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The Windsor Chronicle

The Windsor Chronicle

Kjersten Johnson
Gabby Overholt (12) plays the timpani at the Veteran’s Day Assembly on Nov. 10, 2023. Overholt has been a part of percussion since the fourth grade and plans on continuing that passion through college, hopefully making a career out of it.

Senior embodies the drive of arts students

Gabby Overholt (12) culminates her high school experience, looks to the future

To use one’s talents to strive for both excellence and joy in their endeavors. This is something that is hard to achieve; it takes the maturity to realize that if something is wanted, it takes the drive to work at it — something Gabby Overholt (12) has achieved in her many musical endeavors.

“She always spends her time practicing and really acts like she’s a graduate student at the college level in terms of her ability to practice on her own and get something out of practicing,” Everett Shryock, WHS instrumental director, said.

Shryock has known Overholt over the past two years when he started out as a visual tech for marching band and then this year, as the new instrumental head. He described Overholt as an admirable student in her constant accountability and dependability.

“Gabby has been a really self-sufficient person; she knows what she wants to do, and she does it, and I just keep track of turning in her auditions and whatnot,” Shryock stated.

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In addition to being accountable in school, Overholt has also been in the position of setting a standard for her siblings and being there for them.

“I look up to her physically, because she’s taller, and also, when I was little, she first joined percussion ensemble in fourth grade, when I didn’t have a sport or an activity that I was into. I just kind of saw it as my way in when she did something and I saw that it was okay and it was going to be comfortable for me because if I had questions or if I was scared, I could always go to her. That’s how I got into music as well,” Chloe Overholt (10), Gabby’s younger sister, said.

Chloe Overholt (10) and Gabby Overholt (12) play drums during marching band class. Chloe initially started percussion because she knew that since her sister was a part of the program, she could seek help from her. (Lauren Huntsman)

Chloe is proud of where her sister is going; she said she has loved watching as Gabby’s passion for music has grown and as she has started to make a career out of it. Chloe explained that she will miss having her sister around because even though they do not see each other much, Gabby has always been there for her.

“When she goes to college, I’ll know that when I have a rough day and it’s, like, three in the morning, I won’t have the security of hearing her comfort… or… the security of hearing her play the marimba in the basement, and knowing I am not the only one awake. Or when I go through a hard time, like, knowing I can’t go home to my sister, have somebody to always talk to, someone I can always gossip over text, someone who will buy me Dutch Bros when I am having a bad day.”

If I had questions or if I was scared, I could always go to her. That’s how I got into music as well.

— Chloe Overholt (10)

A passion for something can take a long time to find — a lifetime even — and just like anyone, Gabby had other passions before she joined the marching band and truly found her passion for percussion.

Gabby explained her previous passions: “I played volleyball for a couple of years and I really enjoyed that and got a little bit into the recruiting process for college… Then when I started playing in the marching band… I kind of realized that I enjoyed doing that more than anything. And so, I decided to quit volleyball, which was a really tough process, but I think it was worth it in the end.”

As well as being in the school marching band, Gabby has gone to many honor bands, including Honor Band of America and All State Band. She is also a percussionist in the Denver Youth Artist Orchestra (DYAO) and was one of the percussionists in the pit for this year’s musical (“9 to 5”), as well as the school’s previous musicals (“Chicago” and “Little Shop of Horrors”).

Not only is Gabby a part of many orchestral and percussion ensembles, but she also has acted in a couple of the WHS productions, including her role this school year as Detective Carter in “The Play that Goes Wrong.”

Gabby Overholt (12) plays Detective Carter in the 2023-24 school production of “The Play that Goes Wrong.” Overholt was also involved in marching band and the pit for the musical “9 to 5.” (Kylie Farris)

Gabby has had so many incredible experiences that have left her with the experience level of an adult, which has led others to seek her out for help, as well as starting to teach her own private lessons.

“I would like to thank all of my band directors… past, present and, I guess, future, going into college, I want to thank them too… Then my family of course, and my friends who kind of just, like, support me through all my stuff and listen to me talk about percussion, even though they don’t understand it,” Gabby said.

As this is Gabby’s senior year, of course there is a lot to think about, and she has plans for going off to a four-year college, before hopefully going to Juilliard for her graduate degree. With her passion, skill and talent, Gabby has proven herself capable of accomplishing whatever she sets her mind to.

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Oliver Lodato
Oliver Lodato, Co-Editor
Oliver Lodato is a sophomore who is hoping to develop his writing, interviewing skills and leadership (as co-editor) in his pursuit to be a journalist. In the future he hopes to pursue musical composition and performance.
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