Stanford band marches to its own beat

Aug. 6, 2006 at 12:39 AM
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PALO ALTO, Calif., Aug. 5 (UPI) -- The entire Stanford marching band, long a thorn in the side of administrators at the California school, has been suspended for vandalizing its quarters.

The Leland Stanford Junior University Marching Band moves into a new building this fall. Vandals did as much as $50,000 in damage to the trailer that has been the band's home for four years, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

The suspension is pending the completion of an investigation.

The Band Shak, as it was not so affectionately known, had windows broken, walls spray-painted with obscenities and doors and walls kicked in.

The band has long been known for marching to the beat of a different drummer. Notre Dame declared the band persona non grata after someone dressed as a nun and conducted with a crucifix, while the dancers all wore wedding veils to mock polygamy during a 2004 game at Brigham Young.

"It's different from every other college band," said Tom Richardson, a saxophonist and the group's financial officer. "You're not going to have a generic experience at a football game when you attend a Stanford game."

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