The student news site of Arvada West High School

The Westwind

The student news site of Arvada West High School

The Westwind

The student news site of Arvada West High School

The Westwind

Arvada West Marching Band makes it to State

Photo contributed by Laura Wiarda

This year the Arvada West marching band made it to state, with the help of new marching band director Laura Wiarda. This is Wiarda’s first year at Arvada West, and she has already made a big impact through getting marching band to state. 

Karl Niessner, who plays the snare drum and is a section leader, talks about how inclusive marching band is. He states, “I joined Marching band because I wanted to have fun; and because marching band teaches very essential skills. Communication, teamwork, self-sufficiency, and leadership are all skills one learns through marching band.”

Marching band shows how it’s an inclusive community to others; It makes students have fun and want to participate. Enjoying the time that they have together and bonding, making great memories! Blake Borenstein, who plays alto saxophone and is in his first year in marching band, states “I’ve always been interested in music programs and I thought it would be a fun activity to get out and moving.” Even though Borenstein is a freshman, he was able to make it into marching band and was provided with the skills he needed to excel. 

Due to Wiarda being new to the school, she was nervous about making it to state while at the same time hoping she could prove to the students and everyone else that she was good enough. Stressing about the performance, she explains, “It’s like you have to be the designer, you know we have to figure out the drill and how it fits with our music. And where we can add any visuals we do with our body to make it more exciting. We had to figure out props. Props were like the worst part because doing them last minute. Figuring out if they will work and figuring out if they will blow away. And all of that is so much time.”

The marching band has put in a lot of effort to get the designs right, because it takes time to get stuff just right, and can’t be made within seconds. The same goes with the props, Wiarda stated, “getting ideas about props in my head. And if I could have all of those made and figured out before band camp even starts. Then that would really, really get us ahead.”

Marching band has also practiced very hard; Wiarda states, “We started band camp in mid-end of July. And that was for three straight weeks. Probably like pretty 8-4’s. And you know whole days. And then after school, we rehearse from 3:45 to 6:30, four days a week.”

(Photo and quote contributed by Laura Wiarda)

With all the practice marching band put in, they did well in regionals as well as in state. Niessner shares, “Regionals went very well! Everything was at the right place at the right time.” Marching band spends so much time practicing not only for regionals but for state, due to them working so hard they passed and proceeded to state!”

Niessner goes on to talk about how the conditions at State were bad, specifically how it was cold and windy, which made it difficult to perform.  Niessner said, “Somewhat, because of the harsh conditions of the state.” This affected some of the marching band students such as Borenstein, and many others, including the marching band director Wiarda. She hoped that the weather would’ve been better than it was. 

Wiarda also talked about how she wishes they had more time in between regionals and state to practice more on their show. Looking forward, she hopes that next year they can improve on what they need to. And while they didn’t make it to the semi-finals, marching band still did an excellent job and performed well.

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About the Contributor
Aly Nichols
Aly Nichols, Reporter
Alayna "Aly" Nichols is a freshman and this is her first year on staff. She enjoys theater, writing, and drawing. She is excited and looking forward to writing for her first year at the Westwind and interviewing others.

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