The North Texas Green Brigade Marching Band, under the direction of Dr. Daniel Cook, enjoys a reputation for high-quality musical and visual performances and is the largest spirit organization at the University of North Texas. The ensemble performs at a variety of athletic events throughout the year and is often the featured exhibition group at marching competitions and community performances.
The Green Brigade was founded in 1911 as a student organization with 11 members, and was first led by a director in 1936 when the group was known as the “Eagle Band." The Eagle Band sought to provide pedagogical skills for music education students in the North Texas State Teachers College who aspired to teach high school. During the 1960s, the group performed "picture shows" and used a blend of corps-style and show-band marching to better engage and entertain football fans and was re-branded the “Mean Green Marching Machine.” The moniker “Green Brigade” was adopted in 1982 and remains to this day. It is a name that simultaneously reflects the ensemble’s collegial atmosphere and strong identity of corps-style performance.
The Green Brigade has developed a national and international reputation for excellence. Just some of the performance opportunities over the decades have included the annual tours conducted from 1963-1973, the inauguration of the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport in 1972, several appearances at national bowl games, and myriad annual exhibition performances at marching contests at regional events, state events (Texas State UIL), on the national stage at events such Bands of America contests, and internationally, such as excursions to Poland (2014) and Ireland (2022).
The Green Brigade has been dubbed “the best band in the land and the best drumline in college football,” by Bleacher Report, and the percussion section is an unprecedented 22-time Percussive Arts Society International Champion. The Green Brigade showcases the widespread talents of members through a broad repertoire selection ranging from classic military marches to crowd-pleasing medleys, jazz, and orchestral arrangements. An ensemble that includes members from all over the country and equally balanced in the participation of music and non-music majors, the Green Brigade has established itself as a national force in musical excellence, leadership empowerment, and cultivating a strong sense of honor and pride for every member and the university community.
As an integral component of the music education curriculum in the College of Music as well as a gratifying performance outlet for UNT students of all majors, the band provides ongoing opportunities for the development of musical and leadership skills. The over 400-member Green Brigade is a powerful contributor to the growth of UNT students and embodies the spirit and pride of the University of North Texas.
You can read more about the history of the Green Brigade via this thesis written during the band's 100th Anniversary:
A History of the University of North Texas Marching Band from 1911-2021, by Amrutha Murthy.
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