As the final notes of the 2023 marching band season echo through the halls of Bedford High School, it’s evident that this year was nothing short of remarkable.
The season kicked off with a dedicated group of around 30 students, including enthusiastic participants from John Glenn Middle School (JGMS).
Band director Jim Felker reflected on the unique culture cultivated this year, emphasizing the dedication of the students and the high standards set by the seniors. The support from the student section marked a positive shift with peers cheering for their friends and creating an atmosphere of unity.
Three competitions awaited the band, hosted by the New England Scholastic Band Association (NESBA). Felker described these events as the band’s “regular season games,” offering invaluable opportunities for students to showcase their musical talents to an audience solely dedicated to supporting them. The anticipation and excitement for the competitions were palpable with students expressing confidence in their abilities and high hopes for success.
While traditional measures of success in competitions may not have been achieved, the season was victorious in fostering teamwork, camaraderie, cooperative learning, and student mentoring. The infusion of positive energy, particularly from the JGMS students, was a driving force behind the band’s success. The older members welcomed the newcomers with open arms, creating a supportive environment where everyone felt like valued team members.
The band’s commitment to musical excellence, as per the “Felker Philosophy,” was evident in each performance. Despite not conforming to the current trend of incorporating theatrical elements into shows, the band embraced their unique approach and felt proud of their season. The emphasis on musicality and coordination in both playing and marching resonated with the students, leading to a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment.
Beyond the field, the band celebrated a successful fundraiser, generating over $2000 in profit by selling holiday treats and cake rolls. This financial boost places the BHS Marching Band on the cusp of a significant milestone – new uniforms for the first time since 1997. The prospect of updated uniforms symbolizes not only the band’s growth but also its commitment to evolving with the times.
As the season concludes, the BHS Marching Band stands at the threshold of an exciting growth period. With the support of the community, successful fundraisers, and the dedication of its members, the band is poised for a bright future. The involvement of JGMS students has added a new dynamic to the ensemble, and the hope is to keep them engaged and inspired for years to come. The marching band’s journey is a testament to the power of music, unity, and the unwavering spirit of these talented students.