Citrus Valley drum major Arupa Adhikary exemplifies class


Citrus Valley High School has an acronym that illustrates what kind of student a Blackhawk should be. The acronym, CLASS,  stands for: Character, Leadership, Attitude, Scholarship, and Service. While most students adhere to this code of honor there are always some students who demonstrate how to be CLASSy in a way that exceeds expectations. A senior at CVHS, Arupa Adhikary is one of those students.

Question: What are some of the things you are involved with on and off campus?
Answer:“I am Drum Major of the Black and Gold Brigade, attend the International School of Ballet, and have been the President of Spanish Club for two years. I’ve played flute for 8 years , am a member of Wind Ensemble, and have danced ballet for 14 yrs. I am Co-Founder and Vice President of the UNICEF Club here at CV, Executive Social Chair of NHS, involved in Science Club, Key club,  and CSF member. As for my achievements in terms of academia, I am in the top 2 percent of the graduating class of 2017, and was selected to attended the Rotary Youth Leadership Conference earlier this year. Outside of regular school, I attend the Aptak School of Music to learn traditional music and instruments such as the Harmonium, to perform at religious festivals . Since I practice Hinduism, I also set aside time to do  community service at my temple.”

Q: Why did you start playing the flute?
A: “I’ve always been interested in learning about things I don’t  know how to do, so when given the opportunity, I took up flute in the fourth grade. The fact that I always liked performing, was also a factor. It makes me happy to be on stage”

Q: How have your leadership positions in band benefited you?
A:“I became involved in leadership because I was dedicated to the program. My second year I was one of two sophomore leaders. Leadership has made me take on a lot of responsibility, ownership, learn about time management, and has allowed me to be more selfless in a way. Such as dedicating time outside of mandatory band activities to improving the program for example.”

Q: How does it feel to be on the podium instead of marching this season?
A:“Performing at championships last year and realizing that it might be my last time marching, (since I had been hoping to be drum major since then) was sad. Despite this, it’s an honor to lead dedicated musicians on that podium, give advice (even if it doesn’t pertain to band) and have people look up to me.”

Q: You mentioned you danced ballet for 14 years, do you want to do it professionally?
A: “I appreciate ballet because after so many years, the exercise has become a stress reliever, and a way to wind down. I want to do it as a hobby, but ultimately I’d  like to be an engineer (which I know is strange since I am heavily involved in the arts). I know they’re on the opposite side of the spectrum, but they’re both about integrity, hard work, efficiency and dedication.”

Q: A lot of people don’t realize how much work a marching band puts in to create the final product. How about you run us through a typical Black and Gold Brigade Practice?
A:“Everyone meets at the field for a warm up lap, stretches,and across the floors. Those are exercises where we practice marching techniques at different tempos which takes upper body and core strength.Physical fitness is important, so Mr. Meiners will also have us do football warmups sometimes. Next we run through musical warm ups and begin learning sets for our field show. Marching may look easy but you are physically and mentally exerting yourself by memorizing a musical piece, thinking about step sizes, how fast how slow to go, and where you will be in relation to others throughout the entire show. You and the rest of the band have to think and act as one body. I think anyone who hasn’t seen us perform should. We work as hard as any other program on campus. ​

​Q:What inspired you to help start a UNICEF Club?
“ UNICEF stands for United Nations International Children’s Fund. It is important to me     because my entire life my parents loved to travel and have stressed the importance of learning through experience. I have traveled abroad and seen real poverty, and it doesn’t compare to America. When I was 10, I was at a temple in India with my parents. I saw a young girl struggle while carrying her younger brother on her back. Even though we were the same age, she seemed so much older since she had to grow up so fast to take care of her brother by herself. I believe every child should have a chance to be a kid and not worry about where their next meal is coming from and about education. Even though I am a kid, I believe everyone can make a difference through the smallest of means. That’s why I decided to start this club with my friends. 

Q:To wrap things up, explain the concept of the field show and inform people of dates the band is competing.
A:“ The theme this year is Twilight Zone. The show is set in the 1920-1930s era and features sights and sounds of pop tv series The Twilight Zone. The BGB is are going to kick off the competitive season with local high schools Preview of Champions at Redlands High School this Saturday. Our first actual competition is October 8th. We receive scores at the scsboa competition. If we get high scores, we will compete in championships in November like we did last year. Catch us at every home game at halftime.

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