The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Marching to the musıc

City College student and pit technician Nancy Hamaker works with McClatchy High School marching band. Kate Paloy | [email protected]

You’re always caught by surprise when a Chihuahua sends a Rottweiler running away and whining with its tail between its legs.

Nancy Hamaker does this on a daily basis.

“Get over it, and do some work!” she barks at her students. One student towers over her by a good foot, but he stays attuned to everything she says as if his life depended on it.

Hamaker watches over her 10 students who make up the front ensemble of the C.K. McClatchy High School Marching Band, as they plunk away carefully on their percussion instruments. For almost seven years, Hamaker has been involved with a front ensemble, or more casually “the pit,” of a music program. Hamaker teaches students who are eager and willing to learn the art of mallet instruments, such as the xylophone, marimba, vibraphone and chimes.

“I really like to affect people,” Hamaker says. “It’s always kind of been a thing.”

At 21 years old, Hamaker has already taught at three high schools around the Sacramento area as a pit technician. In addition to teaching at McClatchy High School, she teaches at Cosumnes Oaks High School in Elk Grove and the combined ensemble of Galt High School and Liberty Ranch High School in Galt. Even though she teaches high school students, Hamaker is still a student herself. She balances teaching three high schools while taking general education classes at City College.

“It’s hard to get everything done I want to,” she says chuckling. “It’s hard to excel at each thing.”

Hamaker started playing the vibraphone and the bells at the Visual and Performing Arts Charter School of Sacramento in 2005 and continued on at McClatchy. She furthered her musical career when she started marching with the Sacramento Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps in 2010.

“I’m a freak!” Hamaker says, then smiles. “I like getting my butt kicked. Drum corps pushes your expectations of yourself.”

Hamaker in turn expects a lot out of her students.
But if you’re older, there are fewer purchase cheap viagra risks. Apart from this, nuts intake is help to prevent excessive vaginal discharge which come into existence by fungal, bacterial or even protozoal infections and balanced combination prevents white discharge and menstrual problems and help to maintain good health. cost of viagra pills It helps to viagra mastercard prevent aging process in males, from reputed online stores in the denomination of 60, 180, 120 and 240 capsules. If the friends cheapest cialis are intelligent, chances of getting valuable suggestions from them are pretty high.
“She tends to hold fairly high expectations for her students,” says Marcelino Nambo, a senior at McClatchy and the drum set player for the pit. “She has this, ‘If I can put in as much effort as I can, then there’s no reason why you can’t do the same’ mentality.”

Hamaker stands in front of her students on a recent dark and cloudy evening, keeping the attention of all 10 musicians.

“Make sure that you’re representing all of your work,” she says, standing at 5 feet, 2 inches. Her students watch as she lectures animatedly about the importance of performing, her long, brown hair following her erratic movements. “Quit being embarrassed!”

A third-year student of Hamaker’s, Emmon Tobias, listens to her directions attentively. The 6-foot-1-inch boy follows her instructions precisely, enough to be used as an example to other students.

“She allows us to reach our full potential,” Tobias says. “She can be mean, but does it because she expects the best.”

“When you start, it’s easy to think you’re doing well,” Hamaker says. “Looking back, it should have been harder.”

Hamaker ultimately plans on becoming a music teacher. However, with local budget cuts to music and other extra curricular activities, that dream seems to be quite a stretch.

“It makes me angry,” she says, blue eyes flashing. “I don’t understand why you would take away something from a child or
teenager that’s so emotionally supporting and defining of character.”

But budget cuts aren’t going to stop Hamaker. She vows to continue to teach music for as long as she can.

“The ability that music has to change outlook and form connections is astounding,” she says.

Donate to The Express

Your donation will support the student journalists of Sacramento City College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Express