While most Highland kids are enjoying their summer leisurely, band students are already hard at work. Band Camp is an annual 7-day long program for all students involved in band or color guard. To celebrate the feat of Band Camp completion, students hold a concert! We were lucky enough to attend and experience the fruits of these students’ work.
Promptly at 7 PM, band students recited “Take to the Skies” – a melodic composition that can instantly lift your spirits. They followed with other tunes. The Department Chair of Mathematics, Mrs. Santillan, said the performance was great. She noted that the students were very energetic – which says a lot after an exhausting 7-day regime – and unified in their playing. Additionally, Mrs. Santillan told us how she completely got goosebumps nearing the end of the show.
Now, what do the band camp kids have to say about the band experience?
Angela, a rising junior who has been in band since the 4th grade, shared her story with us. She reflects on her time in band– how she has learned a bunch of new things, how she has been able to go on numerous fun field trips, and how exciting the competitions can be. Angela’s best advice for interested students is to just go for it! The new music opportunity is super rewarding and band kids get cool free T-shirts!
Charles is another student who has been involved in band since his early elementary years. Not only does he think band is fun, but he also finds it a safe and healthy way to let go of his anger. He warns that the hardest part of band are the competitions. Charles advises incoming freshmen to wear comfortable clothes, drink plenty of water, and most importantly– have fun!
Raymond, an eleventh grader, was encouraged to join band because his dad inspired him and it was an incredible passion of his. He encourages prospective students to stay dedicated to music and to talk and get to know the teachers!
Marcus, grade 11, says, “band is better than orchestra!” What a blow!
Noah, a 10th grader, also has a deep passion for music. He says to do what you want without letting others ever discourage you. Noah believes the summer Band Camp is definitely the hardest as teachers will push you, but the people you will meet are nice and energetic.
Now… a special feature! Isaiah and Serenity walk us through what band is like for them.
Serenity has always loved marching and doing competitions. She eagerly convinced Isaiah to join band as well. They both agree the environment is fun and welcoming and that neither of them had to forcibly try to “fit in”. However, they also caution that you will have to work hard, stay open-minded, and prepare to practice a lot. Serenity encourages the use of sunscreen, especially in the brutal August of band camp! Isaiah jokingly (or was it jokingly?) comments that the hardest part about band is being in the heat! And while practicing drill and playing music at the same time has proven difficult for them, they do note that this gets easier over time. Playing songs for the pep rally at football games or playing random songs for fun far outweigh the cons of being in band.
What goals does Band have this upcoming year?
The Booster Club President aims to help organize and encourage others to join band. They say that it is most rewarding to see how students join and break out of their shell. Their goal is to raise 10,000 in order to fund all the exciting things band does – and the booster club pays for absolutely everything so students can have a comfortable band journey.
So, what of it?
The energy, excitement, and love for music is distinct in every single student here. They put in a lot of work but still manage to have fun and sound great while doing so.
Band is excited for the future and throughout the camp, students have found a fluency in their music that will make football games enjoyable for all spectators. Please give them a listen!
All band students have an affinity for music – this commonality creates a tight-knit community of students. They get to compete and perform many times throughout the year. One of their signature events is the “Pops Concert” which has been an annual success for a few years. Band students work hard to play hard and this is reflected in the atmosphere at this event. Next time band has an event, come out and see for yourself what these talented students are capable of!