What It Takes to Maintain a Superior
March 5, 2016
Ever since the Virginia Band and Orchestra Association instituted a rating system 34 years ago, LB has earned the rating of “superior” each year.
“Band is certainly one of the bigger activities here,” junior Ben Clark said. “We’re taken a lot more seriously here than at other schools, and I think we have a lot of respect.”
The band is known for its rigorous practice schedule, particularly come marching season, and it is common to hear many of the difficult conditions that these members face.
“It’s really time consuming,” sophomore Panhlauv Panh said.
Whether or not people truly hate the practices and the training that they must undergo, when it comes time to perform, everything comes together into one piece.
“[People complain] because it sucks while you’re doing it,” Clark said. “But when you get the superior or when you perform, it all becomes worthwhile.”
And one thing everyone can agree on is that the members of band have a reputation to maintain. In addition to the superior ratings, LB band has been known for sending four students to the renowned Juilliard School of Performing Arts.
“It’s pretty hard [to maintain the same level of excellence] because we’ve seen so many excellent bands, and we’ve been to so many different competitions that we can see what we want to be,” senior Aparna Cheran said. “You can never achieve perfection so it’s always hard work.”
One of the biggest struggles that face the band is the beginning of every year when an entirely new set of members enter through the freshman class. However, with a reputation on the line, the new members become adjusted to the program and become instrumental members to the band’s members.
“It’s always a challenge when the freshman class enters,” Clark said. “But as long as you make them take it seriously and let them know that it’s not a joke, then it becomes better. We’ve gotten superiors in the past. I don’t see why we can’t continue getting them.”