Field Notes: February 18, 2008. 4:15 pm. Bus Trip, Bus #3: Drummer, Tuba, Fluegel Horn, Mellophone Bus. -I rode a different bus to a concert than I usually do. Usually I am on bus #1, all trumpet bus. Where people are generally more relaxed and keep to themselves. -I sat with the tubas and drummers, who are much more interactive. - while trumpets generally do homework on the bus, the tubas and drummers generally tend to interact, listen to music, practice and, in a way, ?haze? their freshmen. - many band ranks and sections try to get to know their freshmen by making them, or suggesting they introduce themselves to the bus on the microphone, or tell jokes, or write limericks about band-related activities, or people. -freshmen are the main target for entertainment. It goes the same on the trumpet bus too. Perhaps this could be a rite of passage?? Interesting. - -the tubas and drummers tend to sit in the back of the bus, more or less intermixed with each other, sitting in some clicks. - I was located in the midst of drummers, near a few tubas. -types of activities they had the freshmen, or new folks do were: - write limericks - have rap battles against other freshmen - recopy the set list that Mike hands out on the bus. An upperclassman drummer writes all over it, and a freshmen from each section (one bass drummer, a cymbal player, a snare, etc,) all have to make a ?photocopy? of it onto a new set list. I actually volunteered to make a photocopy to see what it was like to have to ?photocopy?. They said I was better than their freshmen. - the games/ activities were mostly organized by upperclassmen, (juniors and seniors) tubas and drummers. - most of this activity was going on in the back of the bus, not including the occasional limerick, or some interesting joke that people would tell at the microphone, located in the front of the bus. -games- relays with fruit down the aisles. - interesting: the upperclassmen didn?t hesitate to participate in the games. When I asked why they still play games such as ?butt fruit?, [ where you are timed with a piece of fruit, apple or banana, stuck in between your rear end cheeks, and have to walk up and down the isle, overcoming obstacles without dropping it ], Ben mentions, ?Its fun. Someone has to show the freshmen that we don?t mean any harm and we?re all just trying to have a little fun.? -when we returned on the bus, the food leftover from the concert included a platter of cheese. The tubas must make it a tradition for their freshmen to obtain as much food as possible. Because this cheese belonged to them and they were fairly protective of it. -overall a very interesting bus ride. Gave me new perspective to other sections and bus personalities of the band. I enjoyed it, and even got some cheese out of the deal. ( Field Notes: Wednesday, February 27, 2008. 3:30-5:30. Humanities Building. -arrived at practice around 3:15. practice runs from 3:30 -5:30. -there are people buzzing about, getting chairs and stands for practice. -people sit in rows, by section, by rank. They also tend to sit the same places each week, in a general sense. (see diagram) - class starts with announcements by Leckrone, events for the week, concerts for the week. [routine] -gave out tickets for the sports events for the week to follow. The band is responsible for playing at basketball games and other sporting events. For very important games, or popular games, the whole band cannot attend, there isn?t room. So Leckrone uses a ticketing system, based on seniority. -run through concert music pieces that were problematic during the previous week?s performances. -sometimes just talk through the problems, sometimes play through them. (ie): king tut song: worked out singing piece of the song, new harmonies, practiced them. Leckrone played on the piano, we hummed the pitches and tried out the new harmonies. This is a part where we sing in the show, just a snippet of a song. Its entertaining for the audience, because we are a band not a choir, and I find it quite humorous. -Director: Mike Leckrone has extreme control over the band. He will yell out his frustrations if people don?t comply or don?t listen while he is speaking / directing. -listening was a large point of today?s rehearsal. -people aren?t taking responsibility for their actions . (not signing up for events on time, such as women?s or men?s basketball events or other events that we, as band members need to sign up for on our own. ) -upperclassmen have a tendency to push smaller tasks off onto other people, most likely ?freshmen?. Such as putting chairs away, or having them sign them up for attendance, or other sign ups. Sometimes they just expect it out of them. Rite of passage perhaps? -ranks tend to wear similar clothing, some members have shirts made for events , like bowl trips, other road trips, fun events/ games, etc. seem to be sitting in tight knit groups. (ranks) -most often these have hysterical puns, or unique sayings specific to the rank. - ie: in my rank, rank 22: rank ?tu ? tu? - rank eleven: ?leckrone?s eleven?, like ocean?s eleven - rank 2 clarinets: in reference to last year?s capital one bowl game: ?what?s in your wallet? (with a 2 dollar bill) - rank 1, trumpets shirt said: ?capital ONE bowl? Many others? -trombones extend out into the hall, these boys are usually a bit rowdier/ louder. -tuba section has more people than actually tubas, so some must sit down and rest while the ones that are playing stand and practice. I noticed the ones that were resting do homework or talk; sometimes it is distracting. - practice ends at 5: 30. -freshmen and other helpful soles stay around to clean up the chairs and stands -other people who have problems, etc stay and talk to Mike about problems/ events /issues. Field Notes: March 5, 2008. General Information: UW Marching Band -the band consists of over 300 members -as of the 2007 marching year instrument breakdown consists of: Clarinet: 15. (14 female, 1 male) Saxophone: 24 (9 female, 16 male) Trumpet: 140 (59 female, 81 male) Fluegel Horn: 8 (2 female, 6 male) Mellophone: 14 (9 female, 5 male) Trombone: 67 (24 female, 43 male) Euphonium: 11 (2 female, 9 male) Sousaphone: 21 (4 female, 17 male) Percussion: 27 (5 female, 22 male) -males outnumber females in the band in most sections. -overall: 128 females, 200 males . 328 total members. -there are 1.5 males/ female. -the band is broken down, by instrument, into ?ranks? of, at least 8 members, and up to possibly 14. -there are 8 positions available/ rank, so some members of ranks are alternates, or half spots. A half spot is where the member marches only Pregame or only Halftime. Full spots march both Pregame and Halftime shows. -the band is a university organization involved in events such as sporting events, pep ralleys, parades, concerts etc. -fall: football on Saturdays, concert before at union south, then a pregame show, then halftime show, playing pep band songs in between during time-outs, followed by a 5th quarter show. -spring: much more lax, - pep band for hockey and basketball games, and ?run-out? concerts at high schools, on average once/week, Sundays or other weeknights. -these concerts are anywhere from 1-5 hours away, driving, on coach buses. -we do a one and a half hour concert with tunes we used during the marching season, as well as classic songs that everyone who is a badger fan knows and is familiar with, such as: ?Varsity?, ?If You Want to be a Badger?, ?On Wisconsin? ?Hot Time?, ?You?ve Said it All? -we go to many different high schools, many hometowns of current members of the band. typically, members will go to the trips that are closest to home, in order to see their families or friends from their hometowns. -members do not have to attend every single game or concert, but they have a certain quota to fulfill, and can pick and choose which fit their schedules or which cities / games they prefer. Field Notes: Wednesday, March 12, 2008. Rehearsal. Humanities Building. 3: 30 -5: 30 -after observing 2 weeks, I noticed more routine and ritual activities. (ie): setting up chairs, where particular ranks sit, announcements followed by rehearsing songs, etc. -although the band is still doing run-out concerts, the theme of this rehearsal was the major concert in the Kohl Center, coming up in April. -the band has guest artists and other important figures featured, and the band must do many accompaniments. We received these songs and ran through them and recorded them for Mike and the featured artists? purposes, hardly practicing the older songs that we?ve been doing all semester. -They must be sounding better if we did not have to run through them again. -Mike was sure to mention that they are sounding good, but we can always improve, we just have so much other new songs to do and learn that we don?t have time to do the older ones. -many members of my rank, and others mentioned that he practice was repetitive and long-seeming. Hannah mentions, ?the accompaniments are so long and repetitive, why do we have to run through them four times?? -you could also see in other members? body language they were tired of practicing the same songs over and over, despite the fact they were new to them.
Want to see the other 5 page(s) in experiement?JOIN TODAY FOR FREE!