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Marching Band

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MIT Groups
Marching Band
Type of Group: Arts
Founded: {{{est}}}
Office: W20-423
{{{officertitle}}}: President

The MIT Marching Band (MITMB) is a is purely student-run scatter band and does not fall under the umbrella of the institute's music and theater arts department.

Currently, the band regularly plays for all home football games. It also plays for men's/women's basketball as well as sports not standard for bands to play at such as lacrosse, water polo, and rugby. With the addition of the band's eccentric uniforms and unorthodox field shows, the band has gained a reputation on campus as the institute's school spirit. [1] The band also plays at non-athletic events such as the Cambridge Science Festival and MIT's Campus Preview Weekend.



Before the late 1970s, the MIT Marching Band was a serious affair. It was run with the assistance of the Music Section faculty and did regular field shows. Membership ranged from 50 to 60 people, all of whom were talented instrumentalists. The official uniform was the red t-shirt with a trumpet logo. Because of a lack of student interest and funding, the Marching Band was reorganized as a student organization and became a scramble band. Soon afterward, the band fell into disarray several times during the 80's and early 90's before regaining a stable membership in the early 2000s.

Band Leadership

The band is led by the Board of Officers: President: Sets agenda for both the Board and the entire band and is the official representative of the group to any other organization including MIT and the athletics department. Secretary: Writes meeting minutes and maintains the Band webpage and history. Treasurer: Keeps track of band finances and submits budget requests to the Undergraduate Association Finance Board. Music Director: Leads music rehearsals and conducts during non-marching musical performances and is responsible for the selection and purchase of music, instruments, and equipment, and organization and maintenance of the music library. Drum Major: Leads marching rehearsals, conducts the band during marching performances, and is responsible for the selection or design of marching shows. Social Chair: Organizes band social events. Officer-at-Large: Performs duties assigned to them in order to lighten the workload of the other officers (often multiple officers-at-large).

From time to time, members are given (semi-permanent) honorary titles. These titles have included:

  • Honorary Lord High Executioner
  • Band Wench
  • Ambassador to the Cheerleaders
  • Mellophone Section Leader
  • Ambassador to Alien Nations
  • Comic Relief
  • Emperor Wrangler
  • Official Marching Band Sage

Notable Stunts

1980 — The band, temporarily renamed "The Rosy Ruiz Memorial Running Band" (after the woman who cheated to win the Boston Marathon), retraces the route she didn't run. 1982 — The band enters Harvard stadium disguised as members of the Yale Precision Marching Band during the Harvard/Yale game and forms "M.I.T" during halftime. This stunt was overshadowed by the more famous balloon hack pulled during the 3rd quarter.


Halloween Tour During Halloween night, the band dresses up in costumes and goes on a tour through the city of Cambridge playing themed music for trick-or-treaters. Stops include the indepentent living group Pika, the Westgate Graduate Dormitory, the President's House, and other places near central square.

Holiday Tour

Over the first or second weekend of December, the band plays both traditional and contemporary Christmas music at the Boston Common, Faneuil Hall, and Quincy Market.


During Campus Preview Weekend, the band marches the "prefrosh" out from the keynote address in Rockwell Cage to an activities fair in Johnson Ice Rink. The band also organizes their own marching tour of campus and a ice cream social.