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Members of Virginia State University's Trojan Explosion Marching Band at the White House.

VSU's Office of Communications and University Relations:

On February 27th, the Virginia State University Trojan Explosion Marching Band made history when they performed as part of the White House Black History Month Program. The VSU band provided the musical backdrop as guests arrived for the annual White House Black History Month Program. The Band performed a medley of unmatched and unique sounds derived from various musical genres and songs made famous through Black culture.

VSU President Dr. Makola M. Abdullah and Band Director, Mr. Taylor Whitehead.

This is the first time a university band has been selected to perform for this event. The honor is traditionally reserved for the marine corps band. “We are honored and beyond delighted that members of our VSU Trojan Explosion Marching Band were afforded the opportunity to perform at the White House,” said VSU President Dr. Makola M. Abdullah. “Our band is the best in the country, and we are always excited to showcase the talents of our scholar students on major platforms.”

Last week, the VSU Trojan Explosion Marching Band performed live on national television on the NBC Today Show. In addition, they recently performed in Alabama after receiving a coveted invitation to participate in the Honda Battle of the Bands. The band consists of 120 members and is under the direction of Mr. Taylor Whitehead, a former Trojan Explosion member. “The White House was able to accommodate only a select few of our band members, but we are exceedingly proud of our entire unit,” said Mr. Whitehead. “These young scholars always show unparalleled dedication to their craft while maintaining commendable academic acumen. These accolades reflect that hard work and dedication, and I am exceedingly proud to lead such a group of talented scholars.”

This is the second time the VSU Band has been invited to perform at the White House. In 2010, the VSU Drumline made history when President Barack Obama invited them to perform for the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

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