Marching 100 To Perform At Opening Game

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By: Lanetra Bennett
August 15, 2013

Tallahassee, FL - The FAMU Marching 100 band will be back on the field on September 1st.

"We will take the field in Orlando without any reservation." Says, Band Director Dr. Sylvester Young.

Dr. Young announced Thursday that the Marching 100 will perform at FAMU's first football game.

Thursday was only the band's fourth official day of practice since its year suspension was lifted in June.

Freshman Andre Russell says, "Honestly, we still have a lot of work to do, but, I know we will be ready. I'm positive. I have faith in my fellow bandmates that we will be ready for this first game."

Band members are excited. Russell, a tuba player, also says, "I'm proud to be a part of the rebuilding stages of this band and just do my best to make everybody before me and who will come after me proud of what we do here."

Community members are excited as well. FAMU supporter Leila Walker says, "I'm very elated to have the Marching 100 back."

There are some people have questioned the decision to have the first performance back in the same city where drum major Robert Champion died in a hazing ritual in 2011.

The Anti-Hazing Assistant to the President, Bryan Smith, says, "Nothing is 100 percent when you're dealing with individuals. But, I know should anything occur that we have the proper judicial affairs and code of conduct procedures in place to handle such situations."

Dr. Young says there are currently 126 eligible students. He says the band may not be bigger, but, it will be better.
The compliance officer says there an additional 100 or so students are waiting to be cleared to participate.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida A&M University (FAMU) director of marching and pep bands Sylvester Young announced today that the Marching “100” will perform during the halftime show at the MEAC/SWAC Challenge presented by Disney in Orlando Sept. 1, 2013 and at other games during the football season.

According to Young, the band will have fewer members than in the past, as a result of the new, more rigorous guidelines for participation. He also reinforced that the group will be equally dynamic and fully represent the great tradition of the Marching “100.”

“We have made a thorough assessment of the students who have auditioned for the band and firmly believe that we are ready to return and positively represent Florida A&M University and its proud students, faculty, alumni and community," added Young, director of marching and pep bands. “We embark on this season reflective of the circumstances that led to the band’s suspension and are optimistic that this is a new day for the band and the university. Our goal is to support the mission of the university and use this program to recruit top scholars and elevate the stature of the university.”

In June, FAMU Interim President Larry Robinson announced that he would lift the suspension, but would leave it up to Young to determine when the band was ready to perform. Young’s announcement today comes 21 months after the band was suspended as a result of a hazing incident in Orlando.
“We fully support Dr. Young’s decision,” said Robinson. “As the Marching “100” returns to the field, we believe that it will be a model of excellence for other bands in the country as we focus on its founding principles of character, academics, leadership, marching and service.”
Since the Orlando incident, the university has
 created a comprehensive anti-hazing plan in which it has:

o Revised the BOT Anti-Hazing policy;
o Revised the Student Code of Conduct procedures;
o Implemented enhanced procedures for reporting and investigating hazing allegations;
o Launched a new anti-hazing website,;
o Awarded funding to FAMU faculty and students for research on hazing prevention;
o Created two unique positions to provide a comprehensive approach to implement the anti-hazing initiatives, hired a special assistant to the President for anti-hazing, and a music compliance officer — to make sure that all music department ensembles including the band meet all standards to be eligible to perform.
o Scheduled campus training and forums and anti-hazing sessions.
o Enhanced the membership intake process for clubs and organizations; and
o Revised the organizational structure of the Department of Music and hired a new Director of Marching and Pep Bands.

In addition to the steps taken in regards to hazing, in May of this year, the university also launched an anti-hazing tour conceived by band students featuring the Music Department ensembles. This group reached out to students in three counties in South Florida.

The new criteria being used to determine who can participate in the Marching Band ensemble is as follows:

o Must have a 2.0 or better cumulative G.P.A.
o Must have earned 24 cumulative credit hours during the last academic year (i.e., Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Summer 2013)
o Based on the Admit Term, the student should have earned the following minimum cumulative credit hours at the end of each academic year:
o Fall 2012 24 credit hours
o Fall 2011 48 credit hours
o Fall 2010 72 credit hours
o Fall 2009 96 credit hours

Students are only allowed to participate in the Marching Band ensemble for four Fall semesters.

By: Lanetra Bennett

FAMU's Marching 100 will play at the opening football game of the season in Orlando. That's according to Band Director Sylvester Young. He made that announcement at a morning press conference. On September 1st, the Rattlers will take on Mississippi Valley State in Orlando at the MEAC-SWAC Challenge. The Marching 100 will also take to the field.

Associated Press Release

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida A&M University is going to announce the date of the return of the Marching 100.

FAMU lifted the suspension of the famed band earlier this summer. But school officials are waiting until Thursday to announce the date of the first performance of the reconstituted band.

There are signs that the band may make its comeback at the opening football game of the season being held in Orlando. There are already advertisements promising a "Battle of the Bands" during halftime of the game between FAMU and Mississippi Valley State.

Interim President Larry Robinson lifted The Marching 100 suspension in June. The band was suspended in November 2011 following the hazing-related death of Robert Champion, who was from Decatur, Ga.

Since Champion's death the school has enacted anti-hazing policies and put in restrictions on band membership.

Press Release: FAMU

What: Florida A&M University (FAMU) Director of Marching and Pep Bands Sylvester Young will announce the first performance date for the Marching “100.”

When: Thursday, August 15 at 10 a.m.

Where: FAMU Recreational Field (On Wahnish Way between Orange and Osceola)

Who: Dr. Sylvester Young, FAMU director of marching and pep bands Dr. Larry Robinson, FAMU interim president

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