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Los Banos High School Marching Band Places High in the First Competition of the Season!

Isabella Montez, Nyeli Rubio, and Ms. Cavazos pose with the band's awards.

Faith Zako, Staff Reporter

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On September 29, 2018, at 6:45 a.m., the LBHS marching and students met at the band room to get ready to board the bus to their competition in Turlock.

The marching band competitions are generally conducted in the following manner: after arriving at the venue, the students change into their uniforms and put their instruments together. After warming up, they get into block formation and go through one or two warm-up zones and a silent zone before they get to the actual parade competition start line. The drum major, Isabella Monetz, (12) does their baton routine and signals the drum line with a series of tweets to begin the roll-off. As the students are marching, they pass a panel of judges on the right hand side.

The marching band has a unique start to their performance. Montez calls the band to attention and then to a parade rest. The parade rest is done as the following: feet spread shoulder width apart, left hand at the small of their back, and head bowed. This must be done in one count.

Montez then blows her whistle in one long tweet followed by four short ones. On each of the short one, minus the first, the band snaps their head up in a ripple effect. After the tweets, the drum line begins their roll off and the band takes off.

This was the first competition of the season for the LBHS marching band. Many were nervous since the band was unable to conduct their regular practice the Wednesday prior to the event.   Despite this, the band had a good run.

Sergio Hernandez (11), the only piccolo player, voiced, “The parade was really fun. Me personally-I don’t think I did that well, but it’s the first competition, what do you expect? But I know we’ll do great in other competitions.” 

Some were optimistic about the competition, while others thought they could have done better.

Fernando Castillo (12), the drill captain said, “I feel like it could have been better if we went over more of the specifics rather than generalizing what we had to do, but I think it’s good for the given circumstances and how few efficient practices we’ve had.”

Similarly, Nyeli Rubio (12), the drum line captain said, “I actually thought the parade went really well. I would say some of our lines were pretty shaky but I think we did pretty well. I don’t think we did the greatest but I don’t think we’ll place last.”

Amanda Baltazar (11), a clarinet player and the music librarian said, “I think the parade went pretty well. There’s always room for improvement. I’m obviously going to hope we get first. Dressing could’ve been better, but other than that, the music sounded pretty good.”

Before the awards ceremony, the competing bands had fun chanting cheers for their band and dancing to music on the stage. When the awards began, everyone sat on the grass and quieted down in anticipation.

Kiera Junior (12), the Clarinet section leader, optimistically claimed, “I think that we did pretty good. I think we did an awesome run for having a quick last minute schedule change and one warm-up!”

Out of all the competing military drum majors, the LBHS band drum major, Isabella Montez, got an incredible third place! Out of all the competing color guards, the LBHS Color Guard placed sixth, or first in their division! And out of the bands competing in the B division, the LBHS band placed first! Congratulations!

The band director Ms. Danielle Cavazos said, “We definitely did good, but we could do a whole lot better.”

This seems to be the general consensus among the band. It’s safe to say that we can look forward to a successful season.

Pre-first competition ritual!
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Los Banos High School Marching Band Places High in the First Competition of the Season!