Arts & Entertainment

An Inside Look at Manhattan College’s Pep Band

By Katie Heneghan, Web Editor 

At every home basketball game, athletes, fans, and coaches are greeted by the enthusiastic and passionate pep band. The band is composed of a range of instruments producing the boisterous and welcoming anthems of the basketball games.

Senior accounting major Lauren Saggese is a veteran flutist for the pep band with over 12 years experience with her instrument. Saggese detailed the extensive work that goes into producing the music for each game.

“We practice every Monday from 6:30-8:30pm. There are auditions for pep band, held early in the fall semester. You do have to own your own instrument and be able to sight-read, but it’s an easy process and everyone is very welcoming,” said Saggese.

The pep band is part of the spirit squad for the school joined by Jasper Dancers and cheerleaders to generate school spirit at basketball games. Along with performances at the basketball games, the pep band performs at the MAAC tournament held in March in a competition called Band Jam.

“My favorite memory is the MAAC Tournament last March. It’s always fun to have the whole band together for a few days and the Band Jam where all the colleges’ respective pep bands get to show off their songs is definitely the best part,” said Saggese.

The pep band’s presence at all basketball games brings a spirited influence of pride to Draddy Gymnasium BRIAN ASARE/ THE QUADRANGLE

Sophomore business student Tim O’Brien has been playing the baritone saxophone for 11 years. To prepare for a game O’Brien and the other members set up their orchestral equipment in Draddy Gymnasium.

“About an hour before every game the pep band spends time moving all the equipment from the band room in Thomas into the gym. Also, members of the pep band warm up during that hour before the game doing things such as tuning and practicing our music.About an hour before every game the pep band spends time moving all the equipment from the band room in Thomas into the gym. Also, members of the pep band warm up during that hour before the game doing things such as tuning and practicing our music,” says O’Brien.

Senior Ellen Farrelly has been playing the piano since the age of 6. Farrelly plays the keyboard for the pep band as well as leading the club as the band’s president.

“We play about 32 songs plus the cadences that the drumline plays. Before basketball season, our rehearsals are our only meeting times, but during the end of the fall semester and the beginning of the spring semester our schedule is packed with our performances at the Men and Women’s home games in Draddy”, said Farrelly.

As a seasoned veteran, Farrelly recalls her favorite memory as a member of the pep band as the bands international trip with the Men’s Basketball team.

“My greatest Pep Band memories were made in Belfast my sophomore year when we traveled with the Men’s Basketball team to the Belfast Classic Tournament. That entire trip was an awesome experience,” said Farrelly.

As a prominent presence in Draddy Gymnasium during all basketball games, the pep band provides a spirited influence of school pride. If interested in the pep band, reach out to jasperband@manhattan.edu.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment