BSC Office of Communications

News from the Hilltop

Nov. 18, 2009

Birmingham-Southern's new Panther Pride Marching Band to take field in 2010

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—Birmingham-Southern College brought football back to its Hilltop campus in 2007 after a 68-year hiatus. Now, the college is bringing back the marching band.

The new BSC Panther Pride Marching Band is currently recruiting members to take the field at home football games beginning in fall 2010.

Modeling the new Panther Pride Marching Band uniform is future band member Claire Burns, a sophomore English major from Douglasville, Ga.

Birmingham-Southern will be the only school in the 12-member NCAA Division III Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference with a marching band.

“Marching bands have long been synonymous with college football, and we wanted to bring that pageantry, that excitement, and that tradition back to Birmingham-Southern,” said BSC President Dr. David Pollick in making the announcement. “The response from our current and future students has been overwhelming.

“The Panther Pride Marching Band will not only give those interested students the opportunity to continue marching in college, but will expand our instrumental program by attracting talented young artists to our music and music education majors.”

As a complement to the marching band, the college also is also recruiting members for the Symphonic Band that will begin performing in spring 2011. BSC students who participate in both the marching band and the symphonic band will receive an annual $1,000 participation scholarship.

J. Lynn Thompson of Hoover, a well-known conductor, artistic leader, recording artist, and performer, is serving as the college's director of marching and symphonic bands.

Thompson said that membership in the Panther Pride Marching Band is open to all BSC students. The band will include wind instruments, percussion, color guard, and drum majors. The black and gold uniforms to be worn by the band have already been designed.

“We only began recruiting a few weeks ago and already have 60 current and prospective students who have indicated they are interested in being members of the marching band next fall,” said Thompson, who also is a visiting professor of music.

“I have visited many high schools and college fair recruiting events across Alabama, and there is tremendous interest among high school band members in continuing to march in college at Birmingham-Southern.

Thompson spent 27 seasons with the Atlanta Lyric Theater, a company he helped found in 1980, as both music director/conductor and artistic director; 27 years with the Atlanta Public Schools at North Atlanta School of the Arts; and the past 23 summer seasons as music director with The Ohio Light Opera. He received his bachelor's degree in vocal music/music education and his master's in orchestral conducting, both from Georgia State University.

For more information on the Panther Pride Marching Band, including a registration form, visit or contact Thompson at or 205/226-4953.



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