t be in the band at my high school, I would initiate my own, smaller group.