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Rio Norte drum line marches to success

Posted: April 14, 2009 1:02 a.m.
Updated: April 14, 2009 4:55 a.m.

The Rio Norte Junior High School drum line practices before its March 14 competition.

I have been fortunate to participate in drum line at Rio Norte Junior High School since it began last year.

As an eighth-grade student, I definitely think it's a labor of love. Since it is a club, it does not meet during the school day, and students must stay after school two days a week to rehearse. Currently, we are the only junior high in the district that has a drum-line program.

This year our group has grown to almost 20 students. In addition to our drummers, we have keyboards, electric guitar, bass, mallets and other auxiliary instruments. Our instructor, Troy King, has lots of experience with drum line, and wrote a terrific show for us to perform. It is a four-minute routine that incorporates marching, choreographed movement and props.

On March 14, we competed at Aliso Niguel High School in an event sponsored by the Southern California Percussion Alliance. There were almost 30 ensembles in attendance and it was amazing to see how elaborate some of the routines were. Since it was our first competition, we weren't sure what to expect. We had worked so hard all year, but had never been able to compare ourselves to other ensembles in performance.

When it was our turn to compete, everything went off without a hitch. All of the hours spent rehearsing paid off. We were awarded second place in the junior high division and were invited to compete in future events.

It was an awesome experience.

Marc Kraidman is an eighth-grader at Rio Norte Junior High School.


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