Colorado Mesa University to begin marching band program
Citing increased academic opportunities and a way to have more fun at sporting events, Colorado Mesa University officials announced Tuesday the school is forming a marching band.
The university plans to spend the rest of the year recruiting students for the band, with the hope the marching band will perform field shows, march in parades and play at tailgating parties by fall 2013.
This fall, the marching band will play — but not perform — at football games. The band also may march in parades, said Calvin Hofer, head of the CMU music department.
Although the uniforms have not officially been designed, and a full-time music instructor has not been hired, officials said Tuesday the time is right for the growing university to add the program.
A search for a full-time faculty member to help with the band will begin soon, Hofer said.
“I think it’s an exciting thing for the community and university,” CMU President Tim Foster said during Tuesday’s announcement in front of dozens of students who play in CMU’s pep band. Several members of the CMU Athletic Department also were on hand.
Among the music students who played at Tuesday’s news conference was Sarah Wagner, 19, a freshman from Longmont. Wagner spent four years on the Skyline High School marching band and expects to join CMU’s program.
“It’s definitely a big deal to us” students and to the athletic teams, she said.
Besides creating an atmosphere for athletes and spectators, it adds an important incentive to attend CMU, she added. Wagner said she knows several people who did not enroll at the university because it lacked a marching band.
Consequently, a marching band program is an important recruiting tool for the university, Hofer said.
The CMU marching band will be open to all students regardless of major.