The SWHS Band Doesn’t Get Enough Recognition


The 2017-2018 SWHS Band

Jillian Thibodeau, Editor

At South Windsor High School, chorus, band, and orchestra make up the music program, however, band gets the least attention out of the three. Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band are the two groups that consist of more than one hundred students all together. As a member of Wind Ensemble, I feel that band doesn’t get enough recognition.

Junior Veena Bellam plays the clarinet in Wind Ensemble and Symphonic Band. She agrees that the band doesn’t receive much attention and says that,”If you look at groups like choral spectrum, they get a lot of attention, whereas people who are in band don’t seem to matter to anyone. We’re never really the talk of the school.” Students like Bellam, believe that Spectrum gets most of the recognition for what they do, since they have won multiple competitions in the last year. They have been working really hard to get where they are, and so have we. So, many students in band wonder why we aren’t recognized for our hard work as well.

Senior Grace Helmke, who plays the flute in Wind Ensemble as well as sings in Choral Spectrum, explains that, “Music is easier to understand for most people when there are words to follow, because then the meaning is clear. When the meaning is implied through the phrasing and emotion and when words aren’t used, it’s a different ball game.” She implies that people don’t want to listen to something that they don’t understand, so they just ignore it all together. This may explain why many students don’t have any interest in coming to any band concerts.

Students in band typically get upset that people tend to ignore all the work we do to be where we are. Another senior and flutist in Wind Ensemble truthfully states that “It’s very frustrating because we work so hard to put together a concert that not a lot of people show up to and appreciate.” It is true, that the Wind Ensemble works extremely hard for little recognition. Through tough rehearsals and challenging pieces for people of all skill levels, it is frustrating that for the amount of effort put into improving their skills is less appreciated by their peers.

Many students that take part in band want to be recognized for their hard work, and they have suggestions to try and make that a reality at our school. Powell suggested that “We could work with the TV news and maybe play a piece for the morning announcements,” Very similarly, Bellam is interested in seeing the band “play outside of school more or even have concerts for the entire school.” Lastly, Helmke went into detail and argued that “If we played genuine band repertoire, we played it well, and we played it with meaning and purpose, then the tickets would sell and we would be heard.”