Johnstown Independent

Big Red Band to perform at Browns-Ravens halftime


Johnstown-Monroe High School's Big Red Band scored a performance at the Cleveland Browns' home football game against the Baltimore Ravens on Nov. 3.

"This is a very big performance for our group, and I couldn't be more excited for our kids," said Joe Carver, band director.

He had he had sent a video of Big Red's Massillon band festival performance to a Browns special-events coordinator.

"They said they loved what they saw and wanted us to come up and play for halftime of one of their games," Carver said. "This is a great honor and privilege, as not many high school bands get asked to do these types of performances."

Carver said he wanted his students to experience the same opportunity and thrill he had as a member of the Marching 110 at Ohio University.

"When I was in the 110, I played at the Jacksonville Jaguars, Cleveland Browns, Cincinnati Bengals and New York Giants stadiums," he said.

Carlos Oseguera, Browns director of fan experience and special events, said a lot of NFL teams book top-level bands to perform.

"I reached out to the Ohio University Bobcats," he said. "They mentioned this band. I sample everything to make sure it will be the highest quality we can get.

"They did a good job in what I was able to see from a video standpoint," he said. "I felt comfortable with booking them."

Oseguera said the band would be given a DVD of its performance.

In addition to playing during the Browns-Ravens halftime, the Big Red Band will perform outside the stadium at 2:30 p.m. while fans are tailgating and preparing for the 4:25 p.m. game.

Today's football game is the Browns' military appreciation day, so Big Red will play patriotic pieces in addition to some traditional favorites.

"The piece that we are playing is a medley of Born in the USA and all four of the armed forces marches," Carver said.

Marching band assistant director Dennis Moore said the 180-plus band would perform its regular halftime show in Cleveland.

"Very few high school bands get to play at a pro football game," Moore said. "It's an honor in itself. Just Big Red will be there. We're the halftime entertainment."

Following the Cleveland trip, the band will kick off its annual Varsity Show in the performing arts center.

Varsity Show will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 7-9, and 5 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 10.