Ever since I was in elementary school, I have been involved in the arts in some way. In second grade, I was a door greeter for my school’s production of “South Pacific.” In third grade, I was an extra for “Fiddler on the Roof” and continued to be a part of the musicals until I graduated. In high school, I was also involved in the marching band as part of the color guard. I did color guard all throughout high school and continued it when I came to IUP. Now, I have been part of the IUP marching band for three years. Being part of the musicals and marching band has taught me many valuable life skills that have helped me throughout my life. Here are the four things I’ve learned from being involved in the arts:
1. Time Management
I’ve always been someone who likes to be on time. I hate walking into a class or a meeting that has already started. When I joined marching band, time management was taken very seriously. If you’re not 15 minutes early, then you’re late. This is out of respect for everyone involved in the band. It’s takes a lot of people to put on a performance and it’s everyone’s responsibility to show up on time.
2. ConfidenceIf you’re able to get on stage and recite a ton of lines or put on a song and dance in front of your peers, then you can do anything. Growing up, I was a relatively shy person and I would still consider myself to be introverted. I don’t necessarily love getting up and giving presentations in class. However, being in musicals has strengthened my public speaking skills and has given me so much more confidence. Even though I still get nervous to give presentations, it’s much more manageable now.
If you’ve ever been involved in the arts, you know that it’s not possible to do it alone. Musicals take actors and actresses, extras, stage crew, choreographers, directors, lighting and sound crew, just to name a few. Marching bands require every instrument along with a color guard or dance team. You have to know how to work together so that you’re able to put on a good performance.
Being in musicals and marching band is no easy feat. Musicals takes hours and hours of long practices before or after school or practices on weekends. Marching band has you out practicing in the hot summer sun or in a blizzard. This has taught me how to push keep going even when things get difficult and to never give up.
Musicals and marching band have taught me many valuable life skills that are able to transfer to other aspects of my life. I’m so glad I’ve had the opportunity to be involved in the arts and I encourage everyone to get involved if given the chance.
(All photos by Randi Marodi)