'The Buzz' Blog
All the buzz about the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching and Basketball Bands.
- By Northwestern Bands
August 29, 2014 — EVANSTON, ILL. — They toss their maces into the air, squinting against the sun. In perfect form, Drum Majors Elisabeth Sladek '16 and Emily Liquin '16 catch the heavy bits of spinning metal and march on.
They, along with the rest of the Northwestern University 'Wildcat' Marching Band, are putting the final touches on tomorrow's debut performance of the fall 2014 season.
"Doing the backbend in front of that many people is going to be pretty nerve-wracking though," says Liquin, who was appointed to the podium in April. Saturday will be her first full field performance.
- By Northwestern Bands
May 23, 2014 — EVANSTON, ILL. — Chicago's premier thoroughbred facility, Arlington International Racecourse, will turn purple and white for the fourth-consecutive year to celebrate Northwestern Day on Sunday, June 1. The event, beginning at 11:15 a.m., will recognize the academics, athletics and pride of Chicago's Big Ten Team with unique and special events for fans of all ages.
While world class horses and their jockeys speed around the Arlington Park track, several of Northwestern's top coaches will be on hand to meet-and-greet with fans throughout race day. The Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching Band, WildPride and Willie the Wildcat will also be at the park for special performances and photo opportunities.
The sixth race on Sunday's card has been designated the Northwestern Cup. The approximate post time for that race will be 3:30 p.m., while the first race of the day will go off at 1 p.m.
"This is a really fun event that features lots of purple and NU coaches in attendance,” says Northwestern University Director of Althetic Bands Daniel J. Farris.
April 28, 2014 — EVANSTON, ILL. — "High school marching bands are invited to participate in two events we will host again next fall," says Daniel J. Farris, director of athletic bands at Northwestern University.
"High School Band Day is a mass band event that will be held during the halftime of the Northwestern/Northern Illinois football game" on Sat., Sept. 6, says Farris. Participating high school bands will rehearse with the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching Band before taking the field with the Wildcats during halftime (if weather allows). Admission to the game is included for band members and personnel.
In recent years, around 1,000 students have performed together during the halftime show, which feature simple straight-line marching to a stationary block in Ryan Field. "This is a non-competitive event," says Farris.
High school bands are welcome to enjoy the remainder of the game or depart immediately after halftime.
Later in the fall at the Northwestern Homecoming Parade, "thousands of enthusiastic Northwestern fans line the parade route on Sheridan Road in Evanston," says Farris. The parade will step off at 6:30 p.m. on Fri., Oct. 17. Participating bands enjoy viewing an open rehearsal of NUMB at 4 p.m. before enjoying a group meal with other high school ensembles in the parade. All bands are invited to enjoy the 7:15 p.m. pep rally in Deering Meadow. This event features the Wildcat Band, WildPride, and other VIPs.
Bands should register promptly to participate in either High School Band Day or the Homecoming Parade. Detailed schedules, music information, and other logistical information will be mailed to high school band directors when their applications are received./p>
Questions about these events may be e-mailed to Farris, who may also be reached at 847-491-4751.
APRIL 18, 2014 — CHICAGO, ILL. — "We have been invited to perform the national anthem and a few other tunes at the 100th anniversary of the opening of Wrigley Field," says Daniel J. Farris, director of the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching Band.
The band and other dignataries including Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig and Dutchie Caray, widow of the the late legendary Harry Caray, will be on hand for the celebration on April 23. The Chicago Cubs will host the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 1.20 p.m. game, which comes exactly one century after Weeghman Park—now Wrigley Field—hosted baseball.
"After both starting lineups are announced, members of the Northwestern University marching band will take the field, which was customary for Opening Day and other special events during the ballpark's first two decades," writes MLB.com's Carrie Muskat.
"This is always a fun event and a great way to get fired up for next fall," says Daniel J. Farris, director of the Northwestern University "Wildcat" Marching Band, which will perform as the Wildcat football team practices on the field.
The Wildcat team will begin its practice at 10 a.m. and continue until about noon. Concession stands will be open during the event.