Columbia High School marching band wins state championship

This is the 8th time CHS marching band has won first place.
This is the 8th time CHS marching band has won first place.
Published: Nov. 7, 2022 at 6:48 PM CST
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COLUMBIA, Miss. (WDAM) - The Columbia High School Marching Wildcats are making history one music note at a time.

After many months of practice, discipline and thinking outside the box, their performance at Pearl High School in the state championship earned the Marching Wildcats.

“When we design our shows, we try to make sure we’re going to do something that will put it over the top,” said Assistant Director of Bands Bill Thompson.

He said in the past, they have always gone above and beyond.

“It started in December of last year with us starting to plan out the show,” said Leslie Fortenberry, the first female director of bands at Columbia, “Then, we started band camp in the last week of June, and it’s been a full force.”

If animatronic dinosaurs weren’t enough, CHS’s band will take you on a journey back in time with this year’s theme entitled “Dem Bones.’”

It takes hard work according to Ashley Green, senior and clarinet section leader. Green said despite delays due to rain, the experience helped her learn about herself and her classmates.

“As a freshman, when I first walked into marching band it was definitely different from sitting in eighth grade just playing music all day.,” said Green.

“I must be patient with my members, especially freshmen because they’re babies, so they’re going to make mistakes as I did,” Green added. “Patience is something that I learned, and leadership is something that I learned as well.”

With great leadership and perseverance, they were able to make history.

“The kids were under a lot of stress during that time, but I said, look, it’s just something we’re going to have to deal with,” said Fortenberry. “Everyone is going through it, but you all have always dealt well under stress.”

The Marching Wildcats will receive championship rings soon.

The next step is to prepare the marching wildcats for their Christmas concert.

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