University of Minnesota Marching Band

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Minnesota Marching Band
MinnesotaGoldenGophers.png
School University of Minnesota
Location Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN
Conference Big Ten
Founded 1892
Director Dr. Timothy Diem
Members 320
Fight song "Minnesota Rouser"
Uniform Maroon pants and jacket, white and gold overlays, gold wings, white hats, gloves and spats, black shoes
Website https://music.umn.edu/ensembles/marching

The University of Minnesota Marching Band (also known as UMMB, The Pride of Minnesota[1]) is the marching band of the University of Minnesota. The band performs before, during, and after all home Golden Gopher football games and bowl games, numerous pepfests[2] and events associated with the University of Minnesota, as well as a series of indoor concerts at the end of the regular football season.[2] Members of the band also participate in smaller athletic pep bands that perform at other major sporting events.[3]

The Pride of Minnesota gathers on the field after 4th quarter for their post-game performance.

History[edit]

The University of Minnesota Marching Band was founded in 1892 as the University Cadet Band.

The Minnesota Marching Band was formed with 29 members as the University Cadet Band in 1892.

The band performed its first field show in 1910. Among the formations included was the "Block M" that now serves as the University's logo. The "Block M" formation is still present in the band's pregame show.

In 1961, marching band director Dr. Frank Bencriscutto decided that, in addition to performing at football games, the band should also put on an indoor concert at which the band would be the sole performers, instead of taking a role secondary to that of the football team. This was the first concert of its kind; many other collegiate marching bands have adopted this practice since. The Indoor Concert has been continuously performed at the University of Minnesota's Northrop Auditorium since its creation.

Women in the Band[edit]

When it was originally formed, the band consisted of exclusively males. Women were first allowed to perform with the band in 1943-1945, when they were allowed to "fill in" for male members of the band that were serving in World War II. In 1950, a "Women's division" of the band was created, which lasted for several years. Women were finally allowed to be full members of the band in 1972. Molly Watters was selected in 2006 as the first female Drum Major in the history of the band.

Marching Style[edit]

The marching band practices in El Paso, Texas before the 1999 Sun Bowl.

The Minnesota Marching Band primarily uses the traditional "chair step" for performances, similar to other bands of the Big Ten Conference. The band's pregame show is performed almost entirely with this type of step. It consists of bringing the leg up so that the thigh is parallel to the ground and the shin is completely vertical and toes are pointed at the ground. The band is the only Big 10 marching band to do this chair step throughout the majority of pregame.

Parade marching is performed using a modified chair step known as "parade chair," which is far less tiring than a traditional chair step. It is similar to the chair step, but the thigh only comes up 45 degrees instead of the full 90.

Halftime shows are performed using a corps-style low step marching that allows for more musicality and forms that do not necessarily conform to a grid.

"Run-Cadence" is the band's method of getting on and off the field for a show. It is essentially a double-time chair step, although the quickness of it necessitates that at times neither foot is in contact with the ground, as with the regular chair step.

Pregame Show[edit]

The Minnesota Marching band performs one of the longest and most complex pregame shows of any band in the country. In its entirety, it is over 15 minutes long and includes over 75 pages of drill. Periodically throughout the season, band members audition for a spot in the pregame block. There are 243 marching spots in the pregame block.

The pregame show in its current configuration consists of the following:

  • Drumline and Tubas enter the field to the "Er Du Klar?" cadence
  • Run-Cadence on to the field in entry lines.
  • Expand the lines into a block formation to "Fanfare '87"
  • March down the field to John Philip Sousa's "Minnesota March"
  • Spell out "GOPHERS" while playing "Go Gopher Victory"
  • Return to block during "Big Ten Drip" cadence.
  • Play the opposing team's school song. This is removed if the opposing school sends a band with the team. (Big Ten Opponents only)
  • Return to block during "Big Ten Drip" cadence.
  • Play "Battle Hymn of the Republic" while performing the "Swinging Gates" formation.
  • "Post Nasal Drip" followed by "Cascade" into the compressed "Block M" formation.
  • Expand into the "Block M" formation while playing "Fanfare '78-Pageant"
  • Play the "Rouser."
  • Rotate the "Block M" formation toward the student section to "Funk G".
  • March the "Block M" downfield while playing "Our Minnesota"
  • "Post Nasal Drip" followed by "Goldy's Groove" Cadence into the "Gauntlet" formation.
  • Play a modified version of the theme from "Superman" while Goldy Gopher runs onto the field.
  • Play the "Rouser" as the football team runs onto the field.
  • Play the "Star Spangled Banner" from this block. The C.A.F. (Ceremonial American Flag) is unrolled during the National Anthem.
  • Run-Cadence off of the field.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Minnesota Marching Band". University of Minnesota Music Department. Retrieved 2007-10-12. 
  2. ^ a b "2007 Schedule". University of Minnesota Music Department. 
  3. ^ "Athletic Pep Bands". University of Minnesota Music Department. 

External links[edit]