Benefits of playing an instrument

by BRYSON VIERA
Staff Writer

As time progressively goes by, we all have a dream or even a reality that involves playing an instrument. By playing an instrument, I mean being able to shred on guitar or even lay down an insane flute solo. People who play an instrument or have always wanted to have this vision inside of them, and the benefits to these thoughts and actually playing one are sufficient to the mind.
From the ukulele to the saxophone, each individual instrument has its’ own purpose and sound that makes it incredibly unique in character. I myself play the ukulele, bass guitar, and acoustic guitar. The sound of my ukulele soothes my mind after a hard day of school or even when I’m in in a bad mood. This is one benefit of playing an instrument that I feel is spiritual; being able to escape reality and focus on your song that you work hard at getting just right or playing without mistake.
Let’s face it, when you just start out playing any instrument, you’re no Tommy Emmanuel on guitar or Kenny G on the sax. It takes time and patience while being a novice. This teaches an individual who plays music patience and coordination, which is a huge characteristic that one needs to have in the world around them. Without these traits, one will give up playing guitar after a few weeks or even after a few hours of trying to learn a new song. Perhaps giving up on an instrument can alter how somebody responds to a harsh work environment or even in a social environment too. If you give up, you’ll get nowhere!
I’m not a professional at the instruments I play, but I know that I’ve come a long way in my musical career. The expert at anything was a beginner at one point, which relates to the famous quote “practice makes perfect.” This statement is true! If you work at something long enough, you’ll end up achieving what you want. One of the most important benefits that anyone can learn while playing or learning to play an instrument is perseverance. Without perseverance, artists wouldn’t be artists. Without tenacity, music just wouldn’t be music. The benefits of playing an instrument are so immense that some can never fathom the effects that they have on the human mind and spirit. So for all of you readers out there who either know how to riff or to those who are barely learning chords, keep on playing music, and do it with passion.

El Diamante Seniors: Cheerleaders

by MEGAN “KARL” MOORE
Staff Writer

Sara Benedetta
17 years
Position: Back spot

Sara Benedetta has been interested in cheer since she first saw her cousin cheering when she was younger. Her favorite part about cheering this year is the chance she gets at stunting with her group. “I love having a crowd reaction,” she says over the phone. Sara is a natural at what she does, when we asked her if it was hard to get on varsity she replied  “no, not really.” This year, her favorite memory of being on the team is the many times she was able to bond with her team. Cheering not only helped her learn better communication skills, but also helped her grow into the person she is today. Sara plans to continue cheering after high school and we all wish her the best of luck as continues on her way.

Jackie Santana
17 years
Position: Flyer

When Jackie Santana first tried out for cheerleading she did not expect that should would stay on the team. “It’s kind of funny actually,” she told us, “my friends convinced me to try out but I didn’t want to. Then they decided they didn’t like it. They left and I stayed,” she laughed. It took Jackie a lot of hard work and practice to get on varsity, but once she did it was worth it. Her favorite part about cheering this year is how close and hardworking everyone on the team is and how they work together to get the crowds reaction. Her favorite memory is when her friends cradled her and she farted. “They always tease me about it when we go to perform,” she mused, “They always say ‘don’t fart’ before they throw me in the air.” Cheering helped her break out of her shell, teach her dedication, and allow her to get close to her closest team mate, Miranda. If she could change anything about cheer at El Diamante, she would make her sport be recognized. She also wants people to appreciate how much hard work her and her friends have put into their routines and allow them to compete.

Cortney Roope
18 years
Position: Back spot

Cortney’s favorite part about cheering this year is how everyone on her team is a family. “I always wanted to secretly be a cheerleader,” she revealed, “even though I thought they were stuck up. I love the uniforms.” Cortney said it was hard for her to get on varsity, she was on JV for three years until there was room on the other team. When we asked her who her favorite person on the team was she said “no one. I love everyone on the team, like, I could sit down with anyone of them and have a conversation and be perfectly happy.” Her favorite memory about cheering this year was when she and her team went to camp. “Camp was the most fun. We bonded in our haunted hotel floor.” she laughed. We asked her to explain more about her hotel room. “Other cheer teams were saying that there was a girl who died on our hotel floor. They kept carrying on the story and it kind of freaked us out,” she continued. Cheering helped Cortney become less shy and more peppy. She wants to continue cheering after high school but it depends on the college she goes to. “Cheering is more complicated when you go to college,” she explained. Besides wanting the chance to go to competitions, there is nothing that Cortney would change about cheer at El D. She loves her coach and her team mates and will be keeping touch with them as she continues her cheer adventures.

Miranda O’Canto
17 years
Position: Main base

Miranda was inspired to join cheer by her dance classes and her cousin when she was just 5 years old. Her favorite part of this year was the chances she had to be recognized. “Being a senior, there is moments that you are recognized by yourself,” she said, “but when you’re in cheer you are always together.” Her favorite part about cheering is the dance and the stunts. When we asked if it was hard to get on Varsity she said “yes and no. It’s hard because you don’t always know what they are expecting. You just have to do your best and think positively.” Her favorite memories about cheering this year are all the times her and her team bonded after their hard practices and performances. “We’re a family,” she said.  Her favorite person on the team is Jackie Santana because she makes her want to be wild and crazy while still being herself. Cheering taught her several things such as how to work with others, how to become a better person, and how to be more outgoing. There is a possibility that she will cheer after high school, but she is not positive because of how different cheering in college is. If she could change anything about El D’s cheer squad she would make cheer more of a deal to everyone and allow the team to join competitions.

Adriana Gomez
17 years
Main Base

Adriana became interested in cheer when she reached 8th grade and tried out with her friends Amanda Valadez. Her favorite part about cheer is how the team becomes a family, the team bonding nights, and performing. When we asked her if it was hard to get on varsity she replied “for me it was because I was so nervous during try outs.” Her closes friends on the team are Itze Vasquez And Jade Archeletta. Her favorite memory was from junior year. “Our stunt group accomplished a kick full down with Daisy Garcia,” she told us proudly.  Cheering helped Adriana become a better person and come out of her shell. “I have grown a lot and learned a lot,” she told us. Adriana is sadly not going to be continuing cheer when she goes off to college; however her memories and experiences will still follow her every where she goes.

Itze Vasquez
18 years
Position: Base

When Itze was a sophomore one of her friends encouraged her to try out for cheer and she stuck with it ever since. “My favorite part about cheer is how the whole team becomes one and gets along as a family,” she said. Her favorite part about cheering this year was performing at the games and rallies for all of her class mates to see and cheer her on. When we asked Itze if it was hard to get on varsity she said, “it was hard for me because I has never done cheer in my life until my sophomore year.” Her favorite memory about cheering is when her and her team went to cheer camp on the 10th floor of a hotel that was “haunted”. Over the last year Itze became closest to Adriana Gomez and Jade Archuletta. Cheering helped her make new friends and become a more out going person. Unfortunately, Itze is not going to continue cheer after high school; however, we still wish her luck on her journey.

Good luck to all El Diamante Cheer Seniors, we will miss you and we thank you for all the hard work and time you have put into your routines for us. We hope your future is bright and that we will see you again soon.