Sunday, August 31, 2008

LSU 41-App St 13

Yesterday's game was originally scheduled for 4 PM, but due to the threat posed by Gustav, the game was moved up to 10AM. This put the game at the time when it began to really heat up during the day. By the end of the game, the stadium was nearly empty (rare for Tiger Stadium, I believe), and the band was miserable because we were in our full uniforms (we are never out of full uniform when at games). The jackets for the uniforms are really thick and heavy, too. The jackets would be great for the late November-December games up north, but for a late August midday game, not so great.

Anyways, a typical game-day Saturday for the LSU Golden Band From Tigerland (the times used are what were for this game, and are obviously different for different game times):

6AM: Rehearsal at the IFF (Indoor Football Facility) This meant I had to get up at 5 to get ready and walk over there, as it is a LONG walk from my dorm. And I'm in one of the closer dorms to the building, too. If I were in one of the dorms across campus I probably would've been getting up around 4:45. At this rehearsal, we rehearse pre-game multiple times and run through the show a couple of times, cleaning any last minute things that did not get cleaned in our 4 rehearsals to learn the show during the school week beforehand.

8AM: Rehearsal is over, walk over to the Band Hall and get in uniform for the parade to the stadium.

8:30AM (approx): Set up for parade and step-off for the march to the stadium. The parade begins at the Greek Theater and goes to Victory Hill where we then stop and play Pre-Game for those gathered (usually a LOT of people) and then run down the hill playing "Touchdown." Touchdown is what is played as we are sweeping the field during pre-game and then forming the LSU.

Typically at this point, we would then march into the PMAC (the football arena) and play for a bit, but as the PMAC is being used as an emergency medical facility for Gustav, this did not happen as they were setting the building up for that. Instead, we went straight into Tiger Stadium. Once in Tiger Stadium, we take our seats in the stands and play in the stands for a little while. Then when it gets close to game time, those who march in Pre-Game leave to set up for the Pre-Game show. Unfortunately, due to the game time and the fact that Gustav was coming, the stands were not that full at the time we performed Pre-Game. Usually the stands are close to being packed at this point. For this game it was relatively loud as we were taking the field, so I can only imagine how much louder it will be when the stands are packed.

After the Pre-Game show, we take our seats in the stands again and watch the game while playing. We then leave and do the halftime show. Afterwards, we get free food as we head back to the stands to continue playing. After the game is over, the football team gathers in front of the band, and we play the Alma Mater as they sing. Then afterwards, as the team leaves for the locker room, the band plays "Let Us Break Bread Together" and then sings the Alma Mater. We then leave and re-form the parade block and parade back to the band hall. Then (for those who want to), the pre-game and halftime shows are then watched in the band hall.

In preparation for Gustav, many people around campus who ride bikes (which is a lot of people), have locked up their bikes laying on the ground and in various locations, not only on the bike racks (which are almost full). There are bikes locked to fences, drainage pipes, and various other objects attached to buildings. All the tables in the Pentagon courtyard have been turned upside down. Street signs that are movable are all knocked down, laying on the ground. In our dorms, we have been told to eliminate as many projectiles as possible. Currently, my closet is almost completely filled with my trombones, marching band uniform and bag (with shako (hat) and gloves and raincoat) and shoes, school supplies, printers, books, music, and various other

items. Unfortunately there isn't enough room to cram everything in there, so there are still some things underneath my bed. Also, you can tell that the PMAC is being used as an emergency center, because I can hear helicopters frequently flying to and from the building. If you walk outside, you can see that many of them that are flying by are the military helicopters. They are making sure that that place is well stocked and ready for when the storm hits. The LSU campus is probably one of the safest places in Baton Rouge.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Quick Update

Due to Gustav, tomorrows game against Appalachian State has been moved up to 10AM CT, so 11AM for most of you. I don't know how this will affect the TV telecast of the game and what not. Also, classes have been canceled on Tuesday. I am expecting that they will end up being canceled Wednesday as well, not sure about the rest of the week next week.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Fay and Gustav

So in my first three and a half weeks down at LSU, I will have the possibility of already having been through two storms. The first one was Fay, which came through at the end of last week, beginning of this week, whose remnants are in the Virginia area right now, and the second possibly being Gustav. Gustav is currently in between Haiti and Cuba, but the center of its projected path has it coming straight for this area. However, most storms with that projected path end up going either towards the Florida panhandle or towards Texas. However, the LSU website is already preparing with readiness information and what to do in storm situations and all, as well as the New Orleans area getting ready for possible evacuations, setting up evacuation routes. The path of the storm will be more clear within the next day or two as it passes underneath Cuba. Currently it is expected to strengthen into a category 2 or possibly a category 3 as it travels through the Gulf of Mexico, by the time Gustav would make landfall along the Gulf coast. Where is the question. However, you don't need to fear, as the LSU campus and Baton Rouge are far enough inland to not have much impact from coastal storm surge and anything along those lines.

On to a brighter topic, my first few days of class have been pretty good. My schedule has a lot of open time which will end up being filled with working and practicing. But it is nice having a lot of open time with which I have to work with, unlike many other freshmen music majors, due to the fact that I am already entering with 5 of my general education courses taken care of due to my SAT scores and AP exam scores. Currently, I am taking "Intro to Music Study" which is a music history and a music theory class combined, as well as an "Intro to Music Education" class, which I still have to go to, the first class being tomorrow. I am also taking a math class, "Intro to Contemporary Math" which covers four completely different topics, consumer math (interest, sales, that kind of stuff), probability, and two other topics which I cannot think of at the moment. My other classes are my studio class, and this class will consist of my lessons, trombone quartet, recital attendance, and the studio class itself. This will be the hardest class for me to get an A in, as there is so much that goes into it, as well as it being very tough to get "A"'s in lesson grades. Aside from all those, I am also in the Symphonic Band and the Tiger Marching Band. Our first show, for the game this Saturday against Appalachian State, is a "champions/celebration" theme, with "We Are The Champions," "Celebrate," and "Celebration." In addition to this, it is the alumni band weekend. The band does a new show almost every week. The football team has 8 home games, so that means 8 shows at home. I say 8 shows at home, because the full band goes on one away game, this year being the Auburn game towards the end of September. I believe we will be learning a show for that game as well. And if we make the SEC championship game, thats another one, as well as any bowl game. Now whether or not we'll learn new shows for any of that stuff, I don't know, but I wouldn't be surprised if we did.