14:01 PM

It’s official: Ohio State University Marching Band members selected for 2018

With tryouts concluded, practice for new TBDBITL season begins this week

After a hot summer of practice, effort and an occasional cow bell, the 141st edition of The Ohio State University Marching Band is now official.

Band director Christopher Hoch and his team selected the 228 brass and percussion instrumentalists to make up the marching band for the 2018 season Monday night. The selection comes after two days of musical and marching auditions. The final roster was chosen shortly before midnight.

“Congratulations to one and all. Fantastic job. This is going to be a fantastic season,” Hoch told the new members of the marching band. “I’m really excited and it’s going to be awesome.”

Summer sessions to practice and prepare for tryouts began in June. Would-be band members rehearsed music and marching on hot practice fields as squad leaders banged jam blocks or cow bells in metronomic cadence.

In addition to the celebrated half-time shows for Buckeye football games, the marching band was selected to perform in the 2018 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. This will mark the first Parade appearance by the band.

Over the course of his band career Thomas Unger, a fourth-year electrical and computer engineering major, has worked through every level of the tryout process. This year he was a squad leader, responsible for helping the evaluation process that led to the selection of the band.

“It’s not as physically demanding for the squad leaders, but it’s definitely mentally demanding,” Unger said. “We have to be on our game all the time to make sure we are catching every detail of marching that we can.”

Unger said it was a great way to cap off what will be his final season in the marching band.

Konner Barr, a fourth-year strategic communication major, was selected as drum major for the 2018 season in April. He said now that tryouts are over, the work for the season can begin in earnest.

“I’m very excited to start the season. Picking the 141st edition of the marching band was awesome. It’s one of my favorite parts of the season,” Barr said. “Then the first practice [Tuesday] is my second favorite part of the season. You have all these wide-eyed people who get to experience the marching band for the first time. That practice is always special. Everybody is always laser-focused even though they are running on a couple hours of sleep.”

Unger agreed.

“It’s just been a really exhilarating day. I’m very excited to get the season started.”