Dear future Eagle Pride Band members,
Nearly 10 years ago, my mother would drag me to the football games just to watch my brother perform at the halftime show, and then leave right after. Only, it was never a chore to come, because I was always fascinated by the marchers, even before I had picked up the saxophone. I always knew I would be part of marching band, but I never understood what it really was and how immensely it would change my life for the better. I came in as a stoic saxophone player who rarely said a word, and somehow being in band brought me out of my shell as a confident, enthusiastic band geek.
The past three years I have been surrounded by fabulous musicians and fantastic friends. It’s a big jump going from only a couple friends to such a mass amount as 150! Even then, you really get to know their personalities, their likes, and their dislikes. We spend anywhere between 7-13 hours on a normal week rehearsing together, which is most likely the reason we are so close. I have been involved in a number of clubs in high school, and none of them compare to the family atmosphere of our band. On top of the bonds we make, marching band shapes us into natural leaders, preparing us for life after high school. Mrs. Britton will teach you so much more than just how to play notes, but how to bring art, love, and happiness to the world and those around you. I couldn’t be more excited about this year if I tried, because I believe this year will have the most positivity and love running through it than my past three years. This isn’t to put down the past years, I just know from experience that each year outdoes the last. Of course there will be days where we sweat more than we thought was possible and our legs are numb, but we feed off of each other’s energy to get through those practices and enjoy the hard, dedicated work that is more than rewarding enough in the end.
What seems to be forgotten is that we are more than just musicians, but performers with the field as our stage. Throughout my career as a musician, I’ve performed with a number of marvelous groups and alongside some of the best musicians, but the only performances that were truly unique and empowering to me were our marching band shows. This is the only group I have partaken in where you can completely feel the passion and connection your co-performers have towards the show as it takes place, and I wouldn’t give it up for any Broadway performance or a stadium gig. There are performers who just go through the motions, and then there are performers who always bring the show to life and make it fresh for each performance. We are the band who is consistently adding to our show to keep it new and alive every week, because that is what gives meaning to what we do. We do it for the audience along with for ourselves. I have goosebumps running down my arms as I’m currently thinking back to my freshman year at NAU Band Day when the show seemed to click with everyone and I was purely elated while marching off the field. These moments are so unique to someone who is a performer, and what I will cherish when I think back on by days at Sandra Day O’Connor. To be honest, band and choir will be the only memories that will stick with me as I continue on with my life, because through music I made my friends and created these moments that are the utmost precious to me. I am ever so lucky to be one of your drum majors for this season and honored to be involved in the process for forming the bonds we will make this year!
Sincerely, Your Drum Major Bailey Crepinsek