Marching to the beat

Time, lots of music, and many days filled with long practices are all things that being in marching band entail. Kennedy marching band’s competition season is under way after having completed four competitions already.

“We have four weekends of competition,” Marching band director Lesley Fleer said. “This last weekend we performed in exhibition and got some really good comments. We have spent every week taking the judges’ comments from the week before and making changes and making everything cleaner.”

This weekend the marching band will be preforming at Kingston Stadium for State and then go to West Des Moines for the Valley marching band competition.

This year the marching band’s theme for their show is music from the television series Dr. Who. “I really like the music this year. The kids have really been enjoying it as well. They are playing it well and that’s what makes it fun,” Fleer said.

Marching band member Mckenna Woods, jr., has especially enjoyed preforming the opener of this year’s show. “The shows are always different. This year is another themed show like last year so I know the music a little better,” Woods said.

Being a part of the marching band since her freshmen year, Woods is familiar with the busyness of it all and what the competitions are like.

“I like how we get feedback so we know what to improve on. It’s also a nice change because at competitions people are there to really listen whereas at football games it can be really loud and hard to hear,” Woods said.

The commitment that marching band takes is a big one. They begin rehearsing and learning their show at the end of summer and then have marching band as a class in the mornings at school for six to eight weeks.

“The kids have really been stepping it up. This time of year is hard because you are really into school at this point and asking you to do all these extra things can be a lot. The football games, practices, and competitions can be a lot,” Fleer said. “They are sticking it out and getting some good work done. They should be really proud of themselves.”