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Is Central’s Band Underrated?

Jake Gant, Staff Writer

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Being in high school, we see a lot of hype for our sports teams. They are viewed as very competitive and something we should be proud of, which we should be. We constantly hear the Principal mentioning our football team over the intercom on fridays, wishing them the best of luck in their endeavors. Occasionally we hear about our softball team, baseball team, soccer team, and other competitive sports teams.

However, there is one program that rarely sees the limelight on campus, and it’s our band program. Yes, we proudly support our other sports teams, and we take the field for halftime shows for every football game. We are proud to show our talents to our school administration, teachers, and fellow students. Sadly though, a lot of students do not see the Flash of Crimson as the highly successful and efficient program that it is.

One of the big reasons nobody really knows about the band is because a lot of people don’t know that much about the band and how it functions. Let’s dive into how it starts every year. On July 16th, 2018 official band camp began. Every day of band camp (starting off) is nine hours of practicing the fundamentals of music and getting back into the groove of things. The band typically will not practice together for the first few days or the first week because each section has individual needs and needs to figure things out for themselves before the whole group can be together.

By the second week all sections should have a basic idea of how they will function and also know some of our show. The beginning of the show is called the “opener”. Most of summer band camp is focused on figuring that out as a group so that when football season rolls around we are able to play that somewhat well. Once the opener is figured out and memorized, we move on to the “ballad.” Once we start learning and performing the ballad, the entire band moves faster, learns faster, and prepares to compete harder. By the time we are finished with learning our show we typically have around five different movements (sections of the show) that we play.

What a lot of people don’t know is that our band goes to competitions in the fall until around November. That’s right, we compete too! The Flash of Crimson Marching Band was, and still arguably is, one of the most respected high school marching bands in the south. Known for excellence, we have won countless Grand Championships, even at the State level, and our indoor group has even received second place at World Championships.

According to a band student, who wishes to remain anonymous, the band is very underrated. “We are underrated, not really because [other students] don’t know what we do, a lot of the students and teachers don’t respect what we do. I feel like a lot of the time we are put down because others feel we don’t work as hard as football players or soccer players, but in reality we are extremely hard workers.”

It has also been mentioned many times in band and outside of school that the band is called terms that could be considered offensive by not only band students, but other students on campus. “I’ve heard it from football players, cheerleaders, etc. Of course not everyone says this, but a lot of the time people use slang words to talk about us like ‘Oh that’s so gay’.”

Band students are commonly looked down upon by other students, and many band kids agree that it’s because what the school sees is very different than what we see as band students. Many students are unaware that learning an entire nine-minute show can take up to four or five months of extremely hard work and lots of dedication.. There is a lot of processing and changes that need to go on before a show evolves into a true work of art.

We are known for practicing when the sun rises until after the sun sets. We will have long Saturdays away from our families, three to four days of staying after school until 7 just learning music. We are a passionate group, and more importantly we are a team just like any other here at Central. We support our peers, our teachers, our other sports teams, our administrators, and Forsyth Central High School as a whole. Let’s all be bulldogs, let’s all support each other, let’s all show the world what it means to be from Central.

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