We’ve all heard the saying, “Do what you love and you’ll never work another day in your life.” While her job definitely entails a lot of work, for 2015 USAAAMB Program Manager Christine Norton it is a labor of love. “Every day I feel I have a rewarding job,” says Norton. “The hours can be immense and intense, but at the end of each day when I lock the doors of Presidio B (the Bowl Week band office in the Grand Hyatt), I know that the hard work has been used to change the life of a music student.”
Norton certainly knows all about what the All-Americans will be experiencing this week; she served as Drum Major for the band in 2009. “I was a very shy high school student. I love being able to give back to the program that made me a more confident individual. I certainly feel honored to still be a part of it,” she admits. The band always has assistance from alumni like Norton at Bowl Week, and 2015 is no exception. This year we are fortunate to have twelve alumni of the USAAAMB working with us, ranging from 2008 to 2012. Norton believes that returning to Bowl Week as a member of the Operations Staff is one of the best ways to be involved as an alum. Over the past year, the band has implemented the All-American Delegate Program, which aims to help newer alumni grow professionally.
As for what we can expect from this year’s USAAAMB? A group of extraordinarily talented students! The 2015 All-Americans have a combined GPA of 3.8 (out of a 4.0 scale). There are seven valedictorians and the 125 students represent 104 high schools from 35 states, including Hawaii. One of the most exciting things about the 2015 USAAAMB, however, is something the band has never done before. “This year… the band is playing the Star Spangled Banner before the game. We have never been involved in this portion of the festivities surrounding the Bowl and we are honored to be a part of that this year,” says Norton. An incredible honor for an incredible group.
The 2015 U.S. Army All-American Bowl will be live on NBC at 1pm EST/12pm CST. The USAAAMB will perform at halftime under the direction of Dr. Nicholas Holland. You can watch the USAAAMB’s performance at http://www.banddirector.com