The Wisconsin Marching Band and Varsity Band play an important role in the excitement of Badger athletics, the vitality of the Madison campus, and the pride of Wisconsin alumni and fans across the state and throughout the country. Most people are surprised to learn that the University of Wisconsin-Madison does not provide funds to meet the cost of such critical items as new instruments and uniforms, which are not a part of the Band’s annual budget. Outside of contributions, the only money available is generated by the Band’s own activities and is used to meet the costs of daily operations.
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However, the lack of institutional dollars is understandable. Current Director of Athletic Bands Corey Pompey, like his predecessors Mike Leckrone and Ray Dvorak, is a faculty member in the School of Music. Thus, the Band program is technically a part of the School, which must direct its own limited resources to programs for music majors – but few UW Band members are music majors. During the 2019-2020 year, for example, only six of the students in the Marching Band were music majors.
Thus private support is essential for keeping performance quality, showmanship, and energy at the high levels that audiences have enjoyed from Corey Pompey and the talented, hardworking UW-Madison students who play under his direction.
Michael Leckrone Director Of Marching Bands Fund
The Michael Leckrone Endowment Fund helps to enhance the band director’s salary and offers a permanent source of income for meeting major needs that will recur in the future. It provides the Director of Athletic Bands with some flexibility in responding to unexpected needs and in taking advantage of unanticipated opportunities. Gift dollars support expenditures that enhance and benefit the Marching Band when no other source of funding is available. Income generated by the fund will guarantee the resources to always meet these and other critical long-term needs, so that Wisconsin’s remains “the best band in the land” for generations to come.