Make the Best of a Weird Season

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A photo of Killian Weston.

Here we are, still in the midst of a pandemic that is impacting every aspect of our lives, including marching band and color guard. With our main performance opportunities getting canceled, many programs are also canceling their seasons. Others are putting together abbreviated shows with rehearsals and drill that follow school guidelines. Regardless of which direction your program has gone, you can still forge relationships among your cohorts and improve your skills for the future.

Building Strong Bonds

The bonds formed within a guard can create some of the strongest friendships out there. Even though you’re not necessarily spending the same hours rehearsing together, find ways to hang out and connect. These chances to gel can be especially important for new members who don’t have past seasons of friendships and to seniors who are trying to make the best of their final season with the team. Plan a time to play online party games, hang out in a video call, or get together outdoors somewhere that allows enough distance for everyone to be comfortable. Perhaps have a picnic (everybody brings their own food) or tie dye T-shirts.

Learning on Your Own

Keep practicing! Strengthen your fundamentals and learn more on flag and/or weapon. Expand your dance vocabulary, build more strength, and work on your flexibility. Some amazing performers are offering free or low-cost online classes for all levels. Most of them post on Instagram or other social media. Even though you may feel let down by having a shorter show (or no show) to prepare, use the extra time and the drive that would normally get you through the season to make the next season stronger from the beginning.

This fall marching season has been weird—no denying that—but on the other side of the pandemic, hopefully we’ll look back and still remember the bonds we made and the things we learned along the way. Each of us will have the season we create for ourselves.

About the author

Killian Weston

Killian Weston is a color guard instructor and designer in southeast Michigan. She began performing with her high school marching band in 2002 and continued with college marching band and collegiate winter guard. She has taught several guard units and is a prospective judge in the Michigan Color Guard Circuit.

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