The West Henderson High School Flying Falcon Marching Band took their 2018 show, “You’ve Got a Friend in Me,” to competition on Sept. 29 at Enka High School for the ‘Land of the Sky’ band contest.

The competition consisted of five categories: music, brass, color guard, percussion, and visual performance. The Flying Falcons competed well, placing third in both the percussion and music categories. The Falcons won the Jet Award, an award eligible for all sizes of bands in the competitions. The Jet Award is equivalent to the crowd favorite award.

“You’ve Got a Friend in Me” was about old friendships, romantic relationships, and helping friends in troubled times. High school bands from states as far as Tennessee gathered at Enka High School for the competition to perform their shows and watch other bands compete.

Each school shared songs and a show in order to qualify in the competition. The Flying Falcon Marching Band presented the song “You’ve Got a Friend in Me” with the trombone feature “I’ll Be There For You,” “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and “Old Friends” by Simon and Garfunkel. According to junior Chloe Eidt, the band director, Allen Klaes, picked songs that had relations to friendly, more connecting tones to show the deep connections and friendships the band has as a whole.

“Being in band is all about our friendships with one another,” Eidt said. “No one would choose to be in band if they were going to be alone.” The Falcons’ growth in size from last year’s competition caused a more significant challenge for West to compete with harder schools with slightly bigger student bodies. The title ‘competition’ may make it seem like the point of ‘Land of the Sky’ was to win, but many students said they did not see the event as a contest. They said it was more of an intrigue of the other band shows and the motivational, constructive criticism in order to perfect their following competitions of the year.

“We go because it’s fun to watch other bands and to support them.” Eidt said. “We know how hard it is to put together a show. Being involved in a community of other band students helps get the recognition that we all deserve.”

The opening act of the show consisted of seniors Jordan Chambliss and Claire Shrader, who performed a flute duet to the song “Old Friends.”

“It starts the show off with our friendship because we have been best friends since second grade.” Shrader said. “It’s a really cool way that Mr. Klaes incorporated our friendship into the show.”

According to Shrader, the crowd favorite was the song “Married Life” from the movie Up. It consisted of a mini skit, where Berto Bell and Jessica Archis, juniors, staged a marriage proposal.

“I get to do a scene with my girlfriend, Jessica, and get to dance and act funny with balloons for part of it,” Bell said. “I get on my knees and propose after dancing with her, she says ‘Yes’ and puts the ring on and we kiss, with balloons in front of our faces and then on the last note of the song she lets go of the balloons and reveals to the crowd that we are kissing.”

The next competition is Saturday, Oct. 27 at AC Reynolds High School, called the “Cedar Cliff Classic.” Competing with the same bands again, the West Henderson High School Flying Falcon Marching Band is looking for another successful performance.

“Everyone wants to feel good on a Friday night along with upbeat music that everyone can relate to,” Klaes said. “I was really proud of their performance.”

By: Maureen Husted, Feature Writer

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