New Winter Guard starts their first season

Aidan Martin, Staff Writer

The band director, Will Nicholas, of Bloomington South, has announced the start of the Winter Guard this year after a long absence of over 20 years and has taken charge under the direction of head coach Victoria Williams. An audition took place earlier this month that lets newcomers try the Winter Guard out whether they have experience in the color guard or not. Nicholas explained the importance of the guard’s establishment.

“The Winter Guard gives students in color guard or the band the ability to work on their skills so that they can become a better performer,” Nicholas said.

Winter Guard entails practicing what Color Guard would typically do in marching band, except they perform in the winter without the band. With the addition of pre-recorded music as their display for background effects, the Winter Guard practices at Templeton Elementary School in the gymnasium on a large tarp, which prevents any equipment from damaging the gymnasium floor.

The song Superbloom by Misterwives was selected by the Winter Guard to perform. Visually, the guard wears flexible clothing, and people are either barefoot or wearing slippers. They are also very dance-heavy and, depending on the show, use different forms of dance throughout the performance. There are crafted props displayed to fit the theme of the show. People can also participate in the tarp crew, where they help set up props, and carry equipment and the tarp.

Much like the Panther Regiment’s competitions, the Winter Guard will have the same type of competitions, where they travel to many other high schools in Indiana. Most competitions are run by a program called Indiana High School Color Guard Association (IHSCGA). Competitions for the winter guard will begin in January of 2023, following up with prelims, semi-finals, and finals later in the season.

Although it’s everyone’s first year in the Winter Guard, the participants are ready to work and enjoy the winter season. A senior on the team, Courtlyn Bales-Hall, talks about her feelings about the season so far.

“We haven’t really started yet, but I’m very excited to see and be a part of the program and experience a winter season,” she said.