Save the Last Note


Eliana Fulton

On the vast field of the echoing Alamo Dome, the marching band drew their season to a close. The band left on Sunday afternoon for a three day trip to San Antonio where they competed in the UIL State Marching Contest.
After winning second place in the Area competition, the band qualified for state competition.
“I was very excited and a bit in disbelief because I did not originally think we would even make finals, let alone state, but I was super happy with either outcome because it was an experience in itself,” freshman Sydney Carter said.
This accomplishment marked a major milestone in the 2022 season.
“We put so much work into our show everyday and it’s really rewarding to place so high and get to go to state,” sophomore Shay Gifford said.
After a rainy send off on Sunday November 6th, the band departed to San Antonio. On Monday they competed against forty other qualifying bands, and were awarded 25th place.
“The members had their best performance of the season at the state marching contest,” said Assistant band director Mr. Nakamura.
Like many activities, band can be seen as culture more than a sport or a performance art form. The friendships made during emotional weekends such as this one are not to be underestimated.
“My favorite non-band related part of the trip is how we’re able to spend time together the whole weekend,” Shay said. “Because the bonds and friendships that we make with each other in band are so strong.”
Another element of this band competition was interaction between schools. Students from all over Texas come together for friendly competition in their art form.
“It made me feel happy that people from all over Texas had the privilege to share this wonderful opportunity of uniting as one and feeling a sense of togetherness,” said freshman Sai Balaji. “It is always nice to see and experience other bands cheering each other on.”
The students are glad to share their passion, and meet many diverse people that all share one thing in common: a love for all things music.
“It’s like we’re already best friends because we’re all in band,” Shay said.
However, while this trip was a symbolic moment of the band’s accomplishments, they have been working throughout the season to make it all happen.
“I really had the opportunity to show myself that I had the grit and capability to manage much at once,” Sai said. “I learned to manage my time and I cultivated the habit of working hard.”
Sai isn’t the only student to take something away from her long season. Many band kids find that the long rehearsal and serious competition give them lessons to carry on in their everyday lives.
“Finding ways to stay focused is a good skill,” said senior Kade Cameron. “I’m still learning [the skill of focusing] , but it was no doubt exercised during our performances.”
Directors Mr. Gorring, Mr. Nakamura, and Mr. Savala are constantly seeking to make a positive impact on their students. The directors hope to show the marching band that they can reach high standards, and not let them accept any less.
“I feel like I have made memories that I would cherish for years to come and I feel as if I have lived my life to its fullest while being with my section, who had eventually become my family,” Sai said.
As the students exited the Alamo Dome, and made their way back home, it was time to accept that the 2022 marching band season was at its end.
“This is the most rewarding and fun experience I’ve ever had, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything,” Shay said.