WGI Sport of the Arts provides a venue for young people to achieve the extraordinary through performance and competition and is committed to supporting these young people as they seek higher education. Since its inception, the WGI Scholarship Program has provided more than $500,000 to WGI performers. The following is the experience 2013 scholarship recipient, Christine Hutchison, has had because of color guard.
To put it simply, the biggest change I’ve seen because of my color guard career has come from being a member of Zydeco World. Ever since I began marching there in 2012 I’ve learned so much, both color guard related as well as qualities to apply in my academic and work life. Every day either at school, work, color guard, anything, we get told what we did wrong, and to fix it—corrections. What I love about Zydeco is that this is also true there. When you’re wrong, they tell you. However, what has really struck me with them is that the staff and members genuinely believe in me and everyone involved. There is no fear of going to rehearsal and being wrong. It’s almost a feeling you can’t explain to people. Knowing someone stands behind you, trusting you, believing in you, depending on you is an amazing feeling. Because of this, I feel like it makes me want to work harder, perform more, do more for this organization that has given me so much. . No matter what I have them backing me up, and that makes me strive to do more every time. When I know that I’ve got people supporting me and believing in me, I start believing in myself. I feel like this is so hard to find in the world today—a group of people that will stand behind you in every decision you make, and no matter what they are there for you.
Zydeco has helped me become a much more confident performer. We tend to put on shows that affect not only the audience, but ourselves. Each show I’ve been involved with through this program is equally applicable to my life experiences. They teach us not just how to dance, but how to enjoy dance. How to be effected by it and to affect others as if no words can be spoken but the only translation is through choreography. And to be honest, I used to hate dance until I started marching with Zydeco. They taught me a different style and a different approach. Giving me confidence that I didn’t have to be the most flexible or have the most skills to be a great dancer, because I don’t. Dance is hard for me, being flexible is hard for my body type, not in any means unachievable, but it doesn’t come as naturally for me as it does to others. Being involved with this organization I’ve started letting my anxiety and frustrations with dance fade away.
I owe a lot to Zydeco—the staff and members each season have taught me more than just new flag and dance skills. But how to love what I do and that it’s possible to inspire people. Color guard in general, every place I’ve ever marched, the people I have marched with, the staff that has taught me will be the reason I succeed in life in whatever I do; knowing that I have people behind me believing in me, cheering me, giving me the confidence and courage to follow my heart. I only hope to inspire and teach others the way Zydeco has done for me. Here’s to life and here’s to you.
If you are interested in donating to the WGI Scholarship Fund, please send your donation to:
WGI Scholarship Donation,
2405 Crosspointe Drive
Dayton, OH 45342
Or you can donate online here.