By Trina Bernal
On Friday, March 23rd, Benicia High School hosted the Benicia Bay Winter Review, that not only featured our very own Panther Drumline and Colorguard, but other local schools far and between Del Oro, to the north, and San Francisco, to the south, with just as amazing performers.
The night was divided into two segments; percussion and colorguard. Benicia High School hosted this event so they weren’t allowed to compete with the otherwise rival schools. But should percussion be judged, judges would pay close attention to detail with every movement and every step of their choreographed performance and battery set-up (battery is drumline terminology for, well, drums… bass drums, snare drums, and multi-tenors). As for colorguard, points are taken off when you perform over the limit, or when a guard rifle or guard flag is dropped, or setup takes longer than the intended time. Overall the judges review based on how well the music and performance come together.
The drumline played to “Spark”, where a woman’s lilting voice guided the audience along with the drumline performers. Tyler Ward (12) and Kevin Insaurralde (10) play the marimba, kind of like a xylophone 2.0; in technical terms, it’s a wooden-barred percussion instrument that when Ward hits with mallets, it produces sounds from pipes placed under the bars. Luca Di Piramo (10) plays the synthesizer, a kind of keyboard which converts electrical signals into a wonderful mix of harmonies and tones via loudspeakers.
After drumline, people were allowed to eat at the convenience table set up by the band students. Schools performed, some of them being MIT Academy High School and Middle School. By the end of the night, our Panther Colorguard performed to “With A Little Help from My Friends” by Joe Cocker. It’s an upbeat uplifting song, which one of the colorguard performers Trish Poblete (10) loves because “it’s a fun song to dance to”. Guard rifles were thrown in the air to the beat of the music, flags waved to the rhythm of the song, and the choreography was a perfect accompaniment to the song, the space wasn’t wasted as performers ran from one side to the other. Before performing, Poblete (10) did warmups to prep for performance.
The BBWR performance left the audience amazed, and a high volume of applause was heard throughout the gym. If you’re considering drumline or color guard, both Ward and Poblete warn that it’s a huge time commitment. Poblete says that “to be in color guard you have to be in it because it’s fun for you.” Doing either drumline or color guard because of exterior factors like what people will think of you isn’t productive, because it’s time consuming. It’s worth it though as it’s said by color guard performers that you get a good accomplished feeling when you catch a guard rifle mid-air.