Returning to the stage: Band has more playing opportunities due to Covid-19 restrictions being lifted

Jeneva Craig, RayPec Now Co-Editor

Band has been affected this past year by the Covid-19 pandemic, but this new year has brought the ensemble together again and they are ready to get back into performing beautiful music. Their first concert was on October 4, 2021 and each band showcased their skill through multiple songs.

The band classes have been preparing for the concert since the beginning of the school year. There are three different musical groups in the band program; Concert Band, Symphonic Band, and Wind Symphony. Each group practices together during their class and works to improve their tone, dynamics, and blend from each section. Director of Bands Jennifer Gibson explains how each class was able to be ready to perform.

“Every day the students of each ensemble have been working as a team to make sure the music sounds the way the composer intended. They are making sure the balance and blend is correct and all the elements of music are put together in the right way,” said Gibson.

The students are looking forward to being able to practice with all of their classmates again. Each band member had to deal with the struggles of the last school year and now with the full band united they are able to become a better ensemble. Senior Savannah Schreihofer describes why she continued band this year.

“I really wanted to stay in band because I wanted to show my younger classmates that it can still be fun even though it was how it was last year. Because it was fun in the previous years and I think it can get like that again. I just want to show that it’s fun,” Schreihofer said.

Senior Ella Oldham and Sophomore Hayden Scammacca perform in the Fall concert. (Audrey Mitchell).

While working through the pieces of music, each section has to listen and blend with each other. Learning these skills takes time, and over the course of the year the students become better musicians. Sophomore Audrey Collins talks through the importance of coming together as a group.

“When everyone comes together, the piece comes together and the details in the piece come out with everyone playing,” Collins said.

Even though the bands haven’t been together long, the students are able to make great improvements from last year. Schreihofer describes how she has made personal corrections leading up to the concert.

“I think that working towards a concert helps me set a goal for myself, so that I know when I need to sound good, so that I can prepare myself, you know. I can practice at home and with my classmates and really listen to everybody and make sure everybody else is sounding good and that I’m sounding good,” Schreihofer said.

Concerts give students the opportunity to showcase their abilities and the music they have been working on. Parents, grandparents, and siblings of the students come out to show their support for their musician. Collins talks about who came to watch her performance.

“My parents came to see me. My family loves to watch me play,” Collins said.

Working towards this concert has helped people individually and the band as a whole. Schreihofer explains how the band continues to improve.

“We can listen together and get better as a whole band instead of having two days to be with half the band, but what we did last did help with individuals, so in a way it did still sound better, but I think we’re improving because we’re listening to other people and we are relearning to listen to each section individually,”

The band department hopes for a year of success with complex and creative pieces of music. As the year goes on, Gibson plans on working towards bettering her students and getting the band back to normal.

“It’s helped to build morale and normalcy again. Students are able to really make music and be a family again. I am looking forward to playing as much music and performing as much as possible,” Gibson said.

The band is a group of students who come together with their sound. The concert was able to display the student’s exemplary artistry, which was visible even after a year of being split. The band department as a whole is continuing to work towards being a better group overall throughout the school year, and becoming the best musicians they can be.