Marching Band’s Dedication Pays Off with Win

Marching Band’s Dedication Pays Off with Win

Written by Ashleigh Moffett , Logan Johnson , and Ryan Wright

From dark, foggy mornings to late scorching summer evenings, marching band knows all too well of what hard work and persistence means. Band camp, in late summer, is ten hours for two weeks straight. Practice during the school year can be up to three hours or more, including body warm ups, marching practice, and instrument work.              

Dedication is a keyword in the band program at Woodgrove. Practice is nearly every day, including at-home rehearsal on the instruments themselves.   

Many find a passion for band and stay involved with it for all their lives, such as Mr. William Strickler, the Woodgrove band director, who has been working in the band environment since the 7th grade as a trumpet player. Strickler said, “Everyone is very invested,” they go out and give every performance and practice their all.  

Thomas Acquino, one of the marching band instructors at Woodgrove, emphasized how there can be no walk ons in
marching band.   

Practice is required. It’s physically challenging to have to march and control the breathing going into an instrument simultaneously. It takes great conditioning. That is why it’s so imperative to practice until the performance is made perfect.

The band students have to know the routine as if it were the back of their hand. Memorization also plays a huge role in the performances.  

As Aquino said, “You practice eight million minutes to play for eight minutes.”  

The hardwork is paying off. The band recently traveled to Richmond to compete in the tournament of champions, winning first place trophies in Music, Visual Effect, Percussion, Color Guard, and General Effect.    

The band has several upcoming events. On October 26, the band will be performing at the VBODA (Virginia Band and Orchestra Directors Association) state assessment, and on November 2, they travel  to the Virginia Marching Band State Championships in Lynchburg.