The Alabama A&M marching band took center stage to kick off the festivities at the 97th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York, infusing a dose of Southern charm and flair into one of the nation’s most iconic holiday events.
Leading the procession, the Marching Maroon and White Band proudly represented their school as the first of 11 marching bands to grace the parade route. Amidst the traditional larger-than-life balloons, musical showcases, and celebrity appearances, the Bulldogs’ performance stood out as a testament to their dedication and talent.
Earning the coveted spot in the parade was no small feat; it followed a rigorous two-year application process. Band director Carlton Wright shared his excitement with AL.com prior to the parade, emphasizing just how monumental this opportunity was for both the band and the university.
“This is huge for us,” Wright expressed. “Being selected to perform in the parade is a massive honor. While many people are familiar with Alabama A&M, there are still many others worldwide and across the country who might not know us. But on that morning, they will not only know who we are but also where we hail from.”
Remarkably, this marked the first time that a Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) marching band had the privilege of leading the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, adding an extra layer of significance to this historic event.
In addition to their parade debut, the university announced that the A&M Dancing Divas would take part in a special performance alongside the renowned Rockettes at the iconic Radio City Music Hall, further solidifying their place in the spotlight.
For those who may have missed this memorable moment, a video capturing their exceptional performance is available for viewing.