Band Marches Into Their First Performance of the Season

Elizabeth Secor, Staff Writer

After working for weeks, day and night in 100 degree heat, the Mighty Wolves Band got to shine at their halftime show Night Shadows on Aug. 29 at the Toyota Stadium.

“I continue to stay in band because to me, there is nothing more amazing than making music with others,” Rachel Ball said. “It is knowing that you are contributing to something bigger than yourself.

Drum major Camille Heidelbaugh agrees with Ball on how important band is but for her it is not just the music, it is the people.

“I have stayed in band for so long because for me band is home,” Heidelbaugh said, “We truly are a family.”

Heidelbaugh has participated in band since middle school and soon her time in band is coming to an end.

“After halftime, it felt somewhat bittersweet knowing it was the start of the end of my time in West marching band,” Heidelbaugh said. “This performance is really making me look forward to the rest of the season.”

Ball shares Heidelbaughs view on the rest of the season after how the performance went last Thursday.

“Our visuals got a great reaction from the crowd and we did a great job of staying together,” Ball said.

The band has spent hours upon hours working to perfect their performance.

“We usually spend 2-3 hours outside in the morning learning how to march and in the afternoon when we rehearse our music,” Heidelbaugh said.

While the practices took weeks, the planning took even longer.

“I pick a list of tunes first, then we cull it down, then other people bring in ideas, and we start in late fall,” band director Jackie Digby said. “Then we had a meeting with our music arranger and show designer in February and finalized plans. Then our arrangers started working on it some time in late spring.”

The music that was decided upon by Digby and others made its way into the show all planned and timed out.

“We have a couple of famous pieces featured most notably In The Hall Of The Mountain King composed by Ddvard, Danse Macabre by Camille Saint-Saens  and This Is Halloween by Danny Powell,” Heidelbaugh said.

The theme for this year’s halftime show is Halloween, chosen for the band to perform for 10 weeks.

“We are going to perform at least parts through the football season and two marching contests,” Digby said “It is something I think we can live with for that amount of time. It is going to benefit the kids and the audience will enjoy it as well.”

Heidelbaugh looks into the future with excitement for what is to come.

“During the second movement of the show, the whole band, brass especially have a big musical hit that absolutely blew me away,” Heidelbaugh said. “I cannot wait to hear them throughout the rest of the season.”