PROFILE: Lakota Grad Keeps Bearcat Marching Band in Step
Date: Oct. 9, 2000
By: Erin Duffy, intern
With Homecoming right around the corner, the
UC Bearcat marching band schedule is in full swing preparing for
all the festivities the weekend has to offer. On tap for this
year's program is the annual parade and halftime show, a
performance by the Bearcat Alumni band and a special concert by
the marching band at Sigma Sigma Commons.
Front and center
leading the band will be Emily Ploetz, Head Field Director for
the Bearcat Marching Band.
Ploetz, a fourth year fine arts
education student from Lakota says that Homecoming is always an
exciting time for the band. Ploetz says of the big Homecoming
football game and weekend "It's nice to see the alumni come back,
and the students get more excited for this game." The band has
been practicing at least three times a week in preparation for
the big weekend. Plans for the Homecoming show alone have been in
the works for about a month.
As the band's Head Field
Director, Emily's in charge of not only the obvious duty of
leading the band on the field, but some behind-the-scenes jobs
For instance, Emily makes sure that each band member gets a
copy of the music being played which also includes keeping track
of and organizing the band s music library. She also does
scheduling for the band. And who settles quarrels within the
band? Emily, of course. "Many times the field commander is the
mediator to many arguments between sections or
How does one attain the position of Head Field
Director of the Bearcat Band? In Emily s case, she started with
the position of field commander two years ago. "There was an
audition which consisted of directing a small band, playing
ability, and an interview with the director." Before that, Emily
was involved in color guard and also played flute and piccolo,
two instruments she still plays for the band.
involved with music for many years before coming to UC. She says,
"I have been playing musical instruments since I was in the sixth
grade. The main reasons I chose UC were band and the art
education program at DAAP."
Not only is Emily instrumental in
the marching band, she is also involved in directing UC Bands in
the Winter and Spring quarters the pep and concert bands.
Anyone who attends UC basketball games is familiar with the pep
band that plays at those games. While the marching band does not
get to travel as often with sports teams, the pep band goes on
many road trips with the basketball teams. During basketball
games, it's Emily's job to choose the songs, know when the band
is and is not allowed to play, warm the band up, make sure the
band reports to the right place and communicate with the dance
team and cheerleaders so that all of the entertainment groups are
working as one. Both the marching and pep bands are very
important in terms of leading the crowd in school spirit.
year's Bearcat Band should be better than ever, especially since
the number students returning to the band from previous years is
much higher. "The higher return makes the marching band that much
stronger this year," Ploetz says.
Every Bearcat fan and UC
alumn will have plenty of chances to catch Emily and band in
action Homecoming weekend. In addition to performing during the
football game, there's the parade before the game and a band
concert at Sigma Sigma Commons. This year's Homecoming weekend
promises to be musically super-charged, thanks to our Bearcat