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Four Bison Brigade Members Selected for Virtual Performance with Intercollegiate Marching Band

January 7, 2021

Four members of OBU’s Bison Brigade marching band have been selected to perform with the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA) Intercollegiate Marching Band. College marching ensembles from across the nation will collaborate in a virtual performance, showcasing their talents and commitment to the performing arts. The students will join nearly 1,500 performers from 200 bands in 45 states and Puerto Rico, all working together to produce a virtual college marching band show.

The OBU students include Caleb Griffin, snare drum; Micah Hinson, drum major; Katie Krempl, trumpet; and Tommy Peercy, horn.

Teresa Purcell-Giles, director of bands at OBU, is thrilled for this opportunity for her students.

“Despite the challenges presented by COVID-19, our students in the band at OBU have persisted in their dedication to performing instrumental music on our campus and beyond. The students in the Bison Brigade had a successful season, fielding a marching show and performing several times on our campus and around the community. The chance for select students to carry on the marching arts in the midst of the pandemic through performing as part of the Intercollegiate Marching Band and to represent OBU on a national platform is tremendous, and I’m so proud of Caleb, Micah, Katie and Tommy for their commitment to instrumental music and the marching arts.” 

The Intercollegiate Marching Band will perform “End of Time” by Beyonce in a video that will premiere online on the Intercollegiate Marching Band YouTube channel during halftime of the College Football Playoff National Championship Game Jan. 11, 2021. It will also play on the video board in the stadium during halftime.

“This is going to be a historical performance,” says Dr. Mark Spede, president of CBDNA and the director of bands at Clemson University. “In this unusual year when bands have been unable to perform their traditional pregame and halftime shows during college football games, CBDNA is pleased to offer this opportunity with the help of its partners.”

The performance will showcase all of the unique aspects of a college halftime show including musicians, drum majors, color guard members, dancers and majorettes. Composer Scott Boerma, director of bands at Western Michigan University and past arranger for the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps, and Chuck Ricotta, percussion instructor and arranger for the University of Michigan, created the arrangement for “End of Time.”

The performance was created using a program called Our Virtual Ensemble. Participants used the program to practice their music and routines as well as to submit individual videos. GPG Music, a publisher of marching band, indoor percussion and concert band music, launched Our Virtual Ensemble in spring 2020 as a direct response to stay-at-home orders due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The robust plug-and-play system creates opportunities for performing arts ensembles that may not be performing regularly or even meeting in person at all.

The Bison Brigade has been entertaining crowds and supporting athletics on OBU’s campus since its inception in 2013. The ensemble seeks to share God’s truth and beauty through music-making and marching, supporting the university’s student athletes and building community on the campus and beyond. The Brigade performs at OBU’s home football games, at a variety of events on OBU’s campus and in the Shawnee community.

The Bison Brigade represents students from Oklahoma, Texas, Florida, Missouri and Colorado. Members of the Brigade are enrolled in 18 academic majors across OBU’s campus, and hold an average GPA of 3.5. Ten students in the Brigade are members the OBU Honors Program.