The History of Marching Band

You know, if I can survive marching band, I can survive anything. – Nellie McKay

What is marching band? By Google definition it is ‘is a group consisting of instrumental musicians performing outdoors for the purpose of entertainment, exercise, and sometimes in competition. Instrumentation typically includes brass, woodwinds, and percussion instruments.’. However what does that all mean? In a typical marching band, it contains brass, woodwinds, percussions, basses and string (guitar) instruments. Along with that it consists of dance moves, typically preformed on a field of some sort.
The original marching band is not what we think of today. It originally was a way for musicians during the ancient world to preform together at celebrations, such as festivals. After that it became well-known in armies. It was the military bands that would then shape the modern marching band that we see today. For it became increasingly popular in America through the militaries when they would come home for a bit.
The first university to hold a marching band would be in 1842. The school would be University of Notre Dame; which in fact would have their marching band before its very own football team. They would be the school that set the path way to the rest. In fact by the twentieth century almost all schools or universities would have its very own marching band. Later would come the first half time entertainment show on the football field. This would in 1907 by the University of Illinois.
After the half time show happened, the fight song would soon follow. Illinois, once again, stepped up to the plate to snatch the first university to have their very own fight song. From then on more things were added and even more schools got involved in this inspirational movement. Dance lines would be added, and so would the color guard. Then high schools, and secondary schools would as well get involved.
It was because of the marching band that so many other things started to play out for musicians, and even the future musicians. From the marching band, would come concert band as well as a more modern jazz band. This would also leave more open doors for majors and scholarships for primary, secondary, high schools and universities. This would also lead to a better cheering sections at games, which would then lead to the first cheerleaders.


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