When Missouri Southern’s Lion Pride Band takes the field for their halftime show on Saturday, Oct. 30, they’ll be joined by high-school musicians from around the area.

The annual Mass Band Day is a chance for band students to perform at the collegiate level while making connections with the university’s music faculty and marching band members.

“We’ll do an opening number by ourselves, and then the area high-school bands will join us on the field for the rest of the performance,” said Dr. Brandon Robinson, visiting director of bands at MSSU.

“When they arrive that morning, our music faculty will break them up into sections to work with them and get to know the high-school students,” he said. “Mass Band Day is a great recruiting opportunity. It allows us to build relationships with the students, and for them to see what game day is all about and be part of our band for a day. Hopefully, they’ll want to continue on and become future Lions.”

Area schools participating in the Halloween-themed halftime show include Webb City High School, Diamond High School and Seneca High School.

They will arrive at 10 a.m., then do sectional work with MSSU faculty starting at 10:30 a.m. Students will eat lunch in the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center and then attend the football game vs. Missouri Western at 2 p.m.

Robinson joined MSSU this fall as visiting director of bands, having spent more than 20 years as a music educator, clinician and drill designer. He says the transition could not have gone more smoothly.

“Typically, first years everywhere – whether you’re teaching junior high or at the college level – are tough because you don’t know the way to do certain things, and you don’t know the students yet.

“But the band has been great, and this has absolutely been the smoothest transition I’ve ever had. Kudos to the leadership here, including our assistant band director, Michael Oglesby, and our two great drum majors. They make my job much easier.”