Winter guard looks to recruit members

Performance group in need of more partcipants for upcoming competitions


Kenny Jennings

Senior Jobrinna Perez and junior Jorge Rocha preforms during the pep rally for the play offs, twirling their flags in a routine fashion. Perez has been in color guard since her freshman year and is one of the only 6 color guard members. The guard is working with the band directors to grow the team to at least 30 members.

An award winning marching band show is not just a musical production, with band members stepping in time.

For a halftime show to really reach it’s full potential and be successful, it needs a big group of color guard members.

The guard brings a depth to the show that the band members can’t because they’re working on the musical and marching aspects.

Color guard is not just a group of military soldiers who march with special flags and rifles. It’s also an intense, competitive year-round sport of men and women that consists of choreographed dance and special equipment.

In the summer and fall, members of the guard perform with the marching band. Color Guard plays a big part in marching shows, creating breathtaking visuals with flags, rifle tosses, and occasionally sabres. These effects boost the visuals of the show, and create an opportunity to receive lots of points in contests.

Band directors are currently in the middle of big recruitment push to increase the number of members.

“The guard is crucial to the effect of the marching show,” head band director, Tate Fincher said, “The guard conveys the intent and ‘storyline’ of the show in a way that the winds and percussion cannot.”

In the winter and springtime, the guard focus on its own activity called Winter Guard.

In Winter Guard the show is indoors, featuring a performance that reflects the theme of the show. The music is recorded, and the members dance to choreography along with the waving flags and rifle tosses.

The Akins Color Guard currently consists of 5-6 people, a small number compared to schools like Bowie with a count of 46 members.

Having a larger guard makes a big difference when it comes to the marching show during the fall season.

“With a larger guard you can go further with your show, and the effects are exponentially increased,” Jason Loosle, junior member of the marching band said.

Boys are encouraged to participate despite misconceptions that the sport is only for girls.

Last season a few were present, but now it’s just sophomore, Jorge Rocha. With the constant battle of prejudice against male members in guard, Jorge enjoys the sport otherwise.

“Being the only guy had its advantages, but also it has its disadvantages,” Jorge Rocha said. “The judgment of others no longer bothers me. I’ve learned to deal with it.”

No experience is needed to join. New members are taught everything they need to know, and work their way up to more difficult moves and equipment as they get better  and more experienced.

Sophomore Erika Rocha recently joined guard in the fall and participated in the 2013 marching show titled, “Under the Umbrella.”

“It was challenging at times to learn new techniques and improving on them, but it was better than I expected,” Erika Rocha said.

Color Guard is also a way to meet new people, and make new friends.

“We try to make people feel they’re wanted. We really care about each other,” senior, Jobrina Perez said.

It is the last chance she has to do what she can in color gaurd so that the Akins Guard can grow into a successful group of individuals.

“It’s hard at first, but it gets easier the more you practice. You just have to stay positive,” Perez said, “Don’t be afraid to fail. Be afraid to not try.”

In the process of recruiting more members, the Akins Guard is striving towards a brighter future.

Fincher hopes for a large turnout in the upcoming years for color gaurd. He has high hopes to remain competitive and maintain a hard working team.

“To be competitive in marching band at this point in time, you must have a great color guard that is properly integrated and executed,” Fincher said, “ At a school as large as Akins, we should have a guard of 30 or more. That is the goal, and we will achieve it.”