in town for free camps
Was at the game last night. Tough loss, but a good showing against a good team, and a lot of reason to feel good about improvement over the course of the year.
Does anyone know if that was our pep band there? They looked super young (of course, that could be because I keep getting older). They also helped with a t-shirt promo that Barclay's ran during the game. And maybe it was just my ears, but their Victors did not sound like it was played by a band who has played it 25,000 times.
An update from a friend on the band's dress rehearsals with stadium amplification:
We've experimented with the sound amplification twice this week at stadium rehearsals. Unfortunately it's really hard to get a read on things without people in the stadium. Right now there's a significant delay between the actual sound and the amplified sound. It varies from minor to almost a beat late depending on where you are. It seems to be worse the lower you are in the stands for some reason, and it's also pretty bad anywhere on the east side. We'll have a better idea of things after the first game tomorrow.
I hope things go well; it'll be interesting to hear reports from stadiumgoers.
Haven't seen an article about this since the past summer, so I thought I'd put one up.
Gathered from responses throughout the year, the show selection was poorer than in years past. I fully agree. The Opera show was something I believed that should have never stepped foot into the Big House. Although it was one of our more (if not most) demanding shows, the audience doesn't really care.
Some simple guidelines before you post: We know the band needs to be louder. This is just a forum to see which songs are the most requested (like Ecstasy of Gold from the topic last summer, which I seriously hope happens). Also, no Boerma bashing, please. Make your own forum if you want to do that.
I know the shows that had the most positive feedback were 2008's Boy Bands show and the "Save Cody" show. This is the kind of stuff that belongs in the Big House: something that pumps up the crowd (as well as the band. We feed off of you guys too).
I encourage you guys to be as imaginative as possible. If you guys want the band to play the Star Wars opening fanfare while unveiling a giant "May the Forcier be with you" flag, say so.
Just thought I'd tell ya'all that the band is mic'ed up today. I'm in section 26 row 26 and can clearly see a single mic reaching up about 12 feet above the brick wall facing the band. There appears to be a black plastic trash bag under the mic. I'd assume that it's there to protect the equipment under the mic from rain but it could be there to dampen ambient sound. I don't know what under the mic that needs protection but that's my guess. Any other more informed ideas out there?
I'd take a picture with my phone and post it but I don't think I can upload images to anywhere on the internet with my phone, but I'll try to remember to do so later tonight at a computer.
I guess this just adds more fuel to the "band, please be louder" fire. We'll have to see how much they use it today (if at all). Of course, I apologize if this had already been announced and discussed but I don't remember seeing anything about it all week.
Edit: I'm posting this because I'm 99% sure that the band isn't normally mic'ed. If I'm wrong in that I apologize and feel free to ignore this thread.
On Aug 3, 2009
Dear Professors Haithcock and Boerma,
As a fellow musician and student at the University of Michigan, let me first
congratulate you on putting a product out in the U of M marching band year-in and year-out that is entertaining, classy, and above all else, skilled. However, something must be done about a glaring problem at the University of Michigan football games : the student section cannot hear much sound from the marching band as a whole, except for the mobile percussion. As a result, students are unable to appreciate the excellent and fun music that is being performed; they are also hindered from cheering as loudly and intimidating opposing teams on the football field.
Increased fan/band participation should be something that is striven towards as part of an integral "game-day experience", giving a two-fold effect: fans (and especially students) are much more able to appreciate the workmanship of the musicians, and by creating a louder, more intimidating atmosphere for opposing teams, the student athletes will benefit as well.
Please try anything possible to maximize our game-day experience.
Thanks for your note and the polished expression of your concerns. I will leave the details to Prof. Boerma going forward. In short, the situation you describe is due to the Athletic Department's decision regarding where to seat the band and the fact that each band student seat within the student section makes other seats available at a more expensive price. This is a recent move after more than a decade of the MMB sitting across the field from the student section.
You are not alone in your concern but understand that the band has limited options as electronic support of the sound is against NCAA rules. In that large space, acoustics can only do so much.
This is basically what everyone has hinted at, but I just thought I'd like to give some solid proof as to where things stand, right from the horse's mouth.