UNO Marching Mavericks host “Marching Band Buddies”

MBBuddiesThe UNO Marching Mavericks hosted, “Marching Band Buddies” on September 22-23. This program, which is in its fourteenth year, pairs UNO marching band members with sixth-grade band students from Western Hills Elementary School (Omaha Public Schools). Melissa Berke, Coordinator of Music Education, organizes the program. “The inspiration for this great collaboration came from a lesson developed by one of my students in the elementary music methods class who wanted to find a way to teach marching band to young children. After I saw him teach the lesson, I knew I could build on his idea to show beginning band students where hard work and practice can lead!”

Each year a music education student prepares a lesson introducing the students to marching band fundamentals. The following day, students meet their buddy and have the opportunity to walk alongside them in the marching band rehearsal. “This is a great opportunity for my students.” says Diane Diffey, their instrumental instructor. “The UNO students make the elementary students feel welcome and are really encouraging.”

The success of the program is best described by sixth-grade student Camden Wright: “This was SO awesome! I can’t wait to come to UNO and be in the marching band!”

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