Montgomery Blair High School's Online Student Newspaper
Wednesday, August 15, 2018 8:58 pm

Clubs: Marching Band

Time: Tues. and Thurs., 3:30 p.m.
Place: Room 14, Band Room
Sponsor: Michelle Roberts
President: Madeline Billhimer, Marie Mencher
"Even though the football team loses every week, we win every single game," says junior alto saxophonist Joe Gilbert of Blair's marching band.

A fairly recent incarnation of an old Blair tradition, the marching band, dubbed "MB Squared," is a group of motivated musicians harmonizing in school spirit. They rehearse twice a week and perform at football games, pep rallies and community events like the Kensington Labor Day Parade.

The group meets in the band room to practice pieces, but moves the action outside to choreograph on-field direction. The teacher parking lot is even painted to simulate the football field.

What is hard to simulate is the typical enthusiastic crowd reaction to movie theme songs like "The Incredibles," "Superman" and "Zorro." "Everyone's always pleased to hear familiar tunes," says junior Peter Lansworth, who plays bass drum.

A key element to the band is the eight-person drum line, led in part by Lansworth. "It uses a different sound because it's obviously more beat oriented," Lansworth says. "The drum line generally produces music that is more exciting, faster paced and overall more fun for the audience."

Marching band members receive community service hours for participation. "It's a chance to make a difference in the community but it's not boring like picking up trash," Gilbert says.

The 2007 season is drawing to a close, but the marching band is eager for a new batch of recruits next school year. With about 40 current members, down from around 70 two years ago, "it would be awesome if we had more people," Gilbert says.

There are no auditions and no prior experience is necessary to join, but all members must attend a two-week band camp at Blair in late August before the start of school.

If interested in joining marching band, please contact Michelle Roberts.

Club beat by Sophie Schwadron