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Bruins pep band to bring new excitement to Bruins games

Dan Kirsop directs the Bruins pep band in rehearsal for their debut performance this Tuesday. Photo: Ethan Rogers

The inaugural performance of the Bruins Pep Band will be Tuesday, Nov. 18, at the Bruins women’s basketball game against Erskine College.

Naomi Baker, a senior piano pedagogy major who plays percussion for the pep band, said, “I’m so excited to support our Bruins by hitting things—rhythmically.”

When deciding to form the pep band, members of the music faculty were looking to incorporate something that would promote unity among the Bruins’ fans. They hope that the pep band will bring the student body together, while providing an opportunity for students to use their instruments in an encouraging way.

Dan Kirsop, faculty member in the brass department, is directing the pep band, which will perform at a few games this semester, with the majority of its appearances being next semester.

The band is currently working on learning “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and buying new pieces to add to their lineup.

While the band has already started rehearsals with its 15 players, Kirsop said they are looking to add more members.

“I’m thinking that there are people out there in the University that have experience playing in band that just feel that they are so covered up that they don’t want to venture into the music department,” Kirsop said. “But this is a good way to put their toe in the water.”

He is hoping that this will be an opportunity for students who would not normally play in a BJU band to use and improve their talents in a fun atmosphere, where they can watch a game, practice together and make music together.

Kirsop said the audition will not be intimidating, as the music the band will play is not overly complicated. Kirsop said he is looking for students whose skills can contribute to the group, but that the skill level required is not as high as it is for the Concert Winds or Symphonic Winds. Kirsop said they’re looking for traditional band instruments such as clarinets, tubas, trumpets, trombones, flutes, horns, saxophones and oboes.

Co-curricular points will be given to students who participate in the pep band, but it is also open to staff and faculty who are interested in playing.   

The band meets for rehearsals on Wednesdays at 5 p.m. in Fine Arts 119. Students interested in auditioning can contact Kirsop via email or phone or by stopping by his office. If a student cannot make a Wednesday rehearsal, Kirsop said he is willing to work with students outside of that time as needed.


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Bruins pep band to bring new excitement to Bruins games