The Jacksonville State University band performed at the Vatican on Tuesday.
The Jacksonville State University band performed at the Vatican on Tuesday at the conclusion of Pope Francis’ New Year’s Day blessing.
The renowned band, known as the Marching Southerners, also performed in the annual World Peace Day Parade and marched through the streets of Rome playing “Ode to Joy” for 100,000 spectators, the university said.
After the pope concluded his remarks, the band played songs including the JSU Fight Song, and sang “I’ll Fly Away.”
The Marching Southerners were one of a select number of American and Canadian bands who were invited to perform Tuesday at the Vatican, according to the university.
The band has played other high-profile events in recent years, including the 75th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack in 2016 in Honolulu, the 2012 New Year’s Parade in London, and the 1996 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.