Bearden band students shift focus from ‘festival’ to skill improvement


The Bearden band rehearses Star Wars, which they will play at their upcoming concert.

Madison Tenney, Staff Writer

All through the fall semester, band students practice their marches and formations for the half time performance at football games, but many people don’t realize that the band doesn’t stop playing after the stands are empty for the season.

For the past several years, following football season, band students could find comfort in what band director Mr. Jamie Wilson likes to affectionately call “sit down band”. During this time, students can get to know their instrument better and improve on skills.

From January to March, the Symphonic Band has normally prepared several pieces that would debut at festival  events for high school bands, choirs, and orchestras that allow different schools and students to perform and to be given critiques that will improve their performances.

To motivate students better than three months of the same music, this semester the band will try something new, as they premiere monthly concerts at Bearden. Mr. Wilson hopes these concerts will help students improve skills, stay engaged, and give more variety than previous years.

Mr. Wilson not only thinks this will help the students stay motivated, but that it will also help refine skills by learning new and challenging music pieces every month.

“In the spring, obviously, there’s no marching band, since it’s too cold to do that, so we do what we call indoor band,” Wilson said. “We kind of affectionately call it sit down band, which is kind of a joking term that we use, but the children kind of know what that means; that we sit down and that’s really where the bulk of the band program is, where we build up the strength of our band sitting down and learning to play an instrument really, really well.”

Senior Shelby Cook is looking forward to learning new and even advanced pieces this semester.

“It’s really, really overwhelming, but it’s really fun because we have hard pieces, and it just makes us better,” Cook said. “Everyone’s focused instead of having a concert every two or three months, and it’s just really exciting and I’m glad we get a chance to do more music.”

This month’s concert will have the theme “Around The World” featuring music pieces from cultures all around the world. The Bearden band hopes to see many students at the concert near the end of this month.