Monthly archives "December 2019"

Your Fall 2019 BandNotes

Alumni Relations


Dear Big Red Bands Alumni,

As we celebrate another successful season of the Big Red Bands, we are excited to share some of our best experiences with you. We’ve brought our Big Red spirit to games in New Haven, Philadelphia, and Cambridge as well as Ithaca and are looking forward to finishing out our semester with some final band events. We’d like to thank you for your support during our annual Phonathon and at all of our performances- we couldn’t do all that we do without our alumni!

We’ve loved serving as your 2019 Alumni Relations chairs, and look forward to passing the role down in December.


Julia Klopfer ’20 and Diane Sutyak ’20

And now presenting the only REAL BandNotes in the Ivy League!

Your Guy on the Ladder: Notes from the 2019 Drum Major

Alumni Relations

Hey Alumni!

buckets It’s your guy on the ladder, Buckets, here to tell you a bit about how our marching season has been going!  From Day 1 of recruitment, all hands were on deck as we chalked for the first time in recent memory without any rain washing away our beautiful art.  We auditioned 140 new members, with a high retention rate shown in our 160 member Yale trip and 140 member Harvard trip attendances by the band. All these new members is what has kept me bright-eyed and spirited as I truck-away at finishing my pre-vet requirements and submitting my applications for the next phase of my life.

And now to go into the shows for the year.  Our celebration of 50 years of Women in the Band included a show centered around the power women hold and the impact they have had on our organization.  Keeping in spirit with this, our very own sax section leader Kyra Butler ’20 arranged the pregame song of “Woman” by Kesha. Halftime consisted of “Confident” by Demi Lovato, and an arrangement of “Natural Woman (You Make Me Feel Like)” by Aretha Franklin done by ShowComm member Josh Mooney ’20.  The turnout for homecoming was incredible, and we dedicated “Natural Woman” to all of the women in the band the past 50 years and added it to our concert folder. During our trip to Yale, we were blessed with the opportunity to perform in Herald Square. Seeing the empire state building above and conducting in a spot I grew up visiting throughout my life was an experience I will never forget.

The second show we performed was that of the Empire State Show.  The Band takes the audience on a tour around New York State, starting in the Adirondacks with “Welcome to the Jungle,” for pregame.  As halftime approaches, we move to New York City, where we perform an arrangement of “Brooklyn” by the Youngblood Brass Band done by former Head Manager (’14) Alex Settle ’16, and finally come back home to Ithaca with “Bare Necessities.”  We performed this show at Harvard, and showed them who is boss, even during their 100th anniversary of their band’s existence. During the Harvard trip, we performed in Quincy Market, and even with the rain, the Band persisted and sounded great in yet another iconic location, making memories for the books.

Our third show was the Rockin’ Through the Generations show, where the Band took you through 3 generations of people found at Cornell and the songs they grew up listening to.  First we started out for pregame in the 80’s, the generation many of the bandies’ parents grew up in, and performed “Livin’ on a Prayer” by Bon Jovi. For halftime, we moved into the millennial era, our recent grads, and performed “Thnks Fr Th Mmrs” by Fall Out Boy, and closed with a Gen Z favorite of “Believer” by Imagine Dragons.  Both performances of this show were done at home, so we enlisted help of our Indoor Drumline President and Bell Subsection Leader Elena Fernandez ’20 to put together a front ensemble featuring a drum kit, adding a fun element to the show.

The final show we performed was the Victory Show.  We started the show off with “Victorious” by Panic! at the Disco for pregame.  For halftime, we performed the infamous “Sweet Victory” as seen in the famous Marching Band episode from Spongebob Squarepants.  For the second song of halftime and our senior song, we performed “How Far We’ve Come” by Matchbox 20. This show was performed in part during our final trip to Penn on November 9th as well as two weeks later, the 23rd, during the last game of the season, followed by the traditional senior concert.

It is hard to believe that the very position I have devoted so much of my life to the past year is soon to come to a close.  Having the honor of being the Drum Major of the ONLY real marching band in the ivy league has given me the greatest of moments I could have never even thought of.  I have gotten nostalgic and sentimental almost every game so far, and am sure I’ll be even more emotional as the season comes to a close.

Thank you Jill, section leaders, show comm, librarians, all of bandstaph, the trumpet section, and most importantly THANK YOU BAND for giving me experiences of a lifetime and for giving me a reason to always be longing and yearning and always returning to my old, Corn-ell.


~ Justin “Buckets” Kozma


Thanks for the Memories: Notes from the 2019 Head Manager

Alumni Relations

HEY ALUMNI!Screen Shot 2019-12-03 at 3.13.36 PM

This past year has given me experiences that I will remember for a lifetime! I am a leader in other organizations on Cornell campus, and I can truly say that there is no other group that comes close to encompassing the Cornell pride and spirit as the Big Red Band does at all of our performances.

The start of the season began with new recruitment events as move-in transitioned into a 2-day event with recruiting outside of Barton Hall no longer possible. With the Orientation Steering Committee, we developed a new strategy to recruit members, which brought us nearly 150 students to auditions. With the Nines closed, a new tradition began of holding First Night in Willard Straight Hall with food provided to members by Shortstop Deli and paid for by the Band. Vice President of Student and Campus Life Ryan Lombardi made a special appearance at our first night of performances and shared his meaningful band experiences.

We had an exciting marching season with multiple exciting and fulfilling travels. Our first trip involved a performance at Herald Square before the Yale football game. Next, we celebrated the 50th Year of Women in the Band at Homecoming where our Show Committee designed The Women Empowerment Show. The following week we attended the Harvard football game in Boston with a concert at the Faneuil Hall. We then had 3 home football games, which included one under the Friday night lights. We travelled to UPenn at the beginning of November and closed the season at our final home game against Columbia where we ended the football season with “Cornell Victorious.” All of our trips this semester had an attendance of approximately 160 band members!

Outside of football games, our first Philanthropy Coordinator Oscar Tendilla offered numerous community service opportunities to band members early in the fall such as building homes through Habitat for Humanity. The Drumline dawned a new, all-black percussion set this season. The Uniform Committee is in the final stages of selecting a new uniform that the Band will wear for the next decade. Our relationship with Neil Adams, Ithaca College Instrument Repairman, was strengthened over the past few months. The Big Red Band is so grateful for Neil’s work on repairing our instruments and approximately 30 instruments that were previously unusable are now in working condition.

Throughout the semester, it was necessary to ensure administration’s expectations of the Band were upheld. Numerous traditions were reformed with our advisor to ensure our new members were given the most positive experiences in an inclusive environment.

I encourage alumni interested in the operations of the Band to reach out to the BRBAA council. Student leaders go to the council for support throughout their time overseeing the Band. Through the BRBAA council, you can voice your opinions and truly ensure that they fulfill their purpose of supporting a student-run Band.

I will always be supporting my successor and cheering on my underclassmen! Being Head Manager of the Big Red Marching Band was the most challenging position I have ever taken on, especially during a time of change on Cornell campus. As a first generation student, the Band gave me a sense of belonging and a home during my first month at Cornell. I will forever remember watching the Band empower female leaders!


Jill Crosby  ’21


Notes from the Pep Band Manager

Alumni Relations


I have had such a blast being Pep Band Manager! I am so grateful to have had this experience and have made so many amazing memories and gained really valuable experience leading such a fun group of people! Being the manager is so rewarding and I love watching how happy our performances make members, athletes, and all of the spectators in the stands!

Summer with the Pep Band was really nice – we played at reunion and the Racker’s Rival charity hockey game. We even had a rehearsal! Then, we got all ready for O-week and recruitment went great! Everywhere was all chalked up and we got over 100 sign-ups! Attendance at rehearsal and events has been outstanding and we have new members from all different years.

I am super happy that hockey season is starting up again. Everyone in the group is so hype and Red/White was SO amazing! The drumline has been performing the Big Red Rave before all of the Men’s and almost all of the Women’s games. We have some awesome AWAY TRIPS to look forward to:

Friday, December 6th: Men’s Hockey vs. Harvard (at Harvard)

Saturday, December 7th: Men’s Hockey vs. Dartmouth (at Dartmouth)

In addition to hockey, of course, this semester we have performed at Women’s and Men’s Soccer, Field Hockey, Volleyball, and Sprint Football. We can’t wait for the wrestling matches later this month! We also played at so many other fun events like Procrastinate at the Straight, ClubFest, and other graduation performances that we got paid for!

Our teams are preforming great this semester. As usual, our Men’s and Women’s Hockey teams are killing it. Men’s Soccer just beat Harvard 6-0 for a huge win. Volleyball is undefeated in the Ivy League, and Field Hockey is ranked top 25 in the country. It is so wonderful that we get the chance to play for these fabulous athletes.

I would like to thank my amazing conductors this semester, Bekah Koutereba and Casandra “Clover” Moisanu for their support, enthusiasm, dedication, and organization. Everyone on the Pep Band board has helped me so much and I am so grateful for their willingness to participate and their love of the Pep Band. It has been so much fun working with the Big Three! I am so happy with all of our members, new and old, and seeing people enjoy Pep Band makes the experience all the more worthwhile.

Although I am sad that I will not be manager anymore in a few months, I have loved this experience and gotten so much out of it and it really has been unforgettable. Alumni, if you are ever around for a game, make sure to stop and say hi! I am so excited to see someone take my place and I wish them the best of luck! Thank you again to the Big Red Bands for letting me have this incredible opportunity!

Natalie Parker ‘20


Section Shenanigans

Alumni Relations

The Flutes have nearly doubled iflutes 2n size in the past two years, becoming the second largest section in the BRMB! With nearly 40 members, we continued many of our old traditions, such as Fancy Flute, flute-upping, and stealing the Tubas’ hats during Power, while also adding new traditions, like Soup Sunday at Flute House and making cat puzzles during movie nights. With our season halfway over, we look forward to decorating our boxers for Penn and amoeba-ing to cope with the chilly fall weather! Thank you to all the alumni that joined us during Homecoming. It was wonderful seeing you all, and we send our flove to those who could not make it. <3



clarinetsThis fall, the Clarinets have continued to excel. We welcomed a group of wonderful new members to our section. We also won the scavenger hunt for the fourth time in five years. In celebration of Halloween, we carved some beautiful pumpkins. We had a super fun game night featuring Jackbox Games and the classic Jumbling Tower. Homecoming was a blast once again, as we reunited with our beloved Olds. Soon, we plan on having a clarinet crafts + Taylor Swift night. And to wrap up the semester, we will have our annual clarinet gift exchange. Stay tuned for more nifty ‘net news.




The Saxes have been working harsaxesd to foster a sense of community and friendship in the section, especially with the freshmen. From outings like apple picking at Indian Creek Farm or simply hosting a viewing of Over the Garden Wall to start off the fall. To make sure saxhouse is a home for everyone in the section we’ve been hosting a chill Wednesday night study session where we hang out and do our homework together. This also makes sure that no matter what there’s always a night where you can see the section even if you have a particularly busy week because in the following week you can come to saxhouse. We’ve also continued with the tradition started by Brian Scaramella ‘18 of rehearsing sax cheers after Thursday night rehearsals and have even gotten to reintroduce Benny Hill to our repertoire and add a brand new cheer, Megolavania from the video game Undertale, written by James Calano ‘22!

Screen Shot 2019-12-06 at 10.42.20 AMThe Trumpets have been gifted an incredible class of new members this fall! We have some fantastic people joining our ranks, and I couldn’t be more proud or excited for the future of the section. Other than looking and sounding perfect all season, the Trumpets have expanded our repertoire for third quarter cheers. We’ve added some new arrangements, such as “Remember Me” arranged by Buckets ‘20, as well as bringing back some oldies like “Tetris” and “Monty Python”. Off the field, we celebrated the Autumn season with a harvest-themed feast while watching the series “Over the Garden Wall,” and we’re all looking forward to our holiday celebration later this semester. Both of these efforts are spearheaded by our lovely Andrew Ardizzone ‘20, the 2019 Hannah Sollecito Trumpet Mom. We had a lot of Trumpets in power this year (as they should be), notably Buckets “Justin” Kozma ‘20 as Drum Major, Spinmaster Peter VandeVort ‘21 as ShowComm Chair, and Mantis ‘22 as the finest warrior the band has ever seen. Thank you all for the best season a sappy senior could imagine!



The Horns have been having an amazing fall semester so far and look forward to our remaining games! We have four wonderful new freshmen: Caroline, Scott, Isaac, and Chris, none of whom like Hawaiian pizza. We will be sad to see our seniors Emma, Kelly, Emily, and Nile march their last show this season, and wish them the best of luck in thefuture! The horns continue to bond over Jackbox games and temporary tattoos on away trips and we now have our very own Horn Hub (Max and Daniel’s apartment) where we host all our wholesome horn events!



Da Bones are thriving amidst the boneschaos of the fall semester. We just saw many of you for the SECOND DOUBLE GRAND BONECOMING and I’m proud to say that we brought the service at The Pines to a damn near standstill. They say that the Ithaca infrastructure is still recovering from having the center of the universe being shifted to it for a weekend. If you couldn’t make it this year, no need to fret, the bones aren’t going anywhere any time soon (thanks to bone inertia) so we’ll catch you next time. This season we’ve welcomed many great freshmen into our ranks, including a large number of tones. Our first couple practices were so well attended that showcomm offered us another rank. Even as our football team…well… performs, the Bones have been killing it on and off the field, and we’re just as excited as ever for the start of hockey season. Peace and Bones!




The Tuba section now plays the tuning note instead of the trumpets. We have a newish website too, so be sure to check it out.







The Screen Shot 2019-12-03 at 2.52.27 PMGuard is fully in the swing of things this marching season! We welcomed several new sophomores and one freshman this year, and sometimes we need to use more than 12 practice silks! This season started out with an awesome visit to Yale, and the day before that we performed on the streets of New York City outside Macy’s. Yale was followed by a Homecoming full of friends old and new, where our show celebrated 50 years of women in the marching band! The guard continues to hold the position of best 3rd quarter snack, most recently bringing an electric griddle and making fresh pancakes, which were very well received by all. From nose-booping to pineapples, one could say we have developed some interesting new inside jokes as a section, but tag-yourself memes still make appearances! Mac-n-cheese remains a strong tradition, and we’re so glad to be developing new ones every year. This season’s been a good one so far, and we’ve still got a ways to go! The guard is looking forward to the rest of the semester, and we’re excited for the future.

The Percussion section declines to provide information. They are not cool enough for BandNotes, evidently.

Senior Perspective

Alumni Relations

Being a senior in band feels strange, since this isn’t my first time being in this situation. I knew I was going to join band before I got to Cornell, since I had marched all through high school. But I didn’t know how much fun I would have in the Big Red Marching Band, or how it would come to define my college experience. When I walked up to the band room for auditions in August 2016, I was honestly a bit intimidated. There were so many people I didn’t know, and everyone was overwhelmingly friendly for a shy little freshman like me. But I decided to stick with it through First Night and beyond, and that was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my time at Cornell. Joining band, and specifically the sax section (the best section in the only real band in the Ivy League), gave me my first community at Cornell, and getting to know upperclassmen was especially helpful for me as I navigated my first few semesters.

The band has gone through a lot of changes in my time at Cornell, and sometimes it’s been hard to watch certain traditions fade away to make room for a new culture. Despite my nostalgia for the way the band used to be, I believe that these changes are truly for the best, and I’m excited to see where the band goes once I leave. What has most impressed me is that, amidst the external pressure for us to move in a different direction, the band internally has stayed intact. Above all, we want to preserve the organization that has given us each so much, and we want to make it as fun and inclusive as we can.

I’ve had (almost) four incredible years with the Big Red Marching Band, and I wouldn’t have wanted to live my Cornell experience any other way. It will be hard to see the band go on without me and my fellow seniors, but it will be equally satisfying to come back as an alum and see it flourish under new leadership. I can’t wait to wear my alumni sweater with pride!

Katie Sadoff ~20