Band Returns from England with New Take on History

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Byline: Kimberly Buck Daily Herald Columnist

When members of Glenbard West's marching band traveled from Glen Ellyn to England for the New Year's Day parade, they brought back more than just photos and souvenirs - they brought back memories and experiences to last a lifetime.

"Visiting many of the historic sites in England made history seem much more real to me," said Salli Schlacks, a freshman baritone player with the band. "At Windsor Castle, we were able to see actual paintings that we had heard about in school. We visited the Tower of London and saw the scaffold where many famous people had been killed, including some of the wives of Henry the eighth."

Jim Rio, a junior who plays sousaphone, also got a new historical outlook.

"The trip brought history into a new perspective for me," Rio said. "Visiting sites such as Oxford University and Stratford-upon-Avon, Shakespeare's birthplace, made me realize just how new the United States really is. There were so many things happening in England long before our country was founded."

The band was one of 20 chosen to represent the United States in London's New Year's Day parade. Clad in their green and white uniforms, the 114 band members played "Chicago" and "My Kind Of Town" for a live broadcast via the British Broadcast Channel in England and throughout Europe.

During their week's stay, the students had ample opportunity to experience England. Alex Garmoe, a junior in the percussion section, enjoyed learning what everyday British life was like. …