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Big Reds band seniors help guide underclassmen before leaving

Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 2:03 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - The Parkersburg High School band has decreased in size over the years.

And after this year’s large senior class leaves in spring of 2021, the band will be almost cut in half.

However, band director Dan White, says that these upperclassmen are giving the younger kids the tools to take over after they leave.

And that is why the Parkersburg High School Big Red band is one of your bands of the week.

“It’s weird being top dog now,” says trombonist, Jamison Ramsburg. “Because I always had somebody to look up to. But now I’ve got people looking up to me, and I got to be there for them.”

Seniors in the Big Red band are trying to build up the underclassmen as nearly half the band will be graduating this spring.

“It’ll be a challenge but I do think they can pull it off,” says senior trumpeter, Alex Underwood. “I feel like they can pull it off the next couple years.”

White says he appreciates the seniors’ efforts, but he needs some new recruits.

“I’m hoping that it will carry on and that the other kids behind them will see their energy and pick up on that and move it on through the next few years. And help me carry that through to other students throughout the county,” says White. “I’ve got to get more eighth-graders to come in this year and also the ones that have dropped out over the last couple years due to COVID and not being in school. And I got to see if I can get them, talk to them into coming back in and marching with the band.”

And while White and students work to build up the band, they’re also focused on this year’s half time show.

The Big Red band will be playing classic marching songs like ‘Afterburner,’ ‘Backtalk March,’ and ‘My Home on the Hills.’

You can catch the band playing this Friday as the Big Reds play at Parkersburg South.

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