Tiger band ends on a good note

Sophomore+Hoshski+Reyes+participates+in+the+band+competition.

Photo by Carlie Clem

Sophomore Hoshski Reyes participates in the band competition.

Story by Bradley Lenaway, Staff Writer

From the scorching heat of the summer to the crisp air during the final football performance, the Tiger Marching Band has spent the majority of the first semester not only perfecting the fundamentals of marching, but their contests as well.

During the contest season, they transcended many ebs of lows and highs.

At Standridge Stadium in Carrollton, the band takes the field under a burning sun. The turf burns, smelling of rubber and heat which radiates off the field and through the thin soles of their shoes.

The show passes as a blur, moving through the motions and only recalling the sweet taste of cool water afterward. An upsetting upheaval of a premature start due to miscommunication ring prominently with the members. Three hours later, after watching the spectacular shows of the other bands, the Tiger band walks away from the competition with a disappointing placement of last.

This was a hard hit to the members, but even in the midsts of these results, the leaders hold strong to their optimism.

“It was hot,” junior Selwin George said. “Fatigue was our greatest adversary in this performance. However, I still firmly believe that the performance we gave was good.”

In spite of this disappointing result after much hard work, this was still the first contest of the year for the band.

***

At Sam Parker Football Stadium on the grounds of Mt. Pleasant High School, the weight of the world laid heavy on the band as they pull into the parking lot.

The band enters the field under the intimidating glares of the judges. The air is cool and the conditions are perfect. The drum major salutes and turns to the band, locking eyes with battery percussion. She nods in approval and begins the count off. The show passes again with a blur, just like Carrollton, unlike last time, morale is high.

Coming off the field, the members silently celebrate and move into the stands of the stadium to watch the last two bands, awaiting anxiously for the results.

“Today was the best it has ever been,” senior drum major Madison Norton said. “I am so proud of the Tiger Band. Tears came to my eyes as the last notes echoed off the field.”

Finally, the moment of truth: results. After waiting for 30 minutes, the words that all the members were waiting for echoed out and across the field, “One.”

The band, at the east end of the stands, rose and yelled in excitement, letting the chorus of victory echo far and wide. The one thing that had seemed so inevitable has finally come true, the band is going to Area and a feeling of triumph spreads quickly.

“When I was on the stand,” George said. “I wasn’t sure on how we were going to do. Our playing and marching was beyond what it normally was. I thought we had a very good performance, but there are incredibly good bands at Area.”

***

The three hour drive to Memorial Stadium in Mesquite was long, but with the comfort of charter busses, the distance was covered timely. Hope is what clings to the souls of the leaders and members. With state a possibility, and 25 other bands competing for the same five spots to advance to state, the only wish is to do the best as humanly possible.

“I hope we just be the best we can be,”  Norton said. “We have had a challenging year, and now its time to shine and show off.”

The band enters the field to a whirlwind of announcements. The same preshow rituals are performed, a short warm-up and salute. The show moves fluidly, with mixed emotions. The band exits the field with much indifference about the show.

They leave to pack up and wait the long duration for results. Bands of many sizes perform afterwards, each with an array of themes and music. Finally after three long hours, results are broadcasted over the hushed crowd. Out of 25 bands, Texas High placed 18th and did not advance to finals or state.

Although saddened about not advancing, the band members felt happy about their placement, especially the seniors.

“I was visibly upset and beside myself. I was upset not for how we did, but because it was my last official marching contest with my band family,” senior Miles Coleman said. “I’m proud to say I’ve been apart of this band, and I wouldn’t take back a single moment.”