Strumming along

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Practicing for her final test, sophomore Sydney Hemke is confident she will Ace her playing test. Inspired by her father’s skills in guitar,  Hemke figured taking guitar at school would pay off. “I like the challenge it gives you, like learning new songs,” Hemke said. “It’s hard to read sheet music, but you get used to it after practicing a lot.”

Kaelyn Miranda

A wide range of sound fills the room as students pluck the strings of their guitars. On Dec. 11, guitar students were assigned to play the classical children’s song “Frosty the Snowman” to their teacher Orlando Roman. They had two weeks to practice before Dr. Roman was able to critique the student’s ability to play the song.  

“The song is pretty nice and light,” senior Jaisen Small said. “It was kind of complicated when we had to do the two finger cords, but I think I did well.”  

Though a playing test can be challenging at times for some students, many felt that they were confident and ready to show howl they sound to Dr. Roman.  One challenge that guitar students must learn is guitar tabs, which is a form of musical notation that tells the player what note and pitch to play.  

“There’s a lot to learn in guitar,” sophomore Alyssa Vandermaelen said. “You have to learn tabs and such, but the song we’re playing is definitely manageable.”  

Because students often partner up with one another and play their instrument sharing a stand, they take advantage of this and practice together.  

“It sounds so good when you play [frosty the snowman] with other people,” junior Jasmine Tobar said. “Me and my stand partner play it together and it sounds so pretty.”  

An environment that is considered relaxing to some students is created with guitarists practicing around one another, helping them concentrate on what they need to practice.  

“Though I do get nervous before I go up to play, I normally end up calm by the end of it because I worked hard and know that I’ll get a decent grade,” junior Daniel Childs said.