DOWNEY - While back to school for most students means getting ready to hit the books, for hundreds of high school students at both Downey and Warren, heading back to school means preparing for a rigorous and time consuming season of marching band, and on top of that, both Downey schools will be competing in the same division this year.Marching band is known to be one of the most underrated activities that students choose to engage in, but what it isn't known for is being a very serious and competitive extra-curricular. Many students practice up to 12 hours a week in order to perfect their marching skills, preparing for the big fall season ahead. Both Downey and Warren high school have phenomenal, award-winning marching bands, with carefully designed shows that are sure to impress. "Our season is shaping up nicely thus far…Our show this year is 'The Music of Queen,' and features a full time electric guitar, drum set, and piano," said Warren High School band director David Niemeyer. "This year's band is going to be very entertaining to watch and hear perform, and our guard has some very strong returners this year who are looking sharper than ever!" While Warren High School is focused on their rock-inspired instrumentation, Downey heads in a different direction, shedding light on one of the seven wonders of the world with their more traditional, Egyptian inspired show. "The season is progressing great. We are on time and much more ahead than last year. With a new drill writer and marching coach, things are going very smoothly, and happening in a timely manner," said Downey High School Band Director Corneliu Olariu. "Our show this year is called 'The Pyramids,' which features a very exciting arrangement by Don Hill." Both marching bands have obviously come great lengths in the short time they've been rehearsing this season to perfect their productions. Yes, both bands work hard to earn the top spot and show immense dedication to the sport, but if both are in the same division, which will prevail? When both band directors were confronted with the question of a possible high school rivalry, both admitted that there is obviously somewhat of a battle for bragging rights, but overall both schools focus on competing with only themselves in order to achieve their highest potential. Downey and Warren High School marching bands have come a long way in recent years, and now that they are in the same division, who will prove victorious? You can catch Downey at their first show Oct. 9 at Glover Stadium in Anaheim, and shortly after that head over to see Warren at Baldwin Park High School on Oct. 23. As the season unfolds, only their performances will determine which band akes the lead. So go support your high school of choice, and see which band dominates.
********** Published: September 16, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 22