Petition asks for more Million Dollar Band members at 2020 Bama home games
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - A limited number of University of Alabama Million Dollar Band members are now allowed to perform inside Bryant-Denny Stadium for Alabama football games. But a petition is being pushed to get that number even higher.
The Million Dollar Band is 400 members strong, but only 96 of them can play during games this year under COVID-19 safety guidelines.
That’s why Emily Hicks says her father started a petition on change.org to get the university to reconsider that limitation.
Some SEC schools reduced the size of bands for games to about half their normal size. Emily and others would like to see as many band members performing at the games as possible.
“It’s like cutting off half of the voice. It’s actually three-fourths of the voice. And it’s just not the same energy. It’s not the same power that you get when we’re all together in that sense of community,” Hicks said.
The following message from the Million Dollar Band’s Director was posted on their website Friday:
Football game days are so special to so many people in this state and beyond who root for the Crimson Tide. While we wish the Million Dollar Band in its entirety could attend a full season of games, we are excited to have football back and certainly understand the limitations of reduced crowd capacity. This is especially true considering these limitation are being implemented for the safety of both the students and fans. We have worked carefully with the UA Athletic Department to achieve the best possible outcome for all concerned relative to these unique circumstances and our overall environment.
All of the 400 Million Dollar Band members will attend one of the five home games, and we are grateful that our senior members will have the opportunity to attend two.
Million Dollar Band members will take several safety precautions to protect themselves and others in attendance including:
- Always wearing face coverings (instrumentalists will wear specially designed masks that allowed them to play with their mask on)
- Social distancing in the stands
- Social distancing from fans
- No pregame pep rallies
Five different bands made up of 96 instrumentalist, color guard members and Crimsonettes will perform in the stands at the five home games. A greatly reduced staff of 10 members, including managers and trainers will attend each of the five home games as well.
Regardless of the number, the Million Dollar Band will continue to provide the spirit and excitement fans come to expect at Crimson Tide football games!
Dr. Ken Ozzello, Director, The University of Alabama Million Dollar Band
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