Wednesday, April 22, 2009

School Spirit

Someone recently told me that the University of Wisconsin Marching Band’s annual concert is something every Madisonian must see at least once. I took this advice to heart and attended the Spring Concert Friday night at the Kohl Center.

What a show! Really, extravaganza is the better word to describe the performance that kept the Badger-loving audience, clothed almost entirely in red, entertained for hours—and constantly wondering what they would be seeing next.

While a number of guest artists appeared throughout the night, the band itself was outstanding as well. They played a range of songs, from football-game favorites to hits from The Lion King and Jesus Christ Superstar. And a special performance by the percussionists, in which they battled drumming robots, was an exciting highlight.

But the showstopper, at least for me, was band director Mike Leckrone. Decked out in a sequined suit, the guy never stopped moving. Whether regaling the crowd with tales from his years heading the band or leading his student musicians through a song, it was hard not to watch him. And when all of a sudden he appeared above the crowd—swinging through the air suspended by two wires—it was absolutely impossible not to watch him.

Whether you’re a UW alum, Badger sports fan or simply want to be all-out entertained for a night, I’d recommend making a note on the April page of your 2010 calendar—you won’t want to miss this show the next time it comes around.

Photo courtesy of the UW Marching Band.

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