More than 350 University of Illinois students got their 2015 holiday plans disrupted today – in the best possible way. The Marching Illini learned the band is one of 10 chosen to perform in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Nov. 26, 2015, beating out more than 175 applicants from around the country. The parade, a tradition since 1924, now draws more than 3.5 million live spectators and an estimated 50 million TV viewers.
Andrew Megill, considered one of the leading choral conductors of his generation, will join the University of Illinois in the fall as the director of choral activities and as a professor of conducting.
The Alma Mater sculpture will make her long-awaited return to the Urbana campus April 9, where she will be put back on her pedestal to silently watch the next century of university progress.
Roger Ebert will not be at his namesake festival this year, but he will kick it off just the same. “Life Itself,” a documentary about the late film critic’s life, will open this year’s Roger Ebert’s Film Festival, running April 23-27 in Champaign-Urbana.
The University of Illinois School of Music will host the North American Saxophone Alliance conference next weekend (March 20-22). Held biennially, the conference is expected to draw about 1,000 saxophonists – jazz and classical, amateur and professional – to participate in master classes, competitions and performances.