The Spirit of the Bearkat Band

This is in response to “The Joke’s on us.” I am not a music major or a professor of music. I just love performing, whether it is in Killinger Auditorium or Bowers Stadium. I have been in band since my sixth grade year of middle school and I am now preparing to graduate with my bachelor’s of science this May.

First off, you have attacked the wrong people and believe me you have severely offended them as well. Because I know that I sure am, and you didn’t even attack my future career. Now if “bands are so convinced…that they are so important they don’t need to be at sporting events,” then why do 150 out of 250, of those that participate in the school of music in the band/ orchestral form, volunteer to be in the marching band every year? And why is it every year for at least the past four years, except for this one, students have volunteered to participate in the pep band? It is because we don’t think we are so important, we enjoy doing that, we have school spirit! The Bearkat Marching Band fully and actively participated in every home football game this year. In fact we had so much school spirit that the school decided to send us also to the Southwest Texas game, and to the game in Montana! At the game in Southwest Texas, Keith Davis(DB) and Jonathon Cooper(WR) came to thank the band personally after they won the game! Last year the pep band followed the basketball team to Louisiana during the playoffs. We do have school spirit!

Also, you say the main reason why bands exist is “to bring some entertainment and excitement to athletic events.” Then why does it seem like when the marching band tries to bring some “excitement” to the game at the half, the crowd disperses to the concession stand? Shining at a spring concert series is what most people consider the sole reason for the existence of the band. I truly enjoy performing at the football and basketball games, however there is nothing like performing a concert for those who appreciate the music and effort put behind it. Do you realize with out the band, there would be nothing for rock n’ roll to stem from? These parades that you speak of, do you realize 9 times out of 10, they are to support an athletic team? And even if they aren’t they are to support a community, last time I checked that wasn’t a bad thing.

Earlier I said you have attacked the wrong people, what I mean by that is, the non-existence of the pep band was not by our choice! I was really looking forward to participating this year, so when I was told at the beginning of the semester that it was not going to happen, I was upset. Student activities did not have the “school spirit” to give the money that is necessary to run the pep band. And yes it does cost money. Do your research, talk to other band programs, for example the Court Jesters at Texas Tech cost $15,000. This is not exactly pocket change.

Finally, I would just like to say that I love Sam Houston State University and everything it has to offer, musically, education wise, and even the athletic programs. Please note this however, the purpose of college is not solely based on athletics, but on getting an education. Music does provide an education as well as entertainment. I hope that you fully understand how much you have insulted your fellow Bearkats by telling them they have no school spirit by being in the band. When they are some of the most spirited people I have ever known on this campus!

Shauna Disler, Senior, Mathematics

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