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Tulane University Barry Spanier

  • UpClose: Barry Spanier

    Mike Lawson | August 14, 2007

    From a Vision to a Band

    From a seed to a sapling, and a sapling to a tree. A strong music program begins with a vision. This idea must be articulated and nurtured, so it can lay roots and extend. As the environment takes notice of the positive nature of this aim - the power of unity and determination, the exhilaration of performance - it gains in strength, numbers and support.

    The vision at Tulane University was sown by students. In 2003, after 30 years without a marching ensemble, a student-run pep band decided to march for homecoming, with support from the few emeritus alumni who recalled a Tulane marching band long extinct. The enthusiasm of this student group inspired administration to bring in a music director who could rekindle Tulane's dormant marching tradition.

    Enter Barry Spanier, a man who has fielded marching bands across two Olympic games, a World Expo, and rebuilt the NYU Orchestra. In a recent SBO interview, Barry spoke of the progression leading up to his current position as Tulane's director of bands and the challenges and joys of sowing musical seeds.

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