GM Band Marches to Disneyworld

Crawford Graphix

Crawford Graphix

Lizzy Coates, Reporter

     On the day after Thanksgiving, while many are Black Friday shopping, the General McLane Marching Band will embark on a 24-hour drive to Orlando, Florida to spend four days in Disneyworld and perform in a parade in Magic Kingdom.

     “The first time I went [to Disney] with the band, and the first time the band went, was in 1990,” says Mr. Jacob Malec, GM Marching Band Director. The band has been making the trip every other year for the past 29 years.

     This time, 77 students and eight chaperones on two buses will take the journey, spending Saturday, Nov. 30, at Hollywood Studios; Sunday, Dec. 1, at Magic Kingdom for the parade; Monday, Dec. 2, at Disney Springs for a musical workshop and then at Animal Kingdom; and Tuesday, Dec. 3, at Disney Springs for the Jazz Band performance and then at Epcot, departing around 10 p.m. Tuesday night for the day-long drive home.

     Malec says the thing he’s most excited for is “the musical workshop we’re doing.” On Monday, Dec. 2, the band will, for the first time, have the opportunity to sight read new music, rehearse together, and record the music for the soundtrack of a cartoon or short movie in the “You’re Instrumental” workshop. “Most bands only get to do one thing; they get to do the workshop, or they get to perform [in the parade or as a jazz band]. We’re doing all three, so that’s a big deal,” Malec explains.

     The band members, on the other hand, seem to be looking forward to all sorts of things on the trip. Senior Markus Zukowski says, “I like the bus ride there,” where kids will watch movies, spend time with their friends, and sleep in piles on the floor.

     Others are more park-oriented. “I’m most excited for Epcot because we get to visit all the little countries. That’s really cute to me,” explains senior Remlee Robinson. Senior Maddy Staszewski wants to go to “Magic Kingdom to get a picture in front of the castle with my friends.”

     Still others are enthusiastic about the characters in the parks. “I want to meet Disney princesses again!” sophomore Kiersten Marendt says.

     Some students are simply excited for the trip in general. In regards to what they’re most excited for, junior Hunter Deible says, “going to Disney for the first time;” sophomore Danny Damore says, “just going to Florida: warm weather and no snow;” and freshman Pav Singh says, simply, “the antics.”

     In addition to being a nice vacation from snow and everyday life, this trip is certainly a rewarding experience for the GM Marching Band. Malec insists, “I’m looking forward to some excellent performances by our ensembles at a world-class venue in front of hundreds of thousands of people.”