Lauren McIntyre, Class of 2018, won’t be coming home for St. Philip’s Homecoming game on October 6th, but she has a good reason.

This former BCACS Marching Band member will be playing in her first pre-game show as a member of the Spartan Marching Band for Michigan State University’s Homecoming game.

Lauren McIntyre, Class of 2018, and the baritone section of the 2018 Spartan Marching Band. Lauren is in the back row, second from the left.

“There are over 300 people in the MSU band,” Lauren said. “The size of my section is as big as the BCACS’ entire marching band. It’s a totally different level than anything I’ve ever experienced.”

How does one go from small school to Big Ten?

Note by note.

Lauren picked up the trombone in 5th grade, joining the BCACS Marching Band for its inaugural year as a seventh-grader.

“I remember our first band camp,” Lauren said. “We spent a lot of time learning what marching band was.”

Lauren McIntyre during her BCACS Marching Band days at Superfest.

Lauren stayed in the ranks, marching at times with her older brother Wade and younger sister Maddie, finding she preferred marching band to concert band. BCACS Band Director Laura Bandlow named Lauren the “Outstanding Band Student” Lauren’s senior year.

“Lauren is one of the most effervescent students I’ve known,” Mrs. Bandlow said. “She loved band and was always happy and excited to be in the band room, on the marching band field, or in concert formation.”

BCACS Band Director Laura Bandlow gives Lauren McIntyre the 2018 Outstanding Band Student Award.

When Lauren decided to attend Michigan State University, Mrs. Bandlow encouraged her to audition for the Spartan Marching Band. Lauren figured it was a long shot, but one worth taking.

During the audition, the assistant director asked if Lauren would consider playing the baritone.

“I said I’ll learn,” Lauren said. “I wanted to be in the band.”

Lauren did learn, with a little help from her first band teacher.

“Lauren met with Mrs. Bandlow several times throughout the summer,” Lauren’s mother Louanne McIntyre said. “She even let Lauren borrow a baritone before she was able to access the MSU baritone so she could learn the instrument and music.”

The hard work paid off. When Lauren received her official acceptance letter, a wave of excitement went through her family and her BCACS family. She is the first BCACS alumni to march at a collegiate level.

“I was so excited for Lauren that I squealed out loud and jumped up and down,” Mrs. Bandlow said. “When I saw Lauren in her uniform marching at MSU I cried, several times – happy tears, of course.”

Right now, Lauren is an alternate, which means she marches to the game and plays in the stands. She is guaranteed at least one pre-game show, her first being MSU’s Homecoming game. Every game day she has an opportunity to audition for the half-time show, a goal she’s determined to achieve.

“I’m always in rehearsal, doing homework, or practicing,” Lauren said. “Those are the only places you’ll find me.”

Currently, Lauren’s favorite part of being a marching Spartan are the Series.


[See video above of the SMB rehearsing one of the 2018 Series. Lauren can be seen at minute 5:30.]

“The Series is our march to the stadium, and it’s insane,” Lauren said. “A lot of bands just march to the stadium, but The Series is four cadences that are linked together with vocals and moves.”

Lauren’s march to the Big Ten is an inspiration for those marching for her alma mater.

“Having Lauren in one of the very best Big Ten marching bands proves to our students that it can be done,” Mrs. Bandlow said.

Everything you need to know about Homecoming 2018
Where will you spend your 1500 minutes?
Questions? Call Cathy Erskine at 269.963.1131