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Linda Cajigas
Jacobs School of Music

Alain Barker
Jacobs School of Music

Last modified: Friday, October 5, 2012

IU's Marching Hundred receives half-million-dollar gift for new practice facility

Oct. 5, 2012

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University's famed Marching Hundred has taken another significant step toward its goal of constructing a new practice facility, thanks to a recent gift of $500,000 from Bloomington's Cook Group Inc.

The Marching Hundred celebrated the naming of the IU Jacobs School of Music in 2005.

Print-Quality Photo

"The latest gift from the Cook Group, earmarked by Carl Cook, is a major step toward our goal of building a new Marching Hundred Hall," said David Woodley, now in his 20th year as director of athletic bands at IU. "This gift brings our total to around $2.6 million, which is just over halfway toward our projected fundraising goal. We are very fortunate to have Carl Cook on our side while building this new structure."

Cook said it's especially gratifying for him to be part of this project because the Marching Hundred was so important to his father, the late Bill Cook -- founder of the company and longtime Bloomington philanthropist.

"My father and former Marching Hundred director Ray Cramer were close friends," Cook said. "And my father always felt that a permanent home for the Marching Hundred was one of the great unmet needs of the School of Music and the Athletic Department."

Through the generosity of a number of private donors -- including Col. Jack I. and Dora Hamlin, who pledged $1 million last year -- the Jacobs School is well on its way to obtaining the estimated $4.5 million needed to complete the hall. The Cook Group's gift, along with the Hamlin gift, will be administered by the IU Foundation.

The new facility will establish a permanent home for the Marching Hundred and allow it to practice and store instruments in the same place. Since 1983, the group has been housed in a number of temporary rehearsal spaces. A lack of indoor space means rehearsals must be canceled during inclement weather. Since Marching Hundred is a class for which students receive academic credit, it has been, essentially, a class without a classroom for almost 30 years.

An ensemble of the Jacobs School of Music, the IU Marching Hundred is the product of a tradition that dates back to the organization of the first band at Indiana in 1896. Originally founded to provide recreation for interested students, the 22-piece band of 1896 grew to 47 members by 1913, with 280 members in fall 2012.

Following a growing awareness of the band's excellence in performance, John Philip Sousa visited Bloomington in November 1925 and declared the ensemble "one of the snappiest marching and playing bands in the country."

In 2007, the Marching Hundred received the Sudler Intercollegiate Marching Band Trophy, the nation's highest and most coveted award for college and university marching bands.

In 2012, the group was the only band in the country to be selected to perform at Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis.

Watch this video to learn more about the latest gift for the Marching Hundred Hall.

For more information about the Marching Hundred Hall project, contact Melissa Korzec at 812-855-4656 or