Marching Illini Challenge Alumni at Halftime

Photo courtesy of Marching Illini

As Saturday is Illinois’s homecoming vs. Indiana University, the Marching Illini will be welcoming back former band director Gary Smith, who served as director of the Marching Illini from 1976 to 1999. Since he retired, it has been tradition for Smith to direct the Marching Illini’s halftime show during the homecoming game.

“I’m so appreciative that the directors keep inviting me back,” Smith said.

The Marching Illini will be joined on the field by alumni of the band and together they will play Power Intro, a stands tune composed by Illinois Director of Bands Dr. Robert Rumbelow, and an arrangement of Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better.

During Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better, the Marching Illini and the alumni band will do several musical, as well as choreographed, exchanges.

“The audience will get a kick out of the fact that we’re challenging each other and making fun of each other, just like the song says,” Smith said.

About: Kirsten Keller

Kirsten is a sophomore in news-editorial journalism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She plays piccolo in the Marching Illini and works for The Daily Illini, the University's daily newspaper. Kirsten is originally from Downers Grove, Illinois.