Orlando Millenia

4676 Millenia Plaza Way Orlando, FL 32839-2434
Phone: 407-345-0544
Store Hours:
Mon-Fri: 10:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Sat: 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sun: 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Store Services

6 Things that You NEED to Know about Marching Band

STORE Blog

6 Things that You NEED to Know about Marching Band

Alright, we’ve been seeing all of you lately coming into our store to scoop up your marching gear, and we’re all as excited as you are! Marching band was easily one of the most fun, hyped-up experiences of my musical career and I want to take this chance to pass down some wisdom and experience form me to you.  

 

  1. Always bring a towel. And water, and sunscreen,

 

I know, I’m making marching season sound like a day at the beach, but these things are important! Especially in our Florida sun, you’ll be spending up to six hours getting nailed with UV rays and being cooked like an Easy Bake Oven recipe. Staying cool and hydrated in instrumental to keeping focus, keeping marching, and, well, not passing out!

 

  1. USE YOUR STUDENT HORN

 

It sounds obvious, I know, but I can’t stress this enough. Once upon a time, a younger, more naïve me wanted to feature my own, brilliant and distinct horn and sound on the football field. In my brilliance, I brought out my concert Silver trumpet onto that field, not knowing what kind of mistake I had just made. My poor horn was introduced to the elements, hard, from sandy valves to being drenched in the rain. The finish started to fade quickly from being soaked and burned up from the sun. Finally, a sneak attack from an unskilled color guard flag wave knocked my horn useless for the remainder of the marching season, and that was it. Guys, learn from my mistake. NEVER use your good horn on the field!

 

  1. Dress for Success!

 

Planning your wardrobe is smart. Planning your marching wardrobe before you go to school is brilliant. Nothing will make you more prepared for marching season than having your comfy clothes in your bag, ready for that after-school marching session. I always found my most comfortable practice wardrobe to be shorts, tshirts, light clothes, baseball cap, and some good Nikes or Reeboks with strong arch supports, because you’ll be standing out there for a LONG time!

 

  1. Prepare your meal plan

 

Parents, this one’s aimed at you. We know at 14 most teenagers are practicing how much pizza they can consume in one sitting, like its an Olympic sport! However, tis is a crucial point to be mindful of what we’re putting in our bodies. There are a few guidelines for this one I’d like to offer. First and foremost, lets go ahead and declare it a rule of thumb to avoid most dairy products before spending countless hours marching in the sun. I promise you, yogurt isn’t nearly as pleasant travelling in the other direction! I would also suggest being conservative on highly fibrous meals. Some simple things, like grilled chicken sandwiches, ham and cheese, grilled and steamed vegetables, and juices before going out on the field always seemed to give me the energy I needed to last the day while keeping me from being sick. I definitely suggest some protein, starch and a good handful of carbs before going back out, but avoid too many sugars, or your teen can get burned out pretty quick!

 

  1. Personal Hygiene

 

Lets face it, we’re all about to go do the equivalent of six PE classes in one night. Its time to know how to take care of the crazy aromas that are about to arise around our peers. Shower, deodorant, cologne and febreeze are about to become your best friends for the next few months. This goes for ALL of us (and believe me, we are ALL thankful for your cooperation! :D ).  This one goes TRIPLE for away games and marching festivals, as the band bus is a very unforgiving tube full of active individuals clad in wool outfits at the end of a Florida summer. Be prepared!

 

  1. KNOW YOUR MUSIC

Easily the most important thing you can do, and easiest to resolve on your own. The day you get your marching music, you should be on it like ink on a page, playing and practicing your part until you can’t forget it. Nine years later, I can still play from memory, the most difficult bits of my freshman year’s marching show, and you’d better be able to too! The devil is in the details, and the professionalism is in the preparation. Practice to perform, and you will never fail!

 

With this information I’ve shared with you, I feel you all will be beyond successful in your marching endeavors! Remember: Marching is fun, and you’re all in it together! Look out for each other, play well, and be prepared with these six areas of focus, and you will be an amazing marcher! Now, GO OUT THERE AND BLOW THOSE STANDS AWAY!

 

Ben Quiles

BQuiles@Musician.com

 

About the Author

 

Ben Quiles is an aspiring Live Show technician and blogger currently residing in Orlando. Ben has spent fourteen dedicated years of his life studying performance trumpet and live show audio-visual techniques. His hobbies include helping others become as successful as their potential, and learning new things and trends in the industry. He’s a huge gearhead, and excited to be the leading member of the Music and Arts blog team.




All-state auditions are around the corner! Are you ready??



Now, I know that not everyone is the biggest fan of auditions. When I was a student, I dreaded them like the plague. The only thing I could think of worse than writing an essay for a book report was practicing for an audition. Had I known what I do now, I would have gladly dedicated so much more practice to my auditions.

 

I’m a huge fan of the All-State and All-County auditions held yearly in our state, for a few reasons. They teach you about the importance of preparedness as a musician, and they help you get in the habit of playing for people you’ve never met who want to see how good you can be. Remember, you want to prove that you’re at your best, and the only way to do that is to be prepared. You’ve heard a million times how important it is to practice, but has anyone yet talked to you about HOW to practice?

 

So, what do I mean when I talk about how we practice? Well, practice is a little more than just playing the notes given to you on a page.  The most important phrase passed to me by my trumpet teacher is that practice doesn’t make perfect, but perfect practice makes perfect. Its not enough to just play through a piece and say its good. Do you feel the piece? Are you playing from the heart? Do you understand what the music is saying to you, the player, and the listening audience? What are all these funny little markings around the notes, and what do they mean?

 

Its important to revisit that your instrument is more than just a torture device intended to take up the time you could be watching TV and hanging out at the mall. It’s the tool of which you use to make your own personal works of art. This music that’s in front of you, its more than just ink on a page, it’s a road map to connect your ears to your heart. Every crescendo, accent mark, legato and staccato marking, they all tell a story through what you play, even if its not written out in words. You don’t want to be that boring storyteller people fall asleep listening to. Use your feelings! Invoke some emotion in your piece! Feel the music coming through you! Then, at that point, you know your practice session meant something.

 

And remember, art is meant to be shared. Play for friends and family, get the criticism you need to get better! You can always be better, and as an artist, you should live for feedback. I’m more upset when someone can’t tell me what to improve upon than I am when they pick on something I’m sensitive about or can’t yet do. Aim for those hard parts, make them your area of focus, until you can’t play it wrong. My band director used to say, “I should be able to come over to you at 3am, put a blow horn to your ear and tell you to play this piece, and you play every note perfectly!”

 

And remember, if you don’t yet have your audition materials, we do carry the books along with the FBA materials at our store. Feel free to call or come ask one of us about it today!

 

Ben Quiles

BQuiles@Musician.com

 

About the Author


Ben Quiles is an aspiring Live Show technician and blogger currently residing in Orlando. Ben has spent fourteen dedicated years of his life studying performance trumpet and live show audio-visual techniques. His hobbies include helping others become as successful as their potential, and learning new things and trends in the industry. He’s a huge gearhead, and excited to be the leading member of the Music and Arts blog team.