Reunion May 30 — and more updates!

REUNION MEETUP. Our annual reception will take place during the University’s Reunion Weekend, on Saturday, May 30, from 4 to 6 p.m. We’ll meet in a tented area on Ancel Plaza, the space east of Amsterdam Avenue surrounded by the Law School, East Campus and International Affairs, where the kind alumni folks will treat us to good things to eat and drink; from the main campus, cross the bridge to the Law School and turn left. You’ll have a chance to see the Columbia Band’s motion picture debut, a long-forgotten 1935 musical short called “Meet the Professor!” The Band is seen and heard (it’s a talkie, kids!) for a good chunk of the film, showing its versatility in such numbers as “Who Owns New York?” and Wagner’s Prélude to Act III of “Lohengrin”; not to be missed.

SUMMER FUND DRIVE. Sometimes success has a price. As the Marching Band’s recruitment and retention continues to improve, the cost of keeping the group in instruments, keeping those instruments in repair and supplying all the other things needed to perform at sports and other events grows as the Band grows. We’re working with the CUMB managers as they seek more support from the University. (The Band, after all, does more than almost any other student group to foster community spirit, on the field and on campus.) We also believe in doing what we can as alumni to help along the way. The Wind Ensemble, with smaller financial needs than the Marching Band, does admirable, innovative work with their music program for city school kids and has started to add chamber group performances to its regular schedule of full ensemble concerts; it also deserves our support. So from Reunion in May to Homecoming inOctober, we’re asking alumni to consider making a donation. It’s tax deductible. And yes, if you have an unused instrument in the back of the closet, we’ll take it and give you a nice receipt acknowledging your gift. To offer an instrument, email columbia.band.alumni@gmail.com. To make a cash donation, see our website’s Support page.

CARNEGIE HALL ON CD. Also at the reception on May 30, we’ll introduce our souvenir recordings of the Columbia Band at Carnegie Hall, documenting performances with Lehigh in 1963 and with Harvard in 1965. Each concert package consists of two CDs and a 28-page booklet of photos, ads, programs, complete personnel lists, reviews and more. The base price is $30 per concert, but buy at least one of each, or two of the same concert, and they’re just $25 apiece. Or, if you’re feeling generous, a donation of $60 or more to our summer fund drive will bring the set of your choice as a thank-you; we’re a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, so this donation will be tax-deductible to the full extent permitted by law. If you can’t pick up your copies in person on the 30th, we’ll mail them to you and eat the cost of shipping. Click here for easy on-line ordering.

BACK IN THE PRESENT. The Wind Ensemble finished the academic year with performances by chamber groups and by the full ensemble. Small groups took part in a campus classical concert sponsored by the Columbia College Student Council, and the entire CUWE offered a concluding concert in two open-air venues a few days apart: onein the shadow of Alexander Hamilton (CC1778), beneath the dorms of Van Am Quad, the other at the 116th Street entrance to Riverside Park; the year-end program, following tradition, consisted of pieces chosen by graduating seniors. Meanwhile, the Marching Band also closed out its year in fine form with its own traditional spring performances:welcoming admitted students in April at Columbia’s annual pre-frosh program, Days on Campus; cheering on last-minute filers in the Band’s regular Tax Day ceremony on the steps of the City’s main post office; and, of course, disturbing the midnight peace inButler Library with music and gags at Orgo Night, a ritual now at least 40 years old and still playing to an SRO house. The group also made a first-time appearance marching at the 12th annual Persian Parade in midtown. How about that?

Whether you’re in a reunion class this year or not, if you’re within hollering distance of campus, come say hello on the 30th!

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