Appreciation to the FHC Marching Band


You’ve heard them. You’ve seen them. They are the students in the marching band. The band is the star of the halftime show at the ever-famous FHC football games. However, do you really know everyone in it?

The marching band is an important part of school spirit here at FHC. The band leads the homecoming parade, it can be heard at school tailgates, and, of course, musicians can be seen and heard performing in the stands and on the field. The musicians work tirelessly to impress the many people attending these events, but they often feel unappreciated. 

Lydia DeWitt plays the symbols in the percussion section. She expresses a strong opinion on the underappreciation of the marching band. “I think it’s frustrating how we’ve been putting in so much work all throughout August and in freezing weather all for us to go on the field and march for ten minutes while I can look up in the student section and only see one person in the whole section paying attention. None of them really pay much attention to us and you just look up after you play your songs and see one maybe two people paying attention to us.”

For some people, it’s difficult to imagine the disappointment the musicians feel when looking up while they’re performing just to see that nobody really cares. 

Jay Kittell, senior trumpet player, expresses a similar opinion about the student section’s appreciation for the marching band. “The football team seems to know how important we are, and the parents seem to know, but the student section doesn’t seem to know,” Jay says.

So, if nobody cares about it, this brings up one question: Why even have the marching band? Well, the obvious answer seems to be school spirit. The band makes the events more interesting for visitors and students. Jay Kittell has some perspective on what she thinks the marching band adds to the games. Jay says, “The band–specifically in the stands–hypes up the crowd which, in turn, hypes up the players just to get the adrenalin going and the blood flowing.”

Ellie McDowell, senior drum major, also believes that the marching band is important for the overall morale of the games. “We bring a lot of energy to the student section while playing and just put a lot of energy into playing,” Ellie says. “It just gives us a sense of accomplishment which is good for the stands overall.”

The marching band performs difficult songs and routines to give the best show it possibly can. The musicians work regularly and arduously to make the most of their allotted ten minutes for halftime. It’s not easy learning to do their performance, but they are learning nonetheless. “We are a lot better than last year,” says sophomore trombone player Sully Lower. “Last year we were only able to play the whole show by the third game but this year we are able to play the whole show.”

Now that you know what some of the members of the marching band think, let’s hear what the students outside of the band have to say. 

Senior Riley Koehler is one of the increasing numbers of students who does appreciate the marching band and the musicians for all of their efforts. “I love the band. They [musicians] are nice to listen to and I can tell how hard they work. They also make the football games better because I don’t have to actually watch football the whole time.”

In addition to the music and performances, marching band is a great place for the student musicians to truly be themselves. It is a great community for students to feel comfortable with their friends and fans. Ellie McDowell says, “It gives me a sense of family and a sense of belonging.”

Most of the band members were in the general agreement that joining the marching band was just an expectation after being in the band in middle school, but they have all chosen to stay. Why you may ask? Jay Kittell says, “The reason you start doing it is because it’s expected; the reason you keep doing it is because of a great sense of community and the great friends you meet.”

Despite the numbers of people who may not be paying much attention to you during halftime, band members know that you are appreciated. You may not be watched, but you are heard. Keep up the great work, and we look forward to the next halftime show!