FAMU's Marching 100 to Join Prince at Super Bowl PDF Print E-mail
Photo credit: Monty Brinton/CBS
Jamie Foxx, left, and Kanye West, right, were backed up by the FAMU Marching 100 at the Grammy Awards last February in Los Angeles. (This photo may be reproduced for use with this story but cannot be archived, sold, leased or shared.)

The Florida A&M University Marching 100 is preparing to take the field with music superstar Prince during the halftime show at Super Bowl XLI in Miami.

Band members said the invitation to perform Feb. 4 at the NFL's biggest event came as a result of the 2006 Grammys, where members of the Marching 100 shared the stage with entertainers Kanye West and Jamie Foxx.

"From what I understand, it was Prince who invited us," said Chandler Wilson, 22, a music education student from Miami. "He saw the band at the Grammys and wanted to know who the band was," Wilson said.

It was unclear when the band was officially invited, but Wilson, the band president, said he was informed Dec. 14 at the university's fall commencement ceremony.

Exactly what Prince and the 100 will perform is not being disclosed.

"We cannot divulge any aspects of what the show contains," said Julian White, director of bands.

The performance almost did not happen.

"Dr. Bryant expressed reservations about us attending the performance, but our alumni came through and fought for us to be able to go," Wilson said, speaking of Castell V. Bryant, the university's interim president.

University officials declined to discuss Bryant's reservations. "The details of the contract are still being resolved with Super Bowl officials, but we do expect the band to perform," said Pamela Bryant, special assistant to the president.

Super Bowl XL was watched by more than 141 million viewers in the United States last year. It is annually the nation's highest-rated TV program and the most watched single-day sporting event. The game will be broadcast to a potential worldwide audience of 1 billion in more than 230 countries and territories, according to a news release.

Super Bowl XLI will not be the 100's first appearance at the big game.

The Super Bowl Web site shows this to be the band's third halftime show performance and fourth appearance at the event.

The band appeared as a solo halftime performer at Super Bowls III and V. The 100 also performed before the game at Super Bowl XXXIX.

"I am proud and elated that the Marching 100 has been extended the honor to perform at the Super Bowl," White said. "It is a great honor for the band and for the university."

On Jan. 1, the Grambling State University marching band provided the accompanying music as 200 "Star Wars" Imperial Stormtroopers marched in formation at the Rose Bowl parade in Pasadena, Calif., before an estimated 1 million spectators.

This story originated at the Famuan at Florida A&M University.

Posted Jan. 23, 2007

Posted Jan. 21, 2007
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