Marching Band makes history

Millard West wins State band competition


Millard West Band Instagram

Band on the field after their win was announced.

Valerie Pioppi, Staff Reporter

On Saturday, Oct. 22, the Millard West marching band made history, winning State for the first time, taking home caption awards “best music,” “best general effect,” and “best percussion.”

Since July, members of the band have been hard at work to put together their show, “Windows To Arabia.” The show consists of selections from “Arabian Nights,” “Wind and the Lion,” “Scheherazade,” and “Wind and the Lion Finale.”

With daily rehearsals starting at 7 a.m., additional rehearsals Monday and Tuesday nights, and show previews for friends and family, the band members were hard at work preparing for the season ahead of them. On Saturday night, the hard work paid off. Millard West Band won State for the first time in history. 

Following the announcement of Millard West winning “Best Percussion,” senior and drumline rank leader, Sean Higgins, was thrilled. 

“It was so great to see graduated friends and drumline alumni so excited for us.” “We didn’t win it for ourselves, but for the 26 years of band before us.” Higgins said. 

Band director, John Keith, couldn’t have been more proud of the band.

“It was an amazing performance,” Keith said. “Seeing the emotion on everyone’s faces as they walked off the field was incredible.” 

The band couldn’t have done it without their drum majors, seniors Jordan Larsen and Conrad Hoffman. 

In regards to his experience as a drum major, Hoffman said “It was humbling. There were a lot of drum majors ahead of me that I took inspiration from.” 

Beyond State, the band performed in four other competitions and four performances, including football games and premiere. The band even hosted a widely attended competition at Buell Stadium, called “Wildcat Classic.”

The season may have just ended, but some students are already looking ahead. 

Senior Drew Higgins said “The program took some bigger steps this year, with the underclassmen really stepping up. I can’t wait to see them perform next year.”

This year may have been Millard West’s first state win, it’s clear it won’t be the last.