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Coppell Varsity Winter Guard squad member Dennis Shen, senior, rehearses the 2017 show “Winter Bird.” Photo by Susan Edgley

After a tremendous run during marching season this past fall, the Coppell Color Guard turned its attention to Winter Guard, debuting both its Junior Varsity and Varsity shows in back-to-back North Texas Colorguard Association (NTCA) competitions over the last couple of weeks.

Winter Guard is an indoor sport for color guard where they compete using flags, rifles, sabers and other props, as well as recorded music, instead of performing alongside a live marching band. The teams are judged on equipment handling, movement, design and general effect. Bringing the music to life through themes, artistry and emotion is an important component.

“The Coppell Color Guard program is adjusting well to an increased demand in not only choreography, staging, and performance, but also details, personal accountability, and the overall group dynamic,” said Matthew Rummel, Color Guard Director. “We strive to instill a work ethic that will translate beyond high school.”

Coppell’s Junior Varsity show, “Mangia!” portrays chefs in an Italian restaurant, with lots of visual imagery such as red-checkered table cloths, pizza, pasta and silverware. Music includes “That’s Amore” by Dean Martin and “Funiculi Funicula” by Andrea Bocelli. The 26-member group placed 4th in the NTCA Boswell Contest’s Scholastic A division on January 20th, held in Fort Worth.

“The JV team debuted about one minute of their four-minute show,” said Rummel. “The goal was never to win, just to get those first performance nerves out of the way. The team did a great job handling a last minute change in venue that had a smaller than normal performance space. I was very proud of the professionalism displayed by such a young group.”

Coppell’s Varsity show “Winter Bird” features the title track “Winter Bird” from the artist Aurora. “The theme is about a bird in winter and how that is a metaphor for times in our life when we feel at our lowest,” explained Rummel, “yet through perseverance we can push through to a better future.”  The 14-member group performed at NTCA Lamar Contest’s National A division on January 28th in Arlington, placing 4th out of 10 groups competing.

“The only expectation for the Varsity performance is to be better than our last run-through in rehearsal,” said Rummel. “The team debuted most of their production on Saturday, which is at a higher level of difficulty than previous performances. They have worked so hard and I am impressed with their desire to constantly improve.”

The Varsity team will compete next at the Winter Guard International’s (WGI) Dallas Regional competition on February 18, 2017, which will be held at Coppell High School, followed by the NTCA Bowie Contest on March 4th in Arlington. The JV team will perform next at NTCA’s Centennial Contest on February 24th in Frisco and the NTCA Red Oak contest on March 10th in Red Oak. For more details on all upcoming performances, please view the calendar at