Ascension PS

GATA DATA Issue 4 Fall 2023

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ST. AMANT HIGH SCHOOL 12035 HIGHWAY 431, ST. AMANT, LA 70774 SEPTEMBER 2023 The STA band looks to continue success BY: MARIA MELLAD AND MADELYN LONG Gata Data Reporters The Gata Data Both the St. Amant Band and Colorguard are starting a new season and are ready for their new year. Last year the color guard team won first place at showcase, and the band took home third with their show "Reflections". In both performances there was a theme of Reflection. Senior, Saxophone section leader, Katie Williamson described last year's theme as "Taking a look back and understanding yourself and fully embracing who you are." This year, they will have their first new performance in three years. Senior Clarinet Section Leader Cadence Cagnolatti stated that the band had continued with the same show for three years because they had "to stop rehearsal because of COVID," and other factors throughout the years such as Hurricane Ida. She continued "So this year it is a completely new show, which is something our senior class has never done." Band director Joseph Nassar further elaborates with the statement, "I think that coming out of the covid stuff, it showed me what kind of students we have. They just never gave up, even when it was so difficult to do what we were able to do." When Nassar was asked about his expectations and goals for this year, he stated, "We would love to be in the finals again for our state contest, and place as high as possible. Our colorguard was champions in The Gators continued their dominance on the football field on Friday, September 9 with a 41-14 win over the visiting B.T. Washington Lions. Senior running back Kyron Craft opened the scoring just over three minutes their classification last year, and we would certainly like to see that tradition go on."Many people see the color guard members bringing school spirit to the football games but color guard is more than what is presented on friday nights. Junior, color guard co-captain, Madelyn Long described color guard as "A sport which includes flags, rifles, and other props. During marching season, the colorguard works alongside the band to add a visual effect to the marching show." Even with their impressive win at last year's showcase there are still a few things they as a whole are working on to continue their success. Senior co-captain, Juliana Melancon states "With the motivation that most of the new members have to become champions again, I think that we can make it happen." As a section leader, Meloncon describes that she is "making sure that everyone can do the work to the best of their abilities and putting their all into everything that we do." The STA band would not be where they are today without their endless rehearsals and practices. The band and color guard practice not only everyday during school but they have additional after school practices at least three times a week. "We work really hard," stated Williamson. When asked to describe the average band practice this semester Williamson stated "We are in 100 degree weather and we are playing instruments, you have to know what count your on, you got to know what step your on, you gotta know how many counts a movement is, you have to know when STAFF PHOTO BY MARIA MELLAD The STA Band plays a stand tune while Senior Drum Major Elijah Elliot conducts in front of them. your playing, if you are playing you and listen to the track and listen to the have to then watch the drum majors, metronome, you have to watch all the people around you to make sure your doing stuff. It's a very overwhelming experience, and most people don't realize just how overwhelming it is." This experience is something that many other teams, and groups can relate to. Gators continue winning streak over visiting Lions BY: ELIZABETH LANGSTON Gata Data Reporter into the first quarter after an impressive 40-yard run to give the Gators an early 7-0 lead. "Craft really cleaned up his game from the first week. He ran very hard and I was pleased with All of this hard work will hopefully assist the band in placing as high as possible at Showcase. PHOTO BY BRIANNE DECOTEAU, YEARBOOK STAFF Kyron," says Coach David Oliver. Kraft netted 82 yards on the ground and totaled three touchdowns, all of which came in the first half. Over a minute into the second quarter, the B.T.W Lions finally Showcase is a competition where the best bands in the state compete against each other. The winners of Showcase gain recognition, bragging rights, a band award and a trophy. The band directors begin planning the show towards the end of the year prior. When their summer band camp comes around the band directors tend to be at least 60-70% positive on the direction of the show. SEE BAND ON PAGE 3 earned their first touchdown. This did not deter the Gators from asserting their dominance. Just three minutes later, Craft once again scored on a 2-yard run giving the Gators a 21-6 lead at the half. With the help of senior quarterback Chase Kelley, junior Connor Darr caught the Gators' fourth touchdown, earning the Gators a 22-point lead to open the second half. The Gator defense continued their impressive outing well into the second half, which was a focus in practice this week. "We felt like we played a a complete game more than we did at the Jamboree or said. The Scrimmage, Oliver Lions could I only muster a mere eight additional points through the back half of the game. The Gators dominance in all phases of the game has helped lead the team to a 2-0 start on the season. Three minutes into the fourth quarter junior running back Tyree Willams ran in another touchdown for the Gators, followed by another score from senior running back Myles Dennis just four minutes later. The Gators continued their winning streak as victors with a 27-point win over the Lions. The Gators have a challenge this week, however, as they face the visiting 7th-ranked John F. Kennedy, who have built an impressive winning streak of their own (42-0 win over L.W. Higgins; 20-7 win over Terrebonne).

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Page 2 GNN back in action BY AGUSTINA BUSTOS Gata Gata Reporter Gator Nation News (GNN) returns to its daily morning broadcast for students at St. Amant High School. After taking their summer break off, the GNN students are back in action and have begun the process of gathering STA's daily updates. GNN has welcomed new members to their crew, such as juniors Jacob Angel, Aubrey Beale, Briley Brooks, Eddie Delhaye, Claire Clouatre, Ali Mccormick, Mary Mcadams and seniors Tyrus Dunham, Carlyle Runfalo, Ian Turner, Ja'lyn Braud, Kaitlyn Ross, Ja'kya Thomas and Ashtyn Weathersby. In GNN, students gather the school's upcoming and daily information, advance their presentation skills, learn how to use new equipment, such as cameras, lighting and microphones, apply writing and speaking techniques along with gaining video-editing skills. Randon Gilmore, teacher of the broadcasting class, says that students do not need any editing or camera experience to join. Gilmore states, "I am looking for students that are driven, involved with the school and passionate." Senior Tyrus Dunham, a member of GNN, says, "Having a voice and being loud enough are important qualities to have if you're planning on taking this class."The GNN crew plans to meet a variety of goals this school year. Gilmore is looking to keep the quality of their videos consistent to allow students to keep a positive view of the GNN brand. Gilmore says, "I am looking to expand the content that we're creating and bring in an audience that we haven't tapped into yet." Almost every day, members of the St. Amant Choirs are hard at work learning music to perform for multiple occasions. All of this is led by choir director Sara Bray who has been working with the program for eight years. Throughout these years she has seen many hardships such as the flood of 2016 and The Covid-19 Pandemic in 2020. Last semester, she led her choirs to winning Double Sweepstakes at the Louisiana Music and Education Association (LMEA) Choral Festival. www Currently, Bray along with the Choir program looks onward to the 2023-2024 School Year. Bray notes her enthusiasm for welcoming newcomers to the program every year. She disclosed, "I love getting to meet new students." She especially enjoys seeing freshmen join the program. Bray says, "Welcoming them into St. Amant, it's just such a fun environment to be in." Many students at St.Amant concurred with her statement. Choir President, senoir Grayce Reynolds stated, "I am most excited to help those around me who have the same interests as me, and basically just get to know a whole new group of people because I can just tell it's going to be a great year already." Because of the positive environment the choir creates, many of the members can be seen spreading that positivity onto others. Due to the members' word of mouth, the program has grown since the last semester. "I would say the program Extinc WIL YOGA Ga 3rd block GNN staff poses in front of the infamous table used to film their daily videos on August 29. Dunham says, "The class is very fun. I have gained a lot of friendships with other seniors and juniors." He applauds how the class allows for every student to be their own leader, and how diverse personality his classmates are. When asked about the importance of GNN, Gilmore says, "I think GNN is important because it's a unique opportunity to engage the students and celebrate all the cool things that are happening in St. Amant." If you have any questions has grown 150%." Bray stated. When asked what she thinks is the catalyst as to why students are attracted to the Fine Arts Programs at STA, she responded that it was due to the immense passion and dedication of the teachers. "I think students don't always realize that in these elective classes, these teachers are specialized in the skills that they are learning," says Bray. She then went on to say that because these teachers are so skilled in their crafts, they are able to pass their passion to the students. She added, "We don't come here just to teach, this is our passion that we are lucky enough to pass on to people. Fine arts, according to Bray, can also help in developing key skills that are not the subject matter of the class, such as working as a team. For example, the choir often performs music that is in different languages and can highlight different cultures. This year, the choir has some new experiences planned. On September 18, 2023, the choirs are going to the LSU Choral Festival. There, they will perform with 350 other students at the invite only event, and will also work with the directors at LSU, along with the choir director from Georgia State. "It's really going to give the students that honor choir experience, even if they don't have that opportunity to get into the district Honor Choirs or All State choirs, so I love how we're able to provide every singer with that kind of experience, says Bray. Along with that, in March Choir Program combines fun, family and heart BY: MICHAEL MUMPHREY Gata Data Reporter 2024 a handful of students from the Choir department will be headed to New York City. After being submitted for an audition by Bray, they have been selected to perform as part of the National Honor Choir at Carnegie Hall. "I'm thrilled that we can provide this opportunity, and they will get to work with Dr. André Thomas, who is one of the best conductors in the world." Although it is Bray who finds these opportunities, she says that it is the students and their hard work that lets her know that they are ready and deserving for such experiences. Through their opportunities to perform on big stages, it encourages choir members to bond together and create a familial environment. "There are some things that you have to do that are just dependent on you and your individual work. In choir, it impacts everybody. So if we aren't working together to be better every day, we're really not going to achieve a lot as a class," Bray explained. "That kind of environment fosters this familial community where it's like, 'Hey, we have to work together,' and with that comes creating connections, talking to each other, supporting each other and encouraging each other." September 2023 Staff Photo by Agustina Bustos Bray does many activities to kindle these feelings, such as semesterly Choir Retreat. At these retreats, all choirs get to come together and mesh and mingle through games and activities regarding the course, you can email Randon Gilmore at facilitated by the choir officers. The students are able to work and grow together through these retreats. Bray discussed her joy in seeing students develop in this way by stating, "It is amazing to see them] grow as a singer, because obviously I want them to get better and better. How blessed am I that I get to hear about their journey and be a part of it. It's one of the main reasons I love my job.' When questioned about any advice she has for students wanting to join choir, she stated that they should be open to finding new opportunities and be willing to try new things. Bray explained, "You never know what you're going to find your heart in, so when taking a fine arts elective, really explore the options, and I hope you'll join choir." If you would like to contact Ms. Bray about joining in on the experiences, contact her via email, but she recommends checking out the choir instagram page, @stamanthighchoir. She also recommends that you talk to any of the members, who would be more than willing to help you with joining the program.

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Page 3 Thursday September 21st, 2023 Come celebrate with us Hispanic Heritage Month Hosted by St Amant Student Council 4:00pm to 9:00pm at Mexican Grill Rio Verde 14210 Airline Hwy Suite J, Gonzales, LA 70737 Please mention that you are with STA StuCo when checking in Good food, good music, good people Ascension Parish School Board recognizes Constitution Week BY HANNAH ROGILLIO Gata Data Reporter We the People The Ascension Parish School Board has passed a resolution recognizing September 17 as the 236th anniversary of the signing of the Constitution and is encouraging all district schools to celebrate Constitution Week. Constitution Week would be a great opportunity to instill a class constitution. Students should be encouraged to build a constitution in their classroom since it introduces aspects of responsibility and respect. Constitutions should start with the rights that teachers and students want or need in the MEXICAN work and play. Then it should be shifted to responsibilities, like what the students can do to make sure the constitution is honored. The constitution exercise is meant to practice problem-solving, so once you complete your constitution have your class sign it and instill it in your daily routines. -Rio Verde- September 2023 Student Council celebrates Freshman Week BAND CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 BY XYAN DOBARD Gata Data Reporter The St. Amant High School Student Council hosted a Freshman Week to help engage students as they transition into high school. Many activities took place throughout the week such as scavenger hunts that students played for gift cards and candy. The following day students were taken outside to interact with each other, as well as talk about the different opportunities that St. Amant offers to get involved. After Freshman Week, the freshmen, who were candidates to be class officers, were able to observe how the upperclassmen Student Council representatives prepared and became engaged with the student body. Nassar states, "When we start our band camp, we are 60-70% knowing what we are going to do, but the show just keeps evolving and changing. The design process is ongoing until the very end." Showcase tends to be not only one of the most stressful times of the year but also one of the most fun and memorable. When asked about her goals as drum major, Maggie Lobell stated "I'm looking forward to hopefully getting first place. We have been working so hard toward it and I'm really hoping the momentum is amounting to something." Mellophone Section Leader Riley Harris says, "I'm just really excited to just see how our show goes this year, and being able to compare it to last year and seeing how everyone improved." This years theme is "Into Thin Air' and it's based on the book by John Krakauer, where he writes about the journey up Mount Everest, and the lives lost along the journey. So the music is designed to convey that image of climbing Everest. And the visual design of the show is a mountain theme. The big push is for us to be able to convey this idea musically and visually on the field." An equally important and impressive section of the band is the St. Amant Wind Symphony. The STA Wind Symphony has been regarded as one of the best in the state. This year "We are playing at Carnegie Hall... We get to play in one of the most important and nationally recognized band buildings," exclaimed first chair, baritone and saxophone Katie Williamson. Throughout the years the STA Wind Symphony has been chosen to represent the state. "We have the best concert band in the state, some people argue with that but, the numbers prove it," she continued. High St. Amant School STA STUDENT COUNC When asked about the advice they would give new band members the general consensus was to try to have fun with it, and try to grow as much as you can in the four years you are with the St. Amant Band. "Four years in an organization like this flies by. As a freshman, you feel like you can never measure up to the standard that we have set here, but you are going to set the standard for the future." said Nassar. Nassar continued "It's about making memories and friends and working together, sometimes through adversity, the heat, the weather, and everything that we endure, and we come together at the end." The band, all sections, has greatly improved throughout the years and with their continued determination it is highly likely that they will continue with their great success.

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