We’re getting the band back together!
It’s that glorious time of year when a cruise past Elbel Field delivers the ultimate Wolverine playlist. Yes, it’s true. The Michigan Marching Band has taken the field once again. Enjoy these images, provided by Isabel Jasperse, digital communications manager for the MMB.
After a year in virtual purgatory, members of the Michigan Marching Band have put Zoom behind them for the moment. The only thing better than seeing their gear strewn across the grass is hearing that metronome as John Pasquale puts them through their paces. Pasquale is director of the Michigan Marching and Athletic Bands.
Groovin’ on Hoover
The history of the Michigan Marching Band began in the fall of 1896 when 17-year-old Harry dePont of Ann Arbor invited all musicians on campus to attend a meeting for the purpose of organizing a band for the University. In fall 2021, the streets are alive — Hoover Street at least — with the rhythmic stylings of the MMB’s talented drummers.
So happy together
The MMB technically is a performing arts course offered within the U-M School of Music, Theatre & Dance. The band comprises 400 members from all levels and majors.
Baaaaaaand, pay attention!
Carl Grapentine (with his back to the camera) has been “The Voice of the Michigan Band” since 1970 when he was appointed to the post by Dr. William D. Revelli. An alumnus of the School of Music, Theatre & Dance, Grapentine visited MMB practice in August to inspire the 2021 lineup. He played oboe in the Symphony Band and Symphony Orchestra, and was baritone soloist with the Men’s Glee Club during his student years.
Outdoor rehearsals are open to the public at Elbel Field, located at the corner of South Division and Hill St., Monday-Thursday from 4:45-6:15 pm. Here, members of the drum section sneak in a little practice outside Revelli Hall.
Can we play?
During home games, every student in the MMB performs during the game day rehearsal, parade to the stadium, performance in the stands, and postgame performance. Then, 235 students perform during pregame and 276 students perform during halftime. All students perform during the annual Homecoming halftime show. Which of the kids in this crew will be joining them one day?
The U-M Band gave its first public performance in 1897 at old University Hall for the Law School’s annual observance of Washington’s birthday. The first appearance on a football field was in the fall of 1898. The first appearance of these socks came in 2021.
Teamwork makes the dream work
Michigan’s Swimming and Diving Coach Mike Bottom attended a recent MMB practice in Michigan Stadium. He’s pictured here with the band’s director, John Pasquale, after inspiring the musicians with a pep talk about teamwork.
Wave it high
The MMB’s flag section describes itself as a tight-knit family of people who thrive on positive energy. Four rank leaders and one section leader make up the student leaders of the flag section.
The beat goes on
An aspiring member of the drumline visualizes his future from the sidewalk near Elbel Field. There are 38 members in the drumline today.
Camaraderie is key
After a recent Saturday rehearsal, generous donor Gail Stout provided members of the MMB with snow cones in honor of her husband, John. John’s last wish was to have an ice cream truck interrupt rehearsal because “it’s always time for fun!” True that.