Color guard adds ‘visual attribute’ to marching band

Anna Stockton, Staff Reporter

Wielding heavy flags, poles, and pickaxes, precise choreography, and the aim for perfect synchronization: only one team can lay claim to such requirements. The color guard, an organization that works tirelessly to ensure that every step is taken on beat and executed with precision, a feat that often goes unrecognized.

“We put in a lot of practice time. The kids practice a lot at home and we have to go very slowly to make sure every little detail is met,” color guard coach David Sadler said. “It’s a very slow and repetitive process. We have really advanced kids and kids that have just begun, but we have to make them all look like they’ve had years and years of experience. We have to try and get everyone to look like one cohesive group.”

The band and color guard work together to make the show the best it can be. The band uses instruments to create the music the audience hears. The color guard, however, is charged with interpreting that music into a physical, observable way through the use of dancing and props.

“The color guard is like the visual attribute to the marching production,” Sadler said. “So what that means is what you hear, the color guard’s job is to make it so that you see it in addition to hearing it.”

This year the team has been tasked with creating a visual spectacle for the show titled “The Ascent.”

“They’re dressed in these really cool modern mountain climbing uniforms and they have big pickaxes, like mountain climbers use,” Sadler said. “All the flags and stuff that they use have Mt. Everest on them. We take the music, what the band is trying to sell, and try to sell it visually instead of musically.”

Sadler, a new addition to the color guard organization, sees potential in his team and wants to seem recognized for their hard work and dedication.

“I want them to have pride in their activity in the band and in the color guard,” Sadler said. “Because it’s a passion project, you have to be fully dedicated and really fall in love with what we do. I think these kids have it. They want the program to be something and to be recognized in Lovejoy, for people to see how hard they work. They’re a very passionate group of kids”

While the group focuses most of their practice time toward perfecting their performances, the group often gets together outside of school to socialize.

“The best part about being in color guard is that everyone comes from different activities and are still able to be really close and have good relations with each other,” senior and captain Madeleine Hamilton said. “There’s a lot of fun activities we do outside of just practicing.”

Team members encouraged the student body to come out and watch the performance.

“We perform every Friday at halftime of the games, and at home games we do a pre-show which is just a little snippet of things we do,” junior Audrey Edwards said. “Everyone should come check it out.”