Student is Nominated to try out for Military Band

By Dylan Porter, Opinion Editor — Military band is a highly selective program where thousands of students throughout the country send audition tapes and videos of them playing their respective instruments and marching. These tapes are sent to the Army, Navy, Coast Guard, National Guard, and Air Force’s USA All American marching band programs, where they delve through the thousands of audition tapes they receive and choose the best of the best.

Enter junior Harrison Ruble, Oboe section leader of the Symphonic Winds.

“Students from all over the country audition to perform in the Army football league bowl,” Ruble said. “I found out a couple months ago that I was nominated for it [By Mrs. Giotta], but I was given information for the next audition process this month”.

The Army League Bowl takes place in San Antonio, Texas and will most likely take place sometime in January. The trip is an all expenses paid trip, paid for by the USA All American Band program.

However, being allowed to audition to play in this particular performance does not mean that you get accepted into one of the USA all American marching band programs. While it is an integral step in the right direction, there is another, more selective auditioning procedure. Auditioners must send further audition tapes and videos of themselves marching and playing your instrument, where they will be judged more in depth and stringently by the heads of each respective military branch band.

Getting accepted into one of these programs does not mean that you have to enlist yourself into the respective branch of the band you get into.

“I’ve previously been interested in being involved in ROTC [Reserve Officers’ Training Corps] and in the military after my high school career,” Ruble said. “I wasn’t interested in this particular program until I was approached by Mrs. Giotta a few months ago when she told me that she nominated me for the program.”

Ruble’s fascination with a musical career is not a recent development. In fact, it is quite the contrary.

“I’ve definitely always wanted to play instruments, and from a young age that’s all I’ve wanted to do,” Ruble said. “Growing up, my parents weren’t musicians but I always heard their music. My mom liked sappy 70’s and 80’s classic rock, and my dad has a big metal collection that got me into music.”

Ruble plays a very large variety of musical instruments. At school he plays oboe, piccolo, flute, alto sax and bari sax. On his own time, he has also learned to play guitar and piano. However, his favorite musical pursuit thus far happens to be Jazz band.

“I really like the small ensemble setting and playing improvised solos,” Ruble said. “I really like just standing up in front of a crowd and just getting to play.”

Either way, Ruble, who is currently working on his audition tapes to perform at the Army Super Bowl halftime show has taken an important step into being selected into a highly prestigious and selective program.

[Updated Aug. 18, 2017: This article has been reformatted for consistency.]