NPHS band alum continue careers at college level


Noah Riffe, Journal Star

NPHS alum Drew Carlson (middle) celebrates after winning a competition during the Cornhusker Marching Band Exhibition at Memorial Stadium on Aug. 19. Carlson is one of six NPHS band students on the Cornhusker Marching Band. Fellow NPHS alum, Lexi Nolda is seen behind Carlson. The Loper Marching Band has six alum.

Sawyer Davis-Magnuson, Editor-In-Chief

 Twelve NPHS Bulldog Marching Band alumni march in the UNK and UNL marching bands. 

Senior Steffani Nolda, junior Jack Carlson, sophomore Annie von Kampen, and freshmen Dawson McGahan, Lexi Nolda and Drew Carlson are all active participants in the Cornhusker Marching Band. 

In the Pride of the Plains Marching Band (UNK) are juniors Joel Bradley and Bailey Roeder, freshmen Andy Kittle, Hannah Sims, Malikiah Kunse and Lucas Ratliff. 

Steffani Nolda was the alto saxophone section leader in high school. 

“I always wanted to be a drum major in high school,” Steffani said. 

Steffani’s dream came true this year as she was named one of the five drum majors at UNL. 

One of the main differences of marching band at the college level is the difference in size. The Cornhusker Marching Band has approximately six times the number of people in the Bulldog Marching Band. 

“You automatically gain 300 new friends when you join a marching band,” Steffani said. 

Other than the size of the band, there is also the intensity of practice and camp. 

“I remember thinking band camp in high school was hard and it was just five hours of the morning. Now it’s 13 hours for band camp for an entire week,” McGahan said. 

In spite of these differences, many similarities occur. 

“Most of everything that I learned in high school directly transferred over like the 8 to 5 stuff and what everything is called on the field, but the style is a bit different though,” he added. 

At UNK, not only are there six people in the marching band, Jakob Gutschenritter, Steven Koehn, Sims (also in marching band) and Roeder (also in marching band) are in UNK’s audition-only wind ensemble. 

One piece of advice is unanimous, however, across the bands; and that is to give college marching band a thought, regardless of your capabilities. 

“Go for it. Give it your best and put your best foot forward,” Carlson said.