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The Arizona State University Sun Devil Marching Band, School of Music and Sun Devil Athletics banded together to create a virtual performance of the fight song to show support and build encouragement for Sun Devil Nation. And through the project, the students making the video also found support and encouragement for themselves.
“In my college experience, there is truly no family like the ASU Sun Devil Marching Band program, and working with my friends to create this really fun piece of music was almost as rewarding as performing with them out in the Tempe heat,” said Shawn Schive, a junior studying music learning and teaching.
Schive, who plays trumpet in the marching band, volunteered to spearhead the project and coordinate and edit the video after William Kennedy, associate athletic director of Sun Devil Athletics, and James Hudson, director of athletic bands, proposed the idea of making a video.
“I am very proud of all the students who participated and of Shawn for his hard work,” Hudson said. “I also think it’s really cool seeing a bassoon and a French horn in a marching band video! It really shows how our students are involved in and play other instruments in the School of Music.”
“It was great to play the fight song one last time with some of the band members,” said Jalen Montgomery, an undergraduate music education major and member of the band’s leadership team. “I play tuba in the marching band but did not have access to a tuba, so I had to learn the fight song on the bassoon and had fun. This collaboration showed me that musicians can always come together and play music together even through social distancing.”
Jasmine Salazar, an undergraduate music learning and teaching major, said that she had struggled with moving to an online platform with classes.
“Being a part of this collaboration allowed me to do something that I enjoy and brought on a sense of purpose for me during this chaotic time,” Salazar said. “It was a way to connect with others, create music and show my pride of being a Sun Devil.”
Music performance major Alexander DeFrances, who plays trumpet, said it was great to be a part of the collaboration even while everyone was so far apart.
“We're still able to listen to each other, speak with each other and perform with each other,” DeFrances said. “It's special that nothing can stop our love for performing.”
Schive said in addition to collecting videos of other musicians in the band, he also received videos from the band’s drum majors, baton twirlers and flag and dance team members.
“I believe a lot can be said about the music community and the amount of creativity and innovation that I have seen in the last few weeks,” Schive said. “Music is truly universal and comes in many different forms, and the online response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been truly inspirational for me. Through this project and so many I have seen in the online music world, I think that there is something that we can all learn about the power of community even when we need to stay inside for our health.”
The Sun Devil Club also released a longer version of the Sun Devil Marching Band video that features messages from athletic staff and coaches.