Q&A with Bela Gomez (10)


Bela Gomez (10) plays her marimba during a marching band practice. She is new to this school but not to band.

Brenna Sealy

   Q: Where are you from?

   A: “[I am from] Lake Worth, Florida.”


   Q: Why did you move up here?

   A: “[I moved up here because of] my dad’s job. He works in Chicago.”

   Q: Have you ever lived here before?
   A: “Yeah, I was born in Elkhart, Indiana.”


   Q: Is this school any different than your other one?
   A: “Totally. The campus [of Lake Central] is enormous and such little kids for such a big campus. [There are] very different social cultures. It was more hispanic culture [in Florida]; here it’s a more mellow, neutral culture. It’s completely different. Everyday, everybody had the same lunch. Lunch was all at one time, but you [were able] to eat outside in the courtyard [or] in classrooms [or] in the band hall. It was more of a band based school than anything else. This is an academic school whereas everybody went to my school for band. Teachers there were mostly women. I had one guy teacher, and then he got fired. There’s more social cliques there. Here it’s like oh everybody knows everybody like a small town kind of thing whereas in Florida it wasn’t a small town. It was more ‘oh you’re you, I’ve never heard of you.’”

   Q: You mentioned band, so are you in the band?
   A: “Yes. This is my second year in marching band, I started freshman year I play outside marimba for the Lake Central Tribe of Pride. I want to go to school for music. I’ll hopefully either be [section leader] next year, get private lessons or drum corps.”

   Q: Has being in band helped the move?

   A: “Totally. I got in contact with these two people before I came and they introduced me to the people, the band, the area and when I came they were super welcoming and it was super nice.”

   Q: Is this your first time moving?
   A: “No. I was born in Elkhart, moved to Tennessee, then Kentucky, then Texas, then another part of Texas and Florida, and then back up here.”

   Q: What do you like and dislike most about this school?
   A: “I hate that people are so small minded. With Florida, people would go out of their mind crazy. At band, everybody was wack, we used to put tiny fingers on the top of our cymbals and paint their nails. It was so weird, but you were weird and you got accepted for that, now you’re here and it’s like you’re weird if you’re in band. You have to be normal and it really sucks that you’re confined to this little box when in Florida everyone accepted you for everything.”


   Q: What do you like the most?
   A: “Band, not even playing music, but I just love everybody in it and it’s going to suck when everybody graduates or leaves. It’s going to be different, but I love music and that’s what I love doing.”