Seniors participate in winter guard team

By Baylee Owen

Senior Jordan May practices her flag routine on Saturday, Dec. 8.

Katherine White, JagWire briefs editor

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Seniors Jordan May and Brenna Iskra explain winter guard and share their experiences on their team.

What is winter guard?

BI: It’s basically a team compiled of girls and sometimes guys that do a variety of things such as flag twirling, rifle and saber tossing. It’s like dance and cheer on steroids ‘cause it’s so intense.

JM: Our coaches choose a song or composition that they think best suits us as a team and we interpret it through dance, flags, et cetera.

What are the different parts of winter guard and what do they do?

BI: Dance, flags, rifles and sabers. Dance is using your whole body to express the music. With flags, rifles and sabers, you are using your body [while] tossing the items to add to the musical interpretation. Sometimes all four parts are doing something at the same time, but they are different moves. They all flow together to express the music.

JM: They all are basically trying to express the music through how you use your props or body. There is one grand moment where all four parts are happening at the same time but normally in each part of the song just one part has the spotlight.

How did you found out about winter guard?

JM: We first found out about it from [band teacher Deb] Steiner; she gave us handouts. I did it last year also.

What is your winter guard team called?

JM: Destination Winter Guard. Last year when I joined was its first year in existence. There were three names and we all voted on which one we wanted. It’s called Destination Winter Guard because we have a lot of girls coming from different places and schools to make a show.

What did you do to prepare for winter guard?

BI: During the summer Jordan taught me the more difficult throws from what she learned last year. She prepared me for auditions which are very different from the auditions for the color guard at our own school.

JM: Brenna and I watched a lot of videos to understand what winter guard really is. We brought flags home and tried to practice some of the more challenging moves that we saw.

Q: What did you do to qualify for the Destination Winter Guard team?

BI: [We went through] a three-hour audition. We all had to learn a dance routine, and then we had the choice to either learn a rifle or flag routine. We got the emails that said we made it [Thursday, Nov. 29].

Why did you join winter guard?

JM: I did it because I loved color guard, but I found out it was a completely different experience. In color guard you complement the music; in winter guard you are a part of it.

BI: I loved color guard so much I wanted to continue on. Learning that I could continue it into the winter season, I really wanted to do it. I also heard that it was really fun and also a challenge and I’m always up for a challenge so I jumped at the opportunity.

Why do you enjoy winter guard?

BI: The challenge is fun and seeing … all of the hard work you did come together. I was even moved by the audition pieces. And the people are awesome.

JM: I like to speak through music and since winter guard has no right or wrong, I can just be overcome by the music. And for seven minutes, I can be part of something greater than just me. I can express myself in a way that words can’t.

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