Lansing Eastern High School gets the band back together for a virtual performance
In this edition of Schools Rule, WILX News 10 is highlighting how one Mid-Michigan high school was able to 'get the band back together' virtually.
A fight song can be unifying. Many people never forget their school song and it is no different for Lansing Eastern High School.
That is why their band director knew he had to do something to get his students playing together again.
"I got into teaching music and I found it extremely rewarding to work with other people," explained Mauricio De Rosso. De Rosso emigrated to the United States as a child and now teaches band for Lansing Eastern High School.
Their virtual performance features students on various instruments as they play their school fight song, complete with a count-in from their Drum Majors.
"It makes me feel like we got to bring everyone back together," explained Juli Yang, a sophomore clarinet player who is also one of the school's Drum Majors. "Everybody's watching the video and you're like, 'Yea, Eastern!"
Perhaps now, more than ever, their fight song is bringing students and graduates together-even when they physically cannot be.
"The video has a lot of shares," explained Mr. De Rosso. "A lot of alumni are sharing, some are even saying, 'Sounds great! Class of '76!'" De Rosso beamed. "That's amazing."
Mr. De Rosso made a backing track for his students to play along to. Each student recorded their part individually and then Mr. De Rosso compiled them into one piece.
"It made my day to be honest, just seeing everyone play together was really heartwarming," Yang said.
"I prefer playing with an ensemble rather than just myself, so knowing that I was going to get to hear it all put together with other people again, it made me really happy," explained Eliana McDonald, a sophomore trumpet player.
The video has been shared more than 1,000 times on Eastern's Facebook page.
"It's been really hard to deal with that and get used to the fact that you're done," explained Meranda Putmon. Putmon is a Class of 2020 Senior. She plays the alto saxophone and is one of the Drum Majors for Lansing Eastern. "Even though we didn't really have the full thing, the virtual band definitely helped up my spirits."
Normally in June, the band would be preparing for the upcoming marching season. The season is on hold for now but they say they will keep playing on virtually.