Memoirs Of A Band Nerd: Part Seven
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Memoirs Of A Band Nerd: Part Seven

The seventh installment in my marching band story.

Memoirs Of A Band Nerd: Part Seven
Maya Ferguson

When school ends for students, friends go their separate ways. They must wait until August to see one another again, but band is a family that cannot be separated, not even by summer. In fact, the start of summer meant that we would be seeing even more of each other. The timeless friendship between myself, Maya, Maria, and Abby was still going strong. At this point, we had acquired new friends from the clarinet section- Brooklyn, Aley, and Nicole. These kids were in 8th grade, and we were in 11th, yet we still were able to form an unspeakable bond.

This season's show was Olympus, which featured music inspired by Greek mythology. The titles included Poseidon, Aphrodite, and Zeus. We all loved the music, and felt confident that we would have a great season. We had a new drum major- my friend and neighbor Adam.

Band camp crept up on us as it always does, but we were filled with a new enthusiasm to win after placing third. We worked hard on the music, and the sets and visuals were perfect. For instance, Aphrodite is the goddess of love, and in the song dedicated to her we formed a giant heart on the field. It was our best show thus far, and we were on top of the world.

Soon, school started and so did the Friday night football games. We would perform our show in our stadium, driving the fans crazy and earning standing ovations. However, one Friday night stands out in my mind for a different reason.

On this particular night, we were playing against our rivals- the Chesnee Eagles. It was homecoming, so the band didn't play at halftime so that the queen could be crowned. We would play after the game. We stood in the stands cheering the wildcats on for four quarters, but in the end, we lost. The buzzer sounded, ending the game, and Chesnee fans stormed the football field, right as we were about to march on to perform. We waited for a moment, and they still would not clear. They were asked to move, and they still would not clear. We looked to Dixon for instructions- what were we to do? Suddenly, he called us to attention. Instinctively, I snapped forward and stood in line, stiff as a board. The snare drum rang out line gunshots in the night air four times- this was a signal for us to move. So, we all started marching forward onto the field. The Chesnee fans were in our way, but we did not stop. They yelled at us, cussed at us, tried to get into our faces, and we still would not stop. They tried to break our ranks, but we held them tight. Eventually, they got the idea and got the hell out of the way.

Never in my life have I ever felt so unified to a group of people. In that moment, we proved that we were more than just a bunch of kids with instruments. We proved that we deserved respect. Dixon was proud of us for bravely holding our ground. I felt proud to be a wildcat.

We had a great season, winning first place at all of our competitions leading to the Upper State competition. The show had its finishing touches added- like the musical conch shell our lead trumpet player blew to signal the start of the show and the trident our guard captain performed his solo with. We were destined for greatness.

There was no doubt in our minds that we would make it to State with this show, but we had no idea where we would place.

I always felt that our band had the most soul and most character. We definitely had the youngest band members; Dixon brought in students as young as 7th grade. Most high schools only allowed freshman. Since we had members that were so young, we had to work twice as hard as everyone else to be great. In fact, to do as well as we did is an amazing feat. I know many band directors who would lose their minds trying to teach 12 year-olds how to march and play at the same time.

With that being said, we gave everything we had at that Upper State competition, which was ten times as much as any other band could give. And it paid off.

Don't quote me on this, because my memory isn't what it used to be, and there's a possibility that I could be wrong, but we placed second. Maybe it was the next year that we placed second, but I'm fairly certain that it was this year. Don't grow old, kids. It's a trap. Memory is definitely the first thing to go.

Until next time- Raleigh Kennedy.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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