What Goes Up?

Props and color guard add to band’s halftime

Lahari Ramini, Staff Writer

They scream school spirit. They also kick off pep rallies, halftime shows, and parades. They fill the atmosphere with music and excitement. But ultimately, they march.

Last year, the varsity marching band swept the floor with their show ‘Mandala’ and won State. Now the stakes are higher than before. This year, they will be performing a show titled ‘What Goes Up?’.

“The idea is that we are going to play with a lot of levels on the field,” Assistant Band Director Craig  Mathis said.

‘What Goes Up?’ includes three completely original pieces of music that were composed by an outside composer and written for the MN band specifically. The first movement is an introduction where marchers are featured on the ground. During the second third movement, they have a change in levels while playing their instruments, making ‘What Goes Up?’. It will be featuring plenty of new equipment for the band, such as ramps, ladders, kites, and giant pennants.

“The fact that we have props makes it really exciting for everyone, we get to climb ladders and we get to march up the ramps and sometimes even dance,” senior trombone player Nithya Mudgapalli said. “The musical aspect is definitely different from ‘Mandala’. Not only is the music harder, but there is the body movement and the aspect of marching.”

The color guard will also be crucial to this year’s show. The guard is comprised of 42 members, the largest number they’ve had in years.

“The color guard is exceptionally important this year. This is also our first year with our new band uniforms. They are primarily black,” Mathis said. “That was done to give color guard a more obvious color palette that they can go with because they are featured a lot more this year.”

The marching band puts a great deal of effort into their shows. For drum majors, being a part of it means putting in even more commitment. They are the students who conduct the whole show. Unlike previous years, this is also the first year the band has chosen four brand new drum majors.

“There will be a lot work for us to do. Not only will the band be moving a lot, but the color guard will be throwing various objects into the sky from the ground,” senior and drum major Rena Li said.

Competition season has yet to begin, but the marchers are pouring their hearts into making this year a success. The band has many goals this year.

“Competing against other bands is out of our hands sometimes. It’s a very subjective activity, but our big push is that we need to be better than we were yesterday. If we’re doing that, we’re taking care of ourselves. The rest will kind of just fall into line,” Mathis said.

Band members not only practice for competitions, but they also prepare for the football games. They practice day and night, and they have become like family.

“Marching band gives different people the opportunity to meet each other. Different

communities, different sides of the spectrum. It kind of gets rid of the jocks and the geeks,” freshman Pranay Mathur said. “We’re all just Marchers.”