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Thursday, 05 December 2013 16:56

Memorable band concert ends with standing ovation


SOUNDS AND SIGHTS — The NRHEG High School Indoor Marching Band Concert was a big hit last week. Performing above from left: Zach Stenzel, Natalie Aaseth, Kendra Raimann, Haley Deml and Kevin Kalis. Below is a scene from the band’s performance of “Applause.” (Star Eagle photos by Chris Schlaak)



Contributing Writer

Music and applause. It was all you heard throughout the night and, with a rocking lineup from the 1960s to today’s pop rhythms, the NRHEG Indoor Marching Band Concert enticed the crowd that filled high school gymnasium last Monday and Tuesday night.

The jazz band began the evening with a swinging blues selection called “Attitude Adjustment” written by composer Larry Barton. The strong bass line in the tune showcased the talent in the band’s saxophone line and brass base lines with a baritone saxophone solo by T.J. Schiltz.

A lively trombone ballad, “As I Look At You,” by Les Aldrich, was played by Kellen Ferber and kept the spirit of the evening alive. Composer Chris Sharp’s “Mamacita” was the next number. The song was inspired by a ‘60s latin jazz groove with solos by trumpeters Logan Knutson and Doug Rudau, and base guitarist Will Rudau. The final selection of the evening for the jazz band was “Back Row Politics,” by Gordon Goodwin. Featuring the entire trumpet section in straight eighth rhythm, it kept the audience’s feet tapping.

After a brief rearrangement of the floor setup, the NRHEG Marching Band Drum Line lit up the gym with “Hit It” written by NRHEG Band Director Tim Siewert. It was a rousing drum line cadence including a few measures where the drum line rolled onto their marching bass drums with feet kicking up behind them keeping the beat in time. A few shouts from the members and they rolled back onto their feet and marched off the floor in style!

“Girls Just Want to Have Fun,” by Cyndi Lauper, was a sweet Color Guard performance with the line wearing bright colored T-shirts and their hair up with bandanas — ready to have a fun girls night out.

Lots of twists and dancing to the beat of the song left a melancholy feel in the air and the thought of nights in the ‘80s when most of the mothers in the audience just wanted to have fun!

Senior Drum Major Hannah Light created a memorable slide show for the seniors. With pictures from their childhood and today, and pictures from the 2013 marching season showing everything from goofing off to competition and just having a great time performing with their friends. There weren’t many dry eyes in audience after the slide show as this was the last night the seniors would be marching with the NRHEG Marching Band.
The hit of the night was the seniors’ performance to “Applause” by Lady Gaga. This drill was choreographed and written by Light and Siewert. It was a show stopper! The lights were turned off and you could hear footsteps of performers finding their way to their spots. Then music was blared from a jam box and stick figure silhouettes in neon blue, green and pink LED string lights appeared from the darkness. Marching in line formations with brief interludes of dancing, the seniors held the audience captive with laughs and applause throughout the smash drill of the evening.

After a brief intermission, the band, led by Light, marched to Elton John’s “Saturday Night’s Alright.” From the gym stage and down the stairs, different groups of the band intermixed with the rest of the band in the center of the gym. They engaged the enthusiastic crowd with hand claps while playing this popular ‘70s tune.
Junior Drum Major Aurora Strom directed “Bad Medicine” from the 1980s rock band Bon Jovi. Next, senior Kellen Ferber sat on the gym floor with legs outstretched leading the marching band in a trombone solo to “Creep” by Radiohead. This performance created sound and visual waves across the band from end to end of the gym.

With their backs to the crowd and a single wave turn, the entire band lined up to dance us through to the next song, “Thnks Fr Th Mmrs,” pronounced Thanks For The Memories, by Fall Out Boy. Each night there were almost 40 individuals, including a fan club section from the Waseca Marching Band who joined the drum majors and the color guard dancing to the “Cupid Shuffle.” Youngsters from about 3 to 18 were lined up dancing the “Cupid Shuffle.”

The final song was “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO. It’s a mock zombie shuffle with outcries through the song of “Every day I’m shuffling.” This was the song and drill the band performed at the Waseca Marching Band Classic this summer, winning them second place in their division. Siewert closed out the performance with arms outstretched in peace signs yelling “Rock On!”

The night was a huge success, drawing a standing ovation from the crowd.

Siewert noted, “I am so very proud of this band. They did a fantastic job. Their hard work and dedication paid off tremendously. We all had such a fun time with this indoor concert. It will for sure go down as one of the best.”

Many thanks are to be made to the Band Boosters, the parents, the students and all of the community that supports the band.  

The band will be traveling to San Diego in December and will be in the halftime show of the Holiday Bowl and marching in the parade. Anyone wishing to support the band can make a donation directly to the NRHEG Band Boosters or purchase Kwik Trip gift cards from any band member.

The following awards were also given during the evening:
• Rookie of the Year - Kallie Spooner
• Most Improved - Cassidy Worrell
• Color Guard Member of the Year - Jade Hill
• Panther of the Year (Most Outstanding Senior in Marching Band) - Hannah Light
Also announced were the 2014 Captains and Drum Majors:
• Color Guard Captains - Jade Hill and Kaylee Hanson
• Drum Line Captains - Hudson Mrotz and Nicole Edon
• Sr. Drum Major - Aurora Strom
• Jr. Drum Major - Jessica Nafe


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