Perry Band Olympics. This phrase both excites and terrifies every band student in Ankeny. Every year, our directors selects different songs for their students, and the students spend around six weeks practicing. My junior year solo was the hardest solo I’ve prepared, it challenged me in ways that I had not been prepared for. The song was divided into three movements, with little breaks or rest time in between.
Taking the field the Evolution “East Peoria Marching Raiders, you may take the field in competition.” During the four years of high school, I was able to get involved with the East Peoria High School Band program. The marching band has evolved since I joined in 2011 and it has been improving each year. My freshman year we used to march trombones, I was probably the worst one on the field when it came to the marching aspect. There was a lot of foundation work being planted as I learned the terms, how to read drill, remembering counts, memorizing music, managing homework on long Tuesday night rehearsals and most importantly how to enjoy oneself in the midst of a struggle. This was just the first year!
I remember the second half of my eighth grade year when I made second alternative for All-State band. I was semi pleased with my results, but I knew I could achieve better. I told Mr.C antrell (my high school band director) and Mr. Lonberger (my middle school band director) in the High School band room that I was going to make All-State Band my Freshman year of high school. That summer I spent a lot of time praying in my room asking God to help me make it. Although I was not playing my Baritone during the summer (because I did not have a personal one) I still did exercises to help my skills.
“One, two, three, four! One, two and three and four!” I was frantically counting in my mind. It was my first pit orchestra practice for the high school musical my freshman year. No matter how hard I tried, I just could not keep up with the fast tempo and puzzling key signatures in the music for Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. The opening performance was in one week and I had a long way to go to perfect the music in time.
I also don’t like the Bengals or Basketball. I also get to be a dancer in our church 's Christmas program. A couple of weeks ago I got to go to Springfield with my church and it was a Ohio State Youth Convention for christians to gather. This summer I am going to San Antonio Texas with my church for another youth convention. I am very excited to go but am worried about the plane crashing.
Transitioning from middle school band to high school band was a major jump because of all the time involved, but it was such a great transition. Since my freshman year I have always done all I can to be my absolute best in this program. I never slacked off on practice unless I had another event I had to attend. Every summer we have band camp that consists of 8 hours a day working our hardest to get the season started. Once school starts the color guard had three hour practices three times a week, last year it was only two, and now we only have practice one day a week because of the effort we all put in at band camp this year.
Have you ever went on a trip to Chamberlain? Well if you have you, probably didn’t go for the reason I did. Last year near the middle/end of the year I went on my first choir trip to Chamberlain to sing at the school. I went with two of my teachers and peers in my choir class. About a week and a half in advance we got told we were going to Chamberlain to sing.
I had watched patiently as older members of my high school moved on to UGA and were indoctrinated into the finest band in the land. In order to try and achieve this goal I worked tirelessly in High School making the grades to ensure my acceptance to the University. As a French Horn player I was taught to focus and work hard until you achieved your goal, whether this is in band, biology or college acceptances. I used this
The Audition I remember the exact day when I made the Rummel/Chapelle Band. I was feeling so nervous for my audition because I did not know if I was going to make the band. One reason why I tried out for the band was because my sister was in the band for four years and I wanted to follow in her footsteps. Also, I tried out because I love playing the baritone and I have been in band since I was in fourth grade. When I first walked into the band room I got so nervous, because I was hearing other people warming up and I was afraid I was not going to make the band.
I have marched with the Pride of the Hill band since my Freshman year, and experienced some marching in eighth grade, and it isn’t as easy as it seems. I remember watching my siblings march when they were in high school and I was still in primary and intermediate, and I used to think that it looked easy and that it wasn’t really a sport or anything. But after experiencing it myself I realized the amount of work you put into it, the teamwork needed to accomplish things, and the competitions where you hope that all of the hard work, from band camp in the summer, the early morning practices during the week, and the Thursday night rehearsals during the
I grew up with panic disorder, which at points was so crippling I would be unable to leave my house for days on end. In order to cope, I began to immerse myself in practicing music, which was made widely available to me by the band program at my high school. I joined every ensemble I could- marching band, jazz band, theatre ensembles- and the more I played, the less time I had to think about all the things that scared me. The availability of my directors and their passion for music ultimately aided in my ability to overcome the disorder that was slowly destroying me, and I hope to one day be able to do as they did for someone in the future. Within my family, my mother has always been a role model for my sister and I.
I was always on the honor role in elementary, but with the sudden incline in homework and classes I fell off the horse and started to get worse and worse grades, but this year I want to do everything asked of me from my teachers and my family. I am going to work hard this year and I want to get at least a 6 - 7 as my overall grade in all of my core classes. In my electives even in elementary I was always good at them because they’re more interactive. I was playing viola scene last year and I am getting used to it. I know how to play one Ludwig van Beethoven song (Ode to Joy), and I know how to play one song by the Surfaris (wipeout).
I’m so excited for what my high school choir experience could bring me. All I have ever thought about high school choir and what it’s like has been shattered in five minutes. It’s a large step up from the simple middle-school songs we always sing. Though those are fun times it doesn’t compare to the joy of singing with skilled, experienced people. It’s a big step up and though it will take hard work I’m excited to see what my future holds with this
Majoring in music has been my dream since my freshman year of high school. Near the end of my junior year, I discovered that I wanted to be a choir director. Being in theatre has helped me figure out my calling in life, and I wouldn’t trade the past ten years of my life that I’ve spent at the theatre. Theatre has encouraged me to push myself out of my comfort zone, and without it I never would have been able to sing as confidently as I can today. The first plays I was ever in were musicals, and that’s how I found my love for singing.