The Biggest, Reddest, Ugliest Tuba Section in the Ivy League
We've been dancin' in the streets, parading through dormitories, and droppin' burritos on enemy fields since the beginning, and we do it all with unmatched style, grace, and class. You may occasionally pause to be impressed with the rest of the band too, but when it comes to rocking out harder, shaking your butt lower, and blocking traffic spicier, no one in the world does it better than us... except Chuck Norris. Maybe.
Who We Are and What We Do
The tuba section is a motley group. Known for being rebelious while getting the job done right at the same time, we maintain a sense of autonomy and independence while still being respected by the band and sociable with the other sections. The head manager and drum major often don't know what to do with us. We're the only section that will steal their megaphone and run off with it in the middle of rehearsal, and yet we're often the only section to learn our drill and get it right when we first get it. In general, we know to be responsible when it counts, but as for the rest of the time, who knows what we'll be doing.
Our antics include everything from playing football with our horns to steeling the opposing team's flag to duct taping the head manager to a goal post. One minute we'll be playing our death chant to demoralize the enemy, and the next minute we'll be handing out the chocolate chip cookies we baked the night before. We have a plethora of traditions that give our section character, and we're always coming up with more and more each year.
To learn about the members, we welcome you to visit the Members page, or check out our myspace profile. If you care to flip through our handbook, you can get a brief overview of most of the main operating procedures and traditions of the section as of a year or two ago. If you have an inquiry about anything or are interested in joining the section, don't hesitate to contact the section liaison. For potential members, we've provided some more information about being part of the marching band below.
General Information About The Big Red Marching Band
First and foremost, it's a marching band. Unlinke the other Ivy bands, we don't scatter to and from formations; we march. That being said, it's not an ultra traditional drum corp either. We use ranks instead of individual positions, and we're not real sticklers about rolling your feet and sucking your gut in. Instead, we strive to find a nice balance between looking/sounding decent and having a good time. Furthermore, we are a student run organization. We follow a constitution that was adopted by the members and alumni, and we occasionally update it in a democratic process. Almost all band leaders are elected (with the exception of section leaders), and the only non-student leaders are the music advisor and the athletics advisor. The music advisor will occasionally show up to help at rehearsals, and the athletics advisor will occasionally show up to remind us to properly represent Cornell in all that we do. The band is also entirely voluntary. Members show up to rehearsals and games to have fun with fellow marchers and play music. If a tough exam is coming up or if home beckons for a weekend, it's no big deal if a member misses a game or a rehearsal. Things work out best when everyone is there though, and the more effort we put into it, the more we get out of the experience. It's an incredible amount of fun, a good way to meet a ton of new friends, and a unique embodiment of the spirit and traditions of Cornell.
The marching band is not at all competitive, both to get in and as a member. Auditions serve to prove that we can actually play our instruments (or perhaps even just look respectable holding it), and once a member, there are no challenges or cuts since a) we don't have a chair system and b) we always let everyone march.
The marching band provides sousaphones for all tuba players. We rehearse and perform on the days below.
The marching band plays at Cornell football games, an occasional NFL or CFL game, and at concerts it puts on itself. Music at any other Cornell sport is performed by the Big Red Pep Band. For information on the pep band, or for further information about the marching band, please visit their websites via the links below.