School of Music Hires Director of Marching Mizzou

Erin Cooper Becomes First Female Band Director at MU
Erin Cooper
Jordan Yount
News Source: 
College of Arts & Science

The University of Missouri School of Music has hired Erin Cooper to be the new Director of Marching Mizzou, one of the most visible ensembles in the School of Music and the largest student organization on campus. Cooper has been Director of Bands at Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Durant, Oklahoma, for the past year. Her duties at SOSU included directing the Spirit of Southeastern Marching Band, directing the wind ensemble, directing the pit orchestra, and teaching music education classes and applied flute lessons. Julia Gaines, director of the MU School of Music, says Cooper becomes the first female band director at MU and the only female athletic band director in the Southeastern Conference.

“Erin Cooper was at Faurot Field for the MU–Alabama game in 2012 when it poured rain and said we had the nicest fans in the SEC,” Gaines says. “We are very fortunate to have found someone with the talent and experience necessary to continue the great traditions of Marching Mizzou.”

Marching Mizzou is composed of over 300 students from nearly every major within the university. This time-honored organization combines Tiger pride, quality musicianship, unrivaled dedication and over 110 years of tradition to create its nationally renowned gridiron excitement. Cooper will spend her first day on campus July 18.

“This is all very exciting and humbling! I can't wait to get up there,” Cooper says.

Cooper earned her undergraduate music education degree at James Madison University, her master’s in conducting performance from the University of Delaware, and a doctor of musical arts in wind conducting from the University of Alabama, where she served as a graduate assistant with the Million Dollar Band. Cooper also has been on staff with the George N. Parks Drum Major Academy and travels across the country during the summer to teach week-long workshops to prospective drum majors at different university campuses.

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