New Twirlers Selected for 2022-23 Purdue “All-American” Marching Band

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Emily Cowette of Londonderry, NH will serve as the 32nd Purdue Golden Girl, continuing a tradition started by Director of Bands Emeritus, Dr. Al G. Wright in 1954. On Saturday, March 26, her audition earned her one of the most iconic positions on Purdue’s campus. Cowette, who began twirling at six years old, is currently a freshman studying Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences. She held the position of Silver Twin during the 2021-2022 season.

 

Haley Aiken will return for her third consecutive year in the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band as the Girl-in-Black. She is currently a sophomore majoring in Psychological Sciences. Aiken is from Jeannette, PA and has been competing both individually and on a team since 2008. She is a member of Team USA World Baton Twirling Team.

 

New to the position of Miss Boilerette, Katie Harris will be taking the field as the 4th person to hold the title.  Currently a sophomore studying Interior Design, Harris held the position of Silver Twin for the past season. Miss Boilerette was originally part of the Purdue Twirling program during the 2009-2010 season and has been a fixture in the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band since 2018.

 

The Purdue “All-American” Marching Band is pleased to have current sophomore, Alexa Lytle of Englewood, CO and current freshman, Alana Diedrick of Broadview, OH as the 2022-23 Silver Twins. Lytle is majoring in Geology and Geophysics and Diedrick is major in Biomedical Health Sciences Pre-Dental. Both are currently members of the Purdue All-American Twirling Team.

 

In addition, eight students were offered spots on the All-American Twirling Team to round out the Purdue Twirling program. They include returning twirlers, junior Caroline Hawkins, sophomore Jack Matthews, current freshman Emma Alexander, and incoming freshmen Clara Berg, Lili Breunig, Anna Hardesty, Dallas Ingle, and Bailey Wyatt.

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All twirlers and band members are required to audition for positions annually, and candidates must be admitted to Purdue University in order to qualify for solo auditions. We are thrilled to welcome our new team to Purdue this fall. They will make their debut performance on Saturday, August 20, when the 137th edition of the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band takes the field for their End-Of-Camp Performance.

 

Photo: The 32nd Purdue Golden Girl – Emily Cowette


Drum Majors Selected for Purdue “All-American” Marching Band’s 2022-23 Season

Following a demanding audition process, the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band announced that Valerie Minnick and Geoffrey Ladue will serve as the Drum Majors for the 2022-23 season. The two will lead the Band to carry on its tradition of excellence through athletic events and thrilling performances.

Valerie is a sophomore from Brighton, MI majoring in Chemistry. She performed in the Big Ten Flags and piccolo sections of the “All-American” Marching Band and currently plays flute and piccolo in the Campus Band. Valerie is also a member of the department’s Library Team, plays in the Boiler Box Band and is MC for Kappa Kappa Psi – the National Honorary Band service fraternity.

Geoffrey is a sophomore from Wildwood, MO majoring in Industrial Engineering with a minor in Statistics. He plays trombone in the “All-American” Marching Band and the Purdue Wind Ensemble, and has performed as a pianist with the Wind Ensemble as well. He serves as a Student Life Ambassador for Purdue Bands & Orchestras, Student Leader in the “All-American” Marching Band, and is also an active brother of Kappa Kappa Psi.

As the AAMB celebrates this appointment, the Band also wishes their outgoing Drum Majors, Lorin Nugent and Jonathan Heidegger, all the best as they begin very successful careers. Stay tuned at www.purdue.edu/bands for further updates on the Fall 2022 season for the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band.

 


Students Recruited as Hagle Hall construction ambassadors

Purdue University continues to serve as a leader in transformative education, providing students with practical, hands-on experience in their field of study. This year, three students are taking their coursework into the real world as construction ambassadors for Hagle Hall – the new home of Purdue Bands & Orchestras.

 

Gilbane Building Co. hired Josh Fiore, Lucy Han, and Joey Martin as part of the overall construction team for the new state-of-the-art facility slated for completion in spring 2022. These students were selected from a pool of applicants to work closely alongside Gilbane Building Co. throughout the construction process and provide constituents with regular updates on the building’s progress. Through weekly meetings and tours of the facility, the students get an up-close look at the complex construction process with all its moving pieces. They not only learn about the process through hands-on experience, but also serve as active participants in promoting the new facility to alumni, donors, students, and fans of Purdue Bands & Orchestras.

 

This particular team of students all come from both the College of Engineering and Purdue Bands & Orchestras. Josh Fiore, a sophomore studying Construction Engineering Management, plays Baritone in the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band and Euphonium in Concert Band. Lucy Han, a junior in Computer Engineering, plays percussion in the spring concert bands and takes photos of the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band at rehearsals and performances. Joey Martin, a senior in Civil Engineering, plays mellophone in the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band, Boiler Brass, and Boiler Box Band, and plays French Horn in Concert Band.

 

 

Hagle Hall

Thanks to a leadership gift from Marc and Sharon Hagle and through the generosity of many Purdue Bands & Orchestras friends, the 133-year-old, internationally recognized department will move out of the cramped Elliott Hall of Music basement—a space the program has long outgrown—and into a brand-new, 37,000-square-foot facility in the heart of campus. Make a gift today to Hagle Hall.


Purdue Bands & Orchestras Selects Golduster Dance Team Coach

Natalie Hess will serve as the Purdue University Golduster Dance Team Coach beginning in the fall 2021 season. Hess performed as an Indianapolis Colts Cheerleader for eight straight seasons between 2008 and 2016, including four seasons as Team Captain. In addition to representing the Colts organization at events across the country and world, she cheered at all home football games as well as Super Bowl XLIV, and received the highest honor a Colts Cheerleader can receive, representing the organization at the Pro Bowl. Hess also worked as a Dance Instructor and Choreographer for The Dance Refinery in Indianapolis, and coached the Dance Team at Decatur Central High School.

Founded in 1980, the Golduster Dance Team performs with the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band at all home football games and at various other University events. The Goldusters perform many styles from pom, to hip-hop and jazz. More than just dancers, the team consists of hard working individuals in a variety of majors who come together to share their passion for dance. The Golduster Dance Team practices 5 days a week in the fall with the “All-American” Marching Band and practices twice a week during the spring semester. The team travels with the band to one away football game each season and may perform during Bowl Games and international tours with the band as well. The Golduster Dance Team is curricular, which earns members college credit for participating.

The 2021-22 Goldusters will make their debut performance under Coach Natalie Hess on Saturday, August 21 in the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band End-of-Camp concert.

 


Coach Joy McEwen Departs Purdue Bands & Orchestras Following 8-Year Legacy

After eight years as Director of Auxiliaries and Golduster Dance Team Coach, Mrs. Joy McEwen is retiring from Purdue Bands & Orchestras prior to the fall semester. She held the position since 2013.

McEwen came to the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band after a long career as a professional modern dancer in New York City, where she performed and toured internationally and domestically with several dance companies. Among these were the Erick Hawkins Dance Company, Nancy Meehan Dance Company, LifeDance/Gloria McLean, Valerie Green Dance Entropy, and a company she co-founded, The Wellspring Project (Dance).

With the “All-American” Marching Band, McEwen most enjoyed traveling to Colombia and Ireland, performing at the Indy 500 and two bowl games. Coach Joy is credited with restructuring the spring semester course for all the auxiliaries and reviving the All-American Twirling Team. She is especially grateful to all the Goldusters for their dedication, professionalism, and effort in each and every performance.

Please join us in thanking Coach Joy McEwen for her dedication and eight years of service to Purdue Bands & Orchestras!


Dr. David Blon Joins Purdue Bands & Orchestras Faculty

Dr. David Blon will join Purdue Bands & Orchestras this fall as a Clinical Assistant Professor. Blon recently served as Artist-in-Residence for the department during the 2019-2020 academic year. He received his Bachelor of Music at Slippery Rock University, his Master of Music at Youngstown State University, and his Doctor of Musical Arts at the University of Missouri – Kansas City. Prior to pursuing his doctoral degree, Blon was Director of the University of Hawai’i Symphonic Band and the “Rainbow Warrior” Marching Band. He also served as the Graduate Teaching and Conducting Assistant for the Conservatory of Music and Dance at the University of Missouri – Kansas City. For three summers, he was the Ensemble Manager for the World Youth Wind Symphony at Interlochen Center for the Arts. Most recently, Blon was the Director of Athletic Bands at West Virginia Wesleyan College.

“We could not be more thrilled to have David joining our faculty here at Purdue,” remarked Jay Gephart, Director and Al G. Wright Chair of Purdue Bands & Orchestras. “His professional experience and academic success will be so meaningful in providing special opportunities for our students. We are so fortunate to work with him again and welcome him back to the Purdue Bands & Orchestras family.”

As Clinical Assistant Professor, Dr. Blon will direct various concert bands and teach classes in the College of Liberal Arts.


2021-22 Golduster Dance Team Selected

After an extremely competitive audition process, the 2021-22 Golduster Dance Team has been selected. The team welcomes four new members this year. Paighton Derrick is a senior at Morton High School from Morton, Illinois, majoring in Nursing. Emma Hawkins is a senior at Harrison High School from Delphi, Indiana, majoring in Exploratory Studies. Hannah Karczewski is a senior at Penn High School from Granger, Indiana, majoring in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences. Myana Pace is a senior at Center Grove High School from Greenwood, Indiana, majoring in Communications.

 

Returning members include Malaya Atisso, Elena Eberwine, Payton Fine, Anna Foster, Peyton James, Kendall Johnson, Ally Kiger, Arisa Kulkani, Rylee Madden, Kaitlyn Murphy, Natsume Narasaki, Hannah Ortman, Brittany Rogers, Sophia Strain, Julia Vogele, Ashlyn Waddington, and Amber Wentz. Congratulations to all of the members of the 2021-22 Golduster Dance Team!


New Twirlers Selected for 2021-22 Purdue “All-American” Marching Band

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Amanda Coy of Saline, MI will perform for a second consecutive year as the 31st Purdue Golden Girl, continuing a tradition started by Director of Bands Emeritus, Dr. Al G. Wright in 1954. On Saturday, March 27, her audition earned her one of the most iconic positions on Purdue’s campus. Coy, who began twirling when was just three years old, is currently a junior studying Pre-PA/Health Sciences and held the position of Girl-in-Black during the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons.

 

Haley Aiken will return for her second consecutive year in the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band as the Girl-in-Black. She is currently a freshman majoring in Psychology. Aiken is from Jeannette, PA and has been competing both individually and on a team since 2008.

 

For her senior year, Alexis Piskulic of Arnold, MO will perform as the third ever Miss Boilerette. Currently a junior studying Political Science and Sociology, Piskulic has held the position of Silver Twin for the past three years after beginning to twirl when she was ten years old. Miss Boilerette was originally part of the Purdue Twirling program during the 2009-2010 season.

 

The Purdue “All-American” Marching Band is pleased to welcome incoming freshmen, Emily Cowette of Londonderry, NH and Katie Harris of Windsor, CO as the 2021-22 Silver Twins. Cowette will major in Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences and is a feature twirler with the Londonderry High School Lancer Marching Band. Harris will be in Exploratory Studies and is a current member of the M Twirling Team.

 

In addition, nine students were offered spots on the All-American Twirling Team to round out the Purdue Twirling program. They include returning twirlers, juniors Ashley Brazeau and Leah DePasquale, sophomores Caroline Hawkins and Iman Mevaa, current freshmen Alexa Lytle and Jack Matthews, and incoming freshmen Emma Alexander, Alana Diedrick, and Georgia Langston.

All twirlers and band members are required to audition for positions annually, and candidates must be admitted to Purdue University in order to qualify for auditions. We are thrilled to welcome our new team to Purdue this fall. They will make their debut performance on Saturday, August 21, when the 136th edition of the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band takes the field for their End-Of-Camp Performance.


Homecoming 2021 Update

Celebrating 100 Years of the World’s Largest Drum at Homecoming 2021
Full Alumni Band Reunion Moved to Fall 2022

Purdue University’s iconic World’s Largest Drum turns 100 years old this fall. The Purdue “All-American” Marching Band will celebrate this historic anniversary by welcoming our Big Bass Drum Crew alumni back to campus during Homecoming weekend (October 1-2, 2021). Participating Drum Crew alumni will play an integral part of the celebration as the century-old, University icon is featured throughout the weekend. Additional details will be announced in the summer pending new guidelines for fall events and campus visitors.

There remains uncertainty on how the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic may affect a number of campus activities in the fall, such as football games and large alumni events. Due to this uncertainty, Purdue Bands & Orchestras has moved the full Alumni Band Reunion back one year to Homecoming of fall 2022. This biannual reunion consistently welcomes over 500 alumni from across the country to perform together and reconnect with close friends. While we are saddened to delay this exciting reunion for one year, we believe it will ultimately allow more of our alumni to be part of the special Purdue Alumni Band tradition in a safe and healthy way. The full Alumni Band will pick up its every other year pattern starting at that time (2022, 2024, etc.). We look forward to hosting our largest ever Alumni Band weekend during Homecoming 2022 in what will be our brand-new home, Hagle Hall.


Drum Majors Selected for Purdue “All-American” Marching Band’s 2021-22 Season

Following a demanding audition process, the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band announced last weekend that Lorin Nugent and Jonathan Heidegger will serve as the Drum Majors for the 2021-22 season. The two will lead the Band to carry on its tradition of excellence through athletic events and thrilling performances.

Lorin is a senior from Champaign, IL majoring in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering. He has played tenor drums and served as a student leader and Drum Major in the AAMB. He also plays flute in the Purdue Wind Ensemble.

Jonathan is a junior from Brownsburg, IN majoring in Computer Science with a minor in German. He has played Tenor Saxophone in the Purdue Wind Ensemble, Boiler Brass, and AAMB.

As the AAMB celebrates this appointment, the Band also wishes their outgoing Drum Major, Torey Caldwell, all the best as she begins a very successful career following graduation in May. Stay tuned at www.purdue.edu/bands for further updates on the Fall 2021 season for the Purdue “All-American” Marching Band.

 

 

 


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