Pep Band pumps up the volume at football games


Na Hoku staff photo

Eian Mizukami (center) and Jazlynn Degala stand to perform with the school’s pep band.

Jameson Huang, staff writer

After a two-year hiatus, Pep Band performed at its first football game against Damien Aug. 20. The bright music might have played a factor in the 16-7 victory. For many band members, this was their first time ever playing in Pep Band.

The atmosphere before playing their music was one of excitement, especially among the rookies. Being the first year in marching band, junior Ariyanna Padelo said that she was excited to “hype up” the crowd and “bring back the feelings to football games.” 

Pep Band is a part of the marching band program. The band plays at all of Moanalua’s football home games. Pep Band plays pieces to help get the crowd into spirit and encourage Moanalua’s team. One of them in particular, the “Fight Song,” is a crowd favorite. Music Director Elden Seta wrote lyrics to accompany the University of Wisconsin’s fight song, “On Wisconsin” for the Moanalua version.

Todd Oshima is the band director in charge of the pep band. This season, being the first year back since Covid, is really focused on getting the band back out there and having fun. Along with the cheerleaders and the crowd, the pep band is an integral part of encouragement and school spirit on the field.

“I’m excited for homecoming and I’m excited to get the spirit back and providing the atmosphere for the rest of the audience,” Oshima said. 

His favorite song that the band is playing is “Runaway Baby” by Bruno Mars.

The marching band member’s reactions after the performance were greatly positive.

“It was really fun and exciting,” clarinetist Eian Mizukami said. “It brought me enjoyment to be playing along with my friends and supporting the team.”

Mizukami said the interactions with the cheerleaders and the response from the crowd “was so uplifting” and created a “nice environment.”

Senior Rylan Ganeko plays the tuba in the marching band and although he had fun, he felt a sense of relief after it was all over.

“When it was my freshman year, I was able to rely on all the upperclassmen who had already played pep band music before,” Ganeko said. “But now [the performance] is reliant on the senior class to help everyone who has not had an experience with pep band before.” 

Ganeko said he looks forward to playing the rest of the season in pep band, especially for the homecoming game scheduled for tomorrow.