Editor's Note: Patch will be posting musician profiles and features in anticipation of the .
My name is James Koo and I am a member of the Wind Symphony. This year, the Wind Symphony is going to perform at the 2012 Summer Olympics. This is a really big privilege for all the students in this group. We are all very excited to go to London. We strive to achieve our full potential and perform an amazing concert in London.
I am currently a Junior at Cerritos High School and I have been a part of the music program each year that I’ve been in high school. In the music program, we have marching band in the fall season and then wind symphony for the rest of the year. During marching season, the band typically practices four days a week. During wind symphony, we usually practices three to four days a week.
Practices are tiring, and I have felt the toll. I sometimes stay up late at night in order to finish all my homework. It makes life more challenging, but the rewards are great. To perform a great marching show at a competition or create an enchanting melody at a concert, that is worth the trouble.
I am a band veteran. I’ve been through the hours of practice, and I enjoy it. Each year, I walk into the familiar band room carrying my instrument. I look around at the new faces, and then I see those who I recognize. The people I recognize are like me. They have been through everything I’ve been through. They have had their share of late nights. They have had their share of being yelled at and their share of struggle. They also have had their share of glory, victory, joy, and bonds. When we all walk into the familiar room, we gather and talk excitedly of the year that has passed and prepare each other for the year to come. As we walk onto the field for our first practice, I can see in everyone’s face that when it comes to band, they have no regrets.
To perform at the Olympics is a great honor; however a great honor can turn into great shame. If we were to perform a bad concert, we would have disgraced our school and music program. That is why at each practice, we practice at our best.
To achieve our goal of having a great performance, we practice our hardest and once our practice is over, we practice even more at home. Although we bring our best to practice, sometimes it just isn’t enough. Our band director, Mr. Trost, just isn’t satisfied. He points out each mistake each of us mistake and hammer us for it. I’ve been through that process for three years, and each year I get frustrated. I play the best I can, but it just isn’t enough. However I do not dwell in frustration for long for I know the true intentions of his actions.
We, the band, are lumps of ore. Mr. Trost is the smith. When the wind symphony starts, the band is rugged and dirty, but with so much potential. Our band director examines us and then smelts us over and over again, slowly refining us into our true unhidden forms. From there he sees envisions the band at its fullest potential, our goal. He hammers us again and again, and with each strike we get closer and closer to our goal. When he is satisfied, we will be proud of what we have become. Each time he corrects me or tells me to play better, I understand. In the end it will be worth it. We strive to reach our full potential like we did at Carnegie Hall the precious year. If we reach our full potential, the gold medalists at the Olympics won’t be the only people returning home with glory.
Much Like Sports, Music is About Team Work
People who play team sports typically have good relationships with the others on their team. It’s not surprising considering how much they need to work together. Everyone knows that sport players build up remarkable teamwork and relationships; however many people overlook the bonds created in a music program. We do not throw or kick a ball around, we make music. To make music, we must blend the sounds of our instruments together. If there were dissonance, the musical flow would be disrupted. We must learn how each person plays their own instrument. The better players help the weaker players because we all know that in the end, if not everyone is on par, we will not sound on par as a whole.
Our music instructor likes to hammer and refine us. It helps us a lot, but sometimes it hurts whether or not we know it is for our own good. If this ever happens, the rest of the band will comfort the one who is hurt. Throughout each season, we spend so much time together. We work together to make our music as perfect as possible. I can honestly say that the bonds I have created with people in the Wind Symphony are some of the strongest I have ever made.
This summer is likely to be the epitome of our high school lives. We intend to make it a moment that we will never forget and to bring back the gold in our hearts from the Olympics.
* The Cerritos High Wind Symphony will be hosting a special fundraising performance on Wednesday, July 11 at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts. Everyone in the community is cordially invited to attend. for more details on this final concert en route to the 2012 London Summer Olympics.
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Donor and Sponsorship Opportunities to Support the CHS Wind Symphony Still Available
Community members and local businesses are encouraged to donate funds toward this historic trip. Donor and sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Fundraising Coordinator Leslie J. Machado at (562) 577-1802 or via email at email@example.com.