Every two years the world comes together for the Olympic Games. It is a spectacle of talent, emotion and fanfare. The host country is responsible for opening and closing the games with a fantastic celebration of the history and culture of their country.
In 1984, the United States hosted the summer Olympics in Los Angeles California. To start off the Opening Ceremonies the Olympics Committee commissioned a marching band that consisted of 800 of the top college band marchers from across the country. It was called the Olympic All-American Marching Band. Under the direction of USC's Spirit of Troy Director, Dr. Arthur Bartner, the band pulled off one of the most amazing feats in marching band history. The band included 96 trombones and 144 trumpets.
TALK ABOUT POWER!
You may not know this, but the famous "Olympic Fanfare and Theme" written by John Williams that has now become the anthem of the Olympics was actually first debuted at these games! Gosh, will someone build a time machine already so we can go back and see this in person!?!
Take a watch as the massive 800 member band opens the 1984 Olympic Games and celebrates America.
Later in the show the band performed a "Swing" show that included American classics like "Take the A Train", "Sing Sing Sing", "Opus #1" and many more. Pretty much the most epic swing halftime show ever.
At the end of the Olympic Games the band returned to perform for the Closing Ceremonies and once again just completely owned the ceremony with the playing of the Olympic Fanfare and Theme. How can this ever be topped?
All we hope is that at the next summer Olympics hosted by the USA, they bring back the Olympic All-American Marching Band and once again show the world why marching band is the greatest art on this planet.
Until then, GO USA!
Photo via USC