Marching band wraps up a successful season

Sophie Congdon, Staff Writer

With the 2017 GCHS marching band season coming to a close, the band has been preparing and working hard for their final performances and competitions.

The marching band starts practicing their new routines in early August during a week-long band camp. They spend all day outside in the heat working on formations, sets and learning the season’s music. Dom Bertino, Grayslake Central High School’s band director, leads the band through the routines and music.

Bertino has been working at GCHS for 28 years and has been the school’s marching band coordinator since he started at GCHS.

“They have made a lot of progress,” said Bertino. “We’re gearing up towards the next competition at Marengo.”

With the amount of practice and effort put in since band camp, the marching band has shown much improvement with their performance and musicality, said Bertino. The drum majors have worked intensely preparing the band and conducting the show, while the students marched around the field, taking time to work on their visuals.

When Bertino looks at drum majors, he wants people who can lead, have musical talent and ability and conduct well.

In preparation for halftime shows, the band practices every day for over an hour to perfect their routine. Everyday during sixth hour, the students take time to practice outside just to make sure their routines are perfect.

Over 130 students are in band, a lot for Bertino to manage, but he enjoys watching the band improve each day. The choice in music also contributed to the preparation of performance.

Many hours a week are spent practicing along to a recording of the soundtrack. If the group makes an error in their formation, Bertino makes sure the band understands what they are supposed to do. He focuses hard on the formations and makes sure the musicians are on beat with their visuals.

Bertino and the marching band have worked hard this season to perform an excellent show, and their efforts have paid off in their competitions.