High School Bands and Marching Bands, Notes & Essays by David Rodeback

Energies: Unusual (A Photo Tribute to Marching Bands, Part III)

Part III of my happy photo essay features more images from last fall’s state and regional high school marching band competitions in St. George, Utah. In Part I the energy was potential; things were about to happen. In Part II it was kinetic. Things were moving, happening.

Here the energy is . . . unusual. You’ll see things you might see every day somewhere else — but not in a marching band field show. Are you ready?


USS Arizona Memorial
USS Arizona Memorial

A large, red apple
Cannons — and cannon fire
Egyptian eye
Egyptian eye, watching us
psychedelic mushrooms
Women dancing on giant, psychedelic mushrooms
A cello
A cityscape
palm trees
Palm trees on a football field
pirate booty
Ill-gotten pirate booty
pirate poison
A cask of pirate poison
pirate women with swords
Pirate women swordfighting
A taxicab
ship's wheel
A ship’s wheel
Ahem. Percussionists. Always there, often unusual.
A big, radiant rabbit

There’s a story about the rabbit, whose (human) mother I met while we stood in a line together outside the stadium. On Friday said rabbit sprained her ankle in warm-ups, badly enough that she couldn’t perform that evening. Saturday morning was devoted to finding a way to tape it up so she could perform. By Saturday afternoon, and again in the evening’s finals, she was scampering all over the field, as a big, happy rabbit in a marching band field show should.

Finally, I wonder what it means that none of the photos here are of the American Fork High School Marching Band, which is well represented in the other parts of this essay, and which won both of that weekend’s competitions. Just a photographical happenstance, I suppose. It’s not as if they never use props. For example, I remember large scissors and spectacularly bad hair, not so very long ago.

Next time, in Part IV, we bring all things potential, kinetic, and unusual to an end — at least until the first local marching band competition begins on Saturday.

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