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You Visit Tour. Webb Lion Fountain. June 1 2017. Photo David B. Hollingsworth

Monarch Marching Band to Participate in Dublin's St. Patrick's Day Parade

Among the sea of green that will be Dublin, Ireland's 2016 St. Patrick's Day Festival Parade next year there will be a swath of blue.

The Monarch Marching Band has been invited to perform in the parade in the Republic of Ireland's capital, as part of a trip where the marching musical ambassadors will represent Old Dominion, Hampton Roads and Virginia as they perform around Ireland, including the 45th annual Limerick International Band Parade.

Alexander Treviño, director of athletic bands; and Dennis Zeisler, director of bands travelled to Ireland for this year's St. Patrick's Day Festival Parade and received the official invitation to perform in the 2016 Parade from the Lord Mayor of Dublin Christy Burke.

"This is a monumental event for our program and for the university," Treviño said. "In only our sixth year as a marching band program, to be invited to perform internationally for a crowd of 500,000, and another 500,000 estimated to watch at home in Ireland alone, is an honor beyond description.

The meeting was a welcome to all participants in the 2015 parade, and those who were invited to the 2016 parade next year, although Old Dominion was the only school to receive the invitation at the event personally from the Mayor, Treviño said.

"He congratulated us as and thanked us for being willing to come all the way from the US to celebrate with the city," said Treviño. "That the performance will occur during the centennial anniversary celebration of Ireland's independence - we cannot even approach describing how special that will be for our students and for Old Dominion."

The band students will pay for a portion of the trip using personal funds, while contributions and donations from outside sources are anticipated to defray some of the cost to students.

Treviño and Zeisler encouraged as many members of the Monarch Marching Band as possible to take part in this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

"To perform in such a historic city, as part of such a memorable event, is something we hope many of our Marching Monarchs are able to experience. We know they will represent the University with pride and passion," Treviño said.

For more information, contact the Monarch Athletic Bands Department at Old Dominion, at 757-683-5850 or see the Monarch Marching Band website.

The Monarch Marching Band was created by Treviño in 2008 in preparation for the band's official debut in 2009 when football returned to Old Dominion. The band is currently comprised of 185 students of all majors and from around the Commonwealth and the United States.

The band performs regularly at football and basketball games and also supports other athletic teams on a limited basis. The band also performs in exhibition yearly at high school marching festivals and contests, including the Virginia State Marching Band Championships held in October at the Sportsplex in Virginia Beach. The band was awarded "Best Marching Band" at the Downtown Norfolk Grand Illumination Parade for 2013 and 2014.

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