Hampton University Marching Band to perform in 2020 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Posted at 3:11 PM, Apr 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-29 15:34:13-04

HAMPTON, Va. – The Hampton University Marching Force was selected to perform in the 2020 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, representing the state of Virginia!

This will mark the first Parade appearance by the band. Hampton will join the Parade to the call of “Let’s Have a Parade,” the iconic phrase that has signaled the start of every Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade since 1924.

Photo courtesy of Hampton University Band

The Macy’s Parade Band Committee looks for bands each year that have the marching abilities to captivate more than 3.5 million live spectators and more than 50 million viewers.

Hampton was selected from more than 100 applicants as one of nine selected bands to march in the 94th edition of the annual holiday spectacle.

The band will join the revelry along with other iconic Macy’s staples: floats, giant character balloons, clowns and superstar performers galore on Thanksgiving Day 2020, helping to create an unforgettable experience for millions.

“Rooted in tradition and with explosive energy, the Hampton University Marching Force delivers outstanding, entertaining shows that time and time again bring the crowd to their feet,” said Wesley Whatley, creative producer Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. “We look forward to introducing the talented students of Hampton University to our Parade audience for the band’s debut in the 2020 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!”

The Hampton University Marching Force will spend the upcoming18 months planning for their Parade appearance. Rehearsals and creative fundraising events not only bring the school and the community closer but also prepare the students for the march of a lifetime.

“‘The Marching Force’ is an elite group of talented, young musicians and dancers who are academically accomplished. This opportunity will allow Hampton University to once again shine on the world-wide stage in front of the millions in attendance and others watching from across the globe,” said Hampton University President, Dr. William R. Harvey. Under the direction of Dr. Thomas Jones, ‘The Marching Force’ continues to uphold THE Standard of Excellence as being one of the best marching bands in the nation.”

Earlier this year, the Hampton band was invited to participate in the 2020 Rome New Year’s Day Parade, in Rome, Italy! The Marching Force drumline recently performed in the 2019 Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California, prior to the Rose Bowl. In 2018, The Marching Force performed at the 16th Annual Honda Battle of the Bands while over 62,000 fans filled the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia.

“Our goal over the past year and a half has been to build the band program so that it’s at a level on par with many of the other excellent organizations here at Hampton University,” said Jones. “Between this performance and the Rome performance, the world is taking notice of our commitment to Dr. Harvey’s vision to not just exist, but to excel. I’m proud of our students and staff, and especially grateful for our fellow faculty and administrators in helping us to carry out this vision.”