February 8, 2023 Local Stories in and Around St. Joseph, Illinois

Franzen finds freedom in music

Dakota Franzen is an inspiration.

Marching Band Director Chuck Hess said Franzen’s efforts to be the best he can be are an inspiration to all the band.

“His striving to ‘be excellent’ helps motivate others in the group every day,” Hess said.

Franzen said he was happy to be nominated for Fine Arts Student of the Month.

“Honestly it makes me very happy,” he said.

However, he said he also thought there were other students who should also be recognized.

Franzen is a member of the marching band’s percussion section which has undergone major changes during the marching band season.

Hess said Franzen took those changes in stride.

“Dakota has taken his new role in the band very seriously and has worked hard to overcome the challenges found in this year’s show,” Hess said.

Franzen said band is his favorite class and he hopes to participate in marching band in college. Franzen said he likes band because it allows self expression.

“I can freely express myself,” he said.

Franzen said the best part about participating in the fine arts at SJO is having a creative outlet.

“Being able to express myself and just have fun,” he said. “Plus the friends I make during all we do.”

Franzen said the most difficult part about participating in the fine arts is the pressure he puts on himself.

“Just striving to be the best I can for everyone else and myself,” he said.

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