ATU Marching Band Excited to Be “Back” in 2021

ATU Marching Band 2019
File photo of the Arkansas Tech University marching band, "Arkansas' Band of Distinction," making its way to Thone Stadium at Buerkle Field for a performance in 2019.

One of the traditions immersed in Arkansas Tech University history is the university’s marching band, better known throughout the United States as “Arkansas’ Band of Distinction.”

That tradition will continue when the ATU marching band makes its 2021 debut as part of Arkansas Tech’s home football game against Southeastern Oklahoma State University on Thursday, Sept. 2. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Thone Stadium at Buerkle Field in Russellville.

Arkansas’ Band of Distinction appears at ATU home football games and a variety of parades and marching exhibitions.

Dr. Daniel A. Belongia, professor of music, is in his seventh year as director of bands at Arkansas Tech. Dr. Jonathan Nash is in his first year as ATU assistant professor of music and assistant director of bands.

The 2021 season will mark a return to the field for Arkansas’ Band of Distinction, which had its 2020 marching season canceled by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Everyone knows what the state of the world has been like and how it has affected the lives people live within it,” said Belongia. “Educators and students of Arkansas Tech University have been greatly impacted and have longed to be back in the stands underneath the Saturday night lights. Arkansas’ Band of Distinction wants to shout ‘we’re back’ from the rooftops with our 2021 show, Back.”

Learn more at and follow regular updates from Arkansas’ Band of Distinction at

The staff for the 2021 ATU marching band is listed below.

Profesor of Music and Director of Bands
Dr. Daniel A. Belongia

Assistant Professor of Music and Assistant Director of Bands
Dr. Jonathan Nash

Instructional Staff
Ethan Nooner and Philip Parker, Drumline
Kasey Eubanks, Color Guard
Erin Cooper, Twirl

Tech Instrumental Faculty
Karen Futterer, Flute
Ken Futterer, Double Reeds and Saxophone
Dr. Nicolas del Grazia, Clarinet
Dr. Gretchen Renshaw James, Tuba
Philip Parker, Percussion
Dr. TJ Perry, Trumpet
Evan Mino, Horn
Dr. Sean Reed, Trombone and Euphonium
Dr. Jeff Bright, Department Head

The Voice of the Band
Dr. Jon Clements

Student Staff

Teaching Assistants
Anna Bloodworth and Grace Davis

Drum Majors
Isaac Deaver, Corrigan Burkett, Megan McGinnis

Band Captain
Jimmie Rhine

Band Captain Assistant
Alex Louden

Section Leaders
Piccolo: Diana Nava
Clarinet: Piper Turner and Morgan Bates
Saxophone: Andrew Garrett and Grace Davis
Mellophone: Jimmie Rhine and Aaron Mack
Trumpet: Kiera Klein, Trey Brown, and Sanders Hillburn
Trombone: Brendan Frazier and Julie Osorto
Euphonium: Logan Jones
Sousaphone: Katie Rodriguez and Avery Langston
Percussion: Adam Chasteen and Allison Spears
Color Guard: Rachel Jacobs and Brianna Dawson
Properties/Uniform Manager: Julie Osorto
Equipment Crew Manager: Hunter Huffman
Band Librarian: Tess Butler
Instrument Managers: Jacob Stover and Brendan Frazier