“What are you guys trying out for?” “I think Kaitlinh and Angela are trying out for drum majors! I really want to be president.” I answered. As freshmen in the band, we knew there was no way we could compete with the sophomores, juniors, and seniors. But we found out there was a process in trying out for positions in leadership. We decided we wanted to try out this year for the experience, so we would know what to do when we tried out for those positions in the future. When we get older, we would learn from mistakes that we made in the past years.

Undergraduate Library

“Are you the only freshman trying out for president?” Brytney asked. I nodded. A lot of the freshman girls didn’t have the courage to sign up for something. They wanted to wait until after a couple years before they tried out. I on the other hand had wanted to be president ever since the beginning of band camp. I had really looked up to the president in the band, and I admired the responsibilities that they had gotten. But obviously, as a freshman, I wouldn’t be able to make it, but I would be able to gain the experience. Kaitlinh, Angela, and I really wanted to give motivation to the rest of the girls to try out for leadership.

“C’mon! You should try out for a position!” I encouraged Mai-Anh. “I don’t know. What if I mess up during auditions?” Mai-Anh said, worriedly. “You’ve got nothing to lose! We wouldn’t make it freshman year, but we will get the experience!” I replied. Mai-Anh shook her head. I sighed, giving up on the encouragement. She was the only freshman girl who decided not to try out for a position. The others were able to muster enough courage to at least sign up for one position, even if it was a minor one.

“Alright…” Mai-Anh said at last. “I want to try out for president.” “WOO!” Angela shouted. “Dude you would be the best president!” Everyone crowded around Mai-Anh after she announced her decision. I stood in the back, and smiled at her confidence. But a little part of me felt left out. Kaitlinh, Angela, and Brytney were all running for drum major, and we all supported each of them. But right now, it didn’t see like that was the case for the freshmen running for president.

Social Anxiety Support

“Who are you voting for for president?” “Mai-Anh of course!” Angela answered. I gave a thumbs up, and turned around, a bit sad that she had no hesitation for that answer at all. “Wait!” Mai-Anh said. “What about Aria?” “Oh yeah! She’s running for president too!” Angela said. “How about half of us vote for May, and half of us vote for Aria?” “That’s a good idea!” I smiled. I shouldn’t be jealous of the attention towards Mai-Anh. I should feel happy for her. Not one of us are better than the other, and we were friends. We were still freshmen too, so none of us will be getting the position over the other juniors and seniors running for president. We were only doing this for experience. And later on, when we get older, we may be competing with each other, but we would still remain friends. The main purpose of the people in leadership positions is that the leaders can help benefit the large band, and not just themselves. This would allow all of us to create a work of art.



“Aria there is no way you can survive in this band for four years if you don’t have the courage to play in front of a crowd. We’re in a marching band! We perform in front of a live audience every show!” “But this is different! We perform together in those shows! But a solo? I can’t do that!” Marching season was over, and concert season has started. As a freshman, I hadn’t gotten much attention in front of a lot of people. My friends and I were “just one of those freshmen,” but we were ok with it. We got to work together in a huge crowd and we accomplished a huge goal together. That was in marching band, but now in concert season, there are going to be chances where the spotlight might hit one of us.

Spotlight Workshops

I stared at my oboe. In marching season, I had picked up the clarinet, and there were about 18 people in the section. When we played together, we made music and sound together. But oboe was very different. I had decided to play oboe for marching season because we needed more in the band. The section needed another player, and I wanted to step up. Unlike the large section I was used to, the oboe section was consisted of TWO people. The other oboe player was a senior who would be soon graduating, and I would have to take his spot the next year. However, he was a person known for missing band, and whenever he wasn’t around, I would be the only oboe player in the band.

“It’s a solo instrument! What did you expect? The oboe is the instrument that the whole band tunes to. You gotta get used to it! You might’ve messed up today but you’ll get better!” I groaned and sunk underneath my desk. The other oboe player was absent from class, and I was set the task of tuning the band. But because I was so nervous, I could barely play a note from my oboe. The band director had stared at me for a couple seconds, before giving up, and moving on to the first piece of music. He told me to work on my tuning at home, and stopped pressuring me to play. After class was over, I felt like my life was ruined.

“That’s the news we have for today! Now I’ll hand the spot light to Aria!” Our president, Melanie, said. She gave us the news for the band everyday, and she was never afraid of the spotlight. I wanted to be like her. And now was my chance. I practiced SO much the other night, and I needed to overcome this fear. The oboe player was once again absent. I stared at my tuner, and didn’t think about the people around me. I focused at the task at hand. “Wow! You got in tune right away!” My friends said, after I had finished. I remember the band director smiling at me, and nodding in approval.

Marigaux Paris

“Dude. You’ve only played for a couple months versus the other oboe player who’s been playing for three years, and you can get in tune quicker then he can! How’d you get so good so fast?” My friends asked. I smiled and replied “Hard work.” However that wasn’t the case. I was already a pretty fast learner on oboe, and I had gotten really good on the instrument in the first couple weeks. But my biggest problem was facing the crowd. After I had overcome it, my true skills were displayed to an audience. I had really faced my fear and had shown to the band that I could create a work of art.