High School Marching Bands Deserve Respect

Goshen Community School Marching Band gets set on field to perform their show. 
Photo credit: Goshen Community School

By Caitlyn Hertzog ’24

Constant disrespect is like letting the air out of a balloon. Over time, the balloon gets smaller and smaller to the point that it doesn’t exist anymore. The balloon is just like the passion a marching band has for their show. Marching bands have a drive and passion for their craft, but if no one sticks around to watch them, the passion will die. It all starts with the school culture. It’s been great to see the positive changes at my high school over my time as a marching band student, but at many other schools, marching band students are discouraged by the lack of respect.

At both high schools and colleges, students feel that the level of appreciation and respect for what the band puts on the field is decreasing over the seasons. Kaily Lones of Tuscaloosa AZ said, “The band would come home devastated because people weren’t paying attention to their performance … they went to the concession stand or the bathrooms instead.”  It feels disrespectful when the audience doesn’t find it worthwhile to sit for 10-15 minutes and watch their peers pour their heart and soul into a show. It could be that people don’t realize how much work goes into these performances. As Andrew Brandt, a student at Knoch High School said, “The band practices for hours at the school and at home to make them sound good and enjoyable, and no one seems to realize that.”

Students in band understand that they’re not the reason most fans are at the football games, and they know they aren’t considered a sport to some people. However, the ridicule and the stereotypes disappear for those few minutes during the show. Those few minutes of performance are the freest they’ll ever feel. It is upsetting when marching band members can’t enjoy their sport without being made fun of, or are completely ignored when trying to show off their hard work. 

To many schools, the band is seen as a bunch of nerds or geeks. It hurts to see a group of people try their hardest at something that they love, only to get picked on and ridiculed. If the roles were reversed, and it was the football team or the soccer team, or any other popular sport, they would not stand for that. So why should the band? The band is a group of some of the strongest people in the school, whether they are recognized or not. Let’s give them the credit they deserve.




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