March 29, 2023

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New band corridor set to open this spring 

(Benjamin Voller | Collegian Media)

It’s one other night time of marching band rehearsal and an assortment of band members rush to assemble on Memorial Discipline. Daniel Smith, drum main of the band, mentioned he watches as everybody finds their place, however within the distance a couple of stragglers arrive late, devices in hand, out of breath after their trek from McCain Auditorium. 

This situation is one Kansas State College Marching Band members are all too acquainted with, Smith mentioned. In accordance with Ok-State’s web site for updates on the brand new band corridor, Ok-State is the one faculty out of all 65 Energy 5 universities to not have a chosen constructing for its band. 

The dearth of a chosen constructing means the marching band at present makes use of McCain to retailer its gear, Smith mentioned. The band can also be challenged with internet hosting as much as 15 totally different sectional practices each week with solely two accessible rehearsal areas in McCain.

With the band reaching 400 members this yr, Frank Tracz, director of the band, mentioned there’s a want for a bigger facility. 

“We have been in McCain once I first began 30 years in the past. The band was sufficiently small that it might slot in there again then,” Tracz mentioned. “By in all probability my third yr right here I noticed the band was outgrowing McCain, so it’s been a very long time since I began speaking a few new facility.”

(Benjamin Voller | Collegian Media)

Due to director Tracz’s work and the contributions of a number of donors, the Ok-State marching band will welcome a brand new house later this yr based on Ok-State’s web site. The Tracz Household Band Corridor is predicted to be completed by the top of April 2023, Tracz mentioned. 

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The brand new band corridor will function instrument and uniform storage, truck loading zones for touring, a brand new rehearsal house for the band and Elegant Cats, workplaces and different facilities. Additionally it is situated proper subsequent to the band’s follow discipline, Tracz mentioned, one thing that can save the band money and time.

Erin Flax, clarinet participant within the marching band, didn’t anticipate the inconvenience of not having a spot to name house when she entered this system as a freshman. 

“I anticipated a collegiate marching band to have a extra subtle facility that might home its wants higher. Not having that was a shock to me,” Flax mentioned. “However now there will probably be bodily illustration of the appreciation the band will get from the neighborhood. It feels nice to get that recognition by lastly having an area to name house.”

“It’s exhausting to know. Everybody sees the band and says ‘effectively it’s there,’ however there’s a lot that occurs behind the scenes. It’s been a problem,” Tracz mentioned. “Now we can spend extra time on different issues, and we’ll fill each minute.” 

Based in 1887, the Ok-State marching band turns 136 years previous this yr, and Smith mentioned he believes it’s about time the band claims a everlasting house on campus. 

“The band is changing into extra acknowledged, and persons are noticing the expansion of the marching band and the way large of an affect we now have on the college. Now is an efficient time to see the band have a spot to name house,” Smith, senior in music schooling, mentioned.

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Even with out a designated band constructing, Smith mentioned he believes the Ok-State band has reached these new ranges of success by a shared imaginative and prescient.

“What we don’t have in amenities, we make up for in a way of satisfaction and neighborhood,” Smith mentioned. “All of us love Ok-State, all of us love the sport day ambiance and we like to see one another succeed. It’s one thing that’s distinctive to us.”

Whereas the brand new band constructing highlights the accomplishments of the band, Flax mentioned she thinks it additionally serves as a reminder that up till now, the necessity for a band constructing has been left unaddressed.

“I really feel just like the music division has not at all times been prioritized,” Flax mentioned. “I believe we lack numerous funding to make issues like this occur. We simply haven’t had the assets previously.” 

Regardless of this, the Ok-State band continues to play on, Tracz mentioned, catching the eye of individuals throughout the state. Director Tracz mentioned he traveled throughout Kansas to lift over $5 million for the brand new facility.

“There’s numerous band alumni donors, however there’s additionally individuals who weren’t concerned with the band previously who have been simply Ok-State followers which have seen the band and needed to help us,” Tracz mentioned. 

The constructing of the Tracz Household Band Corridor marks each the affect of the band, and the contribution of donors, Smith mentioned. He hopes that the marching band will proceed to serve the Ok-State neighborhood. 

“The donations actually put into perspective how many individuals care about us and depend on us to provide them a superb Ok-State expertise,” Smith mentioned. “We need to proceed to develop for them as a result of they’re the rationale why we’re right here.”

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