Our plan was to begin learning the 4th and final production of the show. It contains 16 drill moves and is the most complex part of our show. The staff was prepared to teach approximately 50% of this new material...after all, we had a long Friday...we were all tired...it was going to be hot (and what's up with September being hotter than August!?)....so we anticipated a rather lackluster rehearsal day.
Enter the 2013 Pope Marching Band. As rehearsal began, there were some sleepy faces and fuzzy brains...the start of fundamental marching was a bit like a ride on the bumper cars...lots of random "improvisation" as we tried to get it all together. Then, after a few minutes, things started to gel. The motivated and enthusiastic students throughout the group kicked it up a notch and everyone went along with them. Soon, things were running smoothly. Then, things were running faster. Then, we hit the lunch break and realized that we had already taught more material than we had planned to teach all day. After lunch, we forged ahead and learned the music to go with the marching. We finished that before we reached the last rehearsal block....SO.....we kept right on going.
In what can only be described as an amazing rehearsal day, we learned all but the final two moves of the 4th production! The kids pushed through the fatigue, the heat, and the sheer amount of details to remember and did a fantastic job! It was really something to be proud of. The show is shaping up to be spectacular. We are a bit ahead of schedule, which should allow us to really focus on perfecting things before our first contest. In many of the past years, we have still been learning the final moves of the last production on the week of the first contest...now we are looking at having the entire show by Cobb Exhibition!
Many thanks to the chaperone crew...due to the heat, we doubled up on water and gatorade breaks and the chaperones were filling cups and changing them out about every 30-40 minutes. We had a junior football injury at their game and the chaperones had to clear the way and help the emergency vehicles through the gates and up to the field. We had one band student who had problems with the heat and the chaperones got him taken care of right away. Talk a full day!
In addition to all the material we learned, we learned something else today. Even when you are tired, even when it is hot (or cold), you have the ability to work through it and accomplish amazing things. Too often, we opt for the easiest way out...the path of least resistance. We look for the shortcut or we simply give a mediocre effort and tell people that we are giving "110%" (which is technically impossible anyway...). We settle for a portion of what we might do and call it "good enough". Then we sit back as another individual or group betters our efforts, wins the prize or gets the accolades, and we say "they were just lucky". Nope. They probably just worked harder. So, as your student comes home, collapses in bed or on the couch and vows to sleep for the next 18 hours...know that they really did do a great job today and outworked what many of their peers did in the same amount of time. when all is said and done, they will be able to look at this season's accomplishments with pride and say, "I made that happen!"