Band Goes to D.C. Preview

Abby Pendleton

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During the Almond Blossom parade, Ripon High School’s band was noticed and invited to go play in the Parade of Heroes in Washington, D.C. They were chosen as the only school in California to go perform.

“It’s important because we were chosen to represent California in Washington D.C., so it shows that we’re proficient. For me personally, it’s important because we’re performing at the next level and it shows that we’ve improved,” said sophomore Philip Carlson, who plays trombone in the band.

At the most recent school board meeting, it was officially approved for the band to be able to travel this November to go play in this parade.

At the board meeting, a sample schedule was included of all the possible things that the band would be doing during their trip. They will be doing some sightseeing, and it’s a possibility, based on the sample schedule, that they could be going to famous and historic locations such as Ford’s Theater, the Capitol Building, and even the Holocaust Museum.

The band will be performing in the Parade of Heroes, which is an event held every year on the week of Veterans Day. According to www.historicprograms.org, this event is where “outstanding bands, choirs and JROTC cadets from around the country in a special tribute to our Veterans at the WWII, Korean War, and Vietnam War memorials.”  That being said, it is an honor and a privilege for the band to be able to go represent California and Ripon High to go.

The band students have learned a lot about music already, and they still have more to absorb.

“I think that they will realize that music is bigger than themselves, and it’s more important than just making noise out of an instrument. All of the music we play represents something and it all has a story to it and it affects people personally,” said band teacher Mr. Felver.

However, the band has a long journey of improvement to get through until they can reach the skill level they are fully satisfied with.

“I really want to improve being more of a band rather than individual instruments because it’s the whole sound that matters rather than one person playing their part,” said sophomore Haley Meece, who plays the baritone saxophone.

This trip is very important to the band because they feel that they can make a difference using music.

“Teaching high school students to care is the biggest challenge,” said Mr. Felver.  “Since we were asked to go, playing in Washington D.C., that’s kind of a big deal that people noticed us and want us to participate in something.  It is a goal of mine to make music a community and global thing.”