Called the Screaming Green Pep Band, the group of musicians can be found at the home basketball games helping to cheer on the mighty Wolverines.
As one of the teams calls a time-out, the UCCU center erupts with the sound of trombones, trumpets, french horns, saxophones, flutes and sousaphones, all kept in time by one drum set. Contemporary music from Lady Gaga or Green Day, as well as some classics like the song “Louie, Louie” sweeps over the fans, causing some to get up and dance. When the whistle blows signaling the end of the time-out, the music ceases but the spirit remains.
This is the job of the Screaming Green Pep Band. Made up of various brass and wind instruments, the pep band provides music for the down times at home basketball games. Made up of 31 members, the group has two to three musicians for each instrument, with the exception of the drum set, which only has one.
Led by Dr. Darren Bastian, the Director of Percussion Studies in the music department, the group is made up of both music majors and talented non-music majors. Bastian has had his hand in recruiting some of the musicians to group. Felix Desposorio, a sophomore percussion major from Provo, was asked to try out for the pep band by Bastian when Desposorio was taking percussion lessons. “I’ve never played [the drums] with a whole band before, just rock bands,” Desposorio said. “I really love it.”
In his major, Desposorio has studied how to play various percussion instruments such as bass drums, timpani and xylophones.
However, Desposorio has been playing the drums for over 11 years. “My brother got a bass guitar and his friend got a regular guitar so, naturally, I had to get the drums,” Desposorio said.
The group also consists of three French horns, an instrument some would regard as more appropriate in a orchestra. Marie Buhler, a junior in Music Education major from Herriman, Utah has been playing the French horn for over 12 years. “I love that it has such a wide range. It can go really high or really low,” Buhler said. “It’s one of the few instruments that can do that.” While Buhler is also in the Wind Symphony and the Horn Choir, she joined the pep band for the sheer fun of it. “I love coming to sports events, especially basketball,” Buhler said. “The music is fun to play and the game is fun too.”
by Kelly Cannon