The Holy Cross Collegiate Drumlines traveled to Sturgeon last week to take part in clinics run by professionals and perform with five other drumlines across the province.

Playing with so many other passionate musicians was a really special moment for grade 12 bass drummer Izele Viernes

"It was a whole lot of vibes compared to when we were just playing at school because we were surrounded by people who have the same passion as us, which is playing drum line, and to be together with them was a really cool experience.," Viernes said.

Grade 11 bass drummer Jazmine Apoderado felt the same way, although seeing so many fellow talented musicians all at once was a lot to take in at first.

"I think at first I was really intimidated by all the people but then when I got to see them I got to feel more impressed than intimidated because I'm like, 'wow, maybe our band or our drumline could do that too,' she said.

The drumline's skills were put to the test, as they immediately jumped into a clinic with professionals before learning a piece with all the other drumlines in just one hour. While it was difficult at first the HCC drumline excelled, along with the other drumlines, which music teacher Sarah Haughey was really happy to see.

"Some of the kids definitely felt a little bit like I'd thrown them in the deep end. but now they're thinking about new things and new techniques and new ways to grow. And I do think that if we never leave our comfort zone, we never grow as humans, as people, as musicians. I think ultimately getting out of your comfort zone and trying something new is the best thing you can ever do to grow as a person," Haughey said.

hccThe HCC bass drum line. Unlike other instruments, the bass drummers combine to play their section. Rather than each of them having their own line of music they all combine to play it. This means teamwork and listening to each other is even more important compared to other solo instruments

The success they had actually came as a bit of a surprise to Viernes, but now that she and the drumline pulled off an impressive showing they're left feeling more confident than before.

"We didn't know that we could do that, but then we did it and playing outside, we were just vibing with the music, dancing, and all this stuff. It was like Coachella, but better," Viernes said.

While the performance and learning from professionals was definitely a huge highlight, for Apoderado the main highlight was spending time with her fellow bass drummers, especially since everyone except her will be leaving the school as they are in grade 12.

"I feel really happy that I was able to get to do this with them, this is the last time we ever got to play with all the other bass drums there. So to me it really means so much to me because it's not just about playing, it's also just about being together," Apoderado said.

The clinics were run by accomplished musicians like percussionists from the Edmonton Elks drumline, and Apoderado explained getting tips on how to maximize your technique was very useful, especially considering some of the details seemed minute but made a big difference.

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