For the first time in almost four decades, the Seahawks are on the march again — on the marching band field, that is.
Inspired by the 2012 football team’s success, Vice President Angelo Araimo led the charge to revive a marching band at Wagner. Jose Diaz, who previously served as the orchestra conductor and instrumental music teacher at Saddle River Day School, was hired as the band’s director last summer. During the band’s first season, 22 students have participated, and Diaz plans to expand that number in the coming years.
Wagner previously had a marching band, which started in the 1940s and existed (with some interruptions) until the mid-1970s. (See "Flashback" for more on this history.)
Groundbreakers of the revitalized Wagner marching band include flutist Kendra Best ’16, who is also serving as the band’s president. The psychology major from Metuchen, New Jersey, leaped at the chance to join the band because, she says, “it has been a huge part of my life since I first joined in fourth grade.” She fondly remembers playing with her high school band in the Orange Bowl halftime show and at Disney World’s Magic Music Days.
Now with Wagner’s fledgling ensemble, she is eager to play at Seahawk basketball games this spring, appear in local parades, and perform a field show for football games next fall. “I enjoy being a leader, and I look forward to the growing of the organization,” she says.
“It’s so incredibly fun,” adds Madeline McKnight ’16, a psychology major who plays bass drum and serves as the band’s equipment manager. “I look forward to every rehearsal, every game, basically any time we get together.”
Photo Credit: The Wagner Marching Band at Homecoming 2013 by Vinnie Amessé