Marching band isn’t for the weak-willed or unprepared. It takes stamina, coordination and practice, practice, practice. And UC Berkeley’s Cal Band, which just kicked off its 2015 season, is no exception.
“If we didn’t know the music like the back of our hand,” says Ross Greer, the band’s senior student director, “by the time we’re doing a show, there’s no way we could keep up with trying to march, trying to play.”
Practice has already begun for the group, with nearly 100 new recruits joining for a total of some 230 band members. Their first performance is right around the corner — Sept. 5 is Cal’s first football game of the season against Grambling State — and the band plans to come out with a bang with a show called “Guardians of the Calaxy,” featuring favorites from the better-known movie’s soundtrack, like “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” and “Hooked on a Feeling.”
This year, the band has a special trip planned. In May, students will pack up their gear and head to Asia for a tour of China and Japan. “It’s been on my bucket list a long time,” says band director Bob Calonico. (In 2003, the band had to cancel a trip to Asia in the midst of the SARS epidemic.)
To listen to the band play “Fight for California” and to read the full story, go to Berkeley News.
Learn more about the Cal Band on its website.