“Ok. Good job everybody! Now let’s go through the entire song!” My section leader announced. Angela and I looked at the top of the music. As we fingered through it, I got myself motivated. This was a difficult piece to play, but I was able to get through it. When we play this over again, I should be able to play it really well. “Alright. 8 for free! 5, 6. 5, 6, 7, 8.” I focused on the piece and played through the song along with the rest of the clarinets. “That was great! Now. Turn your stands around. Hopefully you all memorized the piece!”
“What? We’re going to have to memorize this?!” One of the clarinet members asked in disbelief. “Of course! We’re going to be playing this on the field!” My section leader answered. I felt distraught. This music was already difficult enough when playing it on the music. Now we were going to have to memorize it. “Practice makes progress guys. Keep practicing.” She said, and the bell rang for fourth period to be over. When I got home, my only goal was to memorize the music. I practiced for about a half an hour with the music in front of me, and finally, I turned my music face down. I closed my eyes and thought of the way my fingers pressed on each key when I played the song. I played through it, and found out that I was able to consciously memorize the music, by remembering the pattern of my fingers moving. “Yes! I did it!”
“You guys are going to have to think about keeping a straight posture, and also keeping your legs straight and your feet flexed.” Our tech said after he watched our marching technique. “I know there’s a lot to think about. But you’ll get it soon!” I focused hard on keeping my back straight and keeping my head forward as we marched across the field. “Aria! Keep those legs straight!” I was startled at being called out. This was a difficult task, but I needed to focus on keeping everything in order.
“That was great! You guys got it! Remember, marching band is full of multi-tasking. You have to think about a lot of things. But you guys are smart you’ll get it!” The band director smiled. “Tomorrow we are going to work on playing music and marching at the same time!” “Oh man.” My friends whispered. “Tomorrow is gonna be a difficult day.” We all sighed. “I agree.” I said, looking down at the ground.
“Hey you guys are doing great! There are multiple little things that you guys have to focus on, and I know it’s going to be difficult. But it’s not impossible!” The tech said, encouragingly. I knew all the things I had to work on, and I just needed to really know how to apply all of them in performances. Marching band was something that could really stimulate your brain, and make you realize you have a lot of potential. What just started out to be playing single notes on the clarinet softly turned out to be sixteenth note runs while marching sideways across the field. Multi-tasking in marching band was a true work of art.