Marching band is bigger than the football team

The marching band parades down Washington street for the Memorial Day parade.

The marching band parades down Washington street for the Memorial Day parade.

The marching band parades down Washington street for the Memorial Day parade.

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The marching band is for the football team, a group of freshman say as I pass them in the hallway.
To the average high schooler, yes marching band is for the football team because you don’t see them any other time. But that’s simply not the case.
Marching band season spans from May to mid- Oct. While students normally only see the band during the halftime show, also known as their bathroom break, the marching band competes with other bands through the rest of the season.
The marching band has three hour rehearsal blocks during the end of the school year, but during the summer, rehearsals can range from three to five hours. Once the school year starts, they rehearse during first hour and after school on Tuesdays.
Each rehearsal looks a little like this; students moving in strict, rigid motions, in sync with one another. Eyes staring straight ahead. Novoselich beating on a wooden block. Clock Clock Clock, each kid moves their right foot, marching forward. Precision is key.
Then there is band camp; a five day sweat fest. Everyday is almost non-stop rehearsal with the same clock clock clock to perfect their performance.
Band director Iain Novoselich acknowledges how much work is going into the marching and music.
“We have to get the what it is to march along with the performance side of music, then trying to meld them into one piece of art,” Novoselich said.
All of this work is to compete with other marching bands in the district.
They compete against various high schools in the district on consistency, musical performance, and technique. The band has received high scores the last few years, and continues to get recognition outside of football. Megan McCarthy, a 2018 drum major, is proud of this.
“There are all these accomplishments that the band has,” McCarthy said. “We do so much more than play for the football team. We have so many awards that people don’t even realize.”
Junior Sydney Ratter, also a drum major, realizes most people don’t see the effort that goes into marching band.
“Marching band is much harder than it looks, there is so much more than what people see in the show,” Ratter said. “We spend more time practicing, more time together, and everybody has something to improve on.
Another underappreciated part of marching band the color guard. Colorguard is the visual component to the music. This is a combination of dancing and flag waving.
“Colorguard is a very tight knit group of individuals,” junior Veronica Parise said. “Anybody is welcome.”
Colorguard spends 3 to 6 hours practicing on top of 2 hours with the band to get it perfect. They have to twirl a flag while listening and keeping in time with the music. All of this work goes overlooked by the students.
“Try waving a huge metal flag around when it is 70 mph wind, and you are marching, and have to stay on time and step and get your flag where it needs to be,” Veronica Parise said.
While many students acknowledge the marching band, they normally don’t understand the whole thing. They have to wear their band uniforms even on the hot days, and wave flags around constantly.
Marching band is a difficult and long process, but all the work is worth it for them to put on a good performance.
“We just ask for everyones support to have a good time,” Novoselich said. “Come to games, come along and sing along. Have a good time and be apart of the excitement.”

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Marching band is bigger than the football team