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December 3, 2003

Purdue's Rockettes to kick at 'Holiday Cheer & All That Jazz'

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – In New York City, the holidays aren't complete without the Rockettes delivering their famed kick line in the Radio City Music Hall show.

That tradition comes alive, with a Purdue twist, when members of the "All-American" Marching Band's Golduster dance/pom squad transform themselves into Rockettes for "Holiday Cheer & All That Jazz" at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 12, in Loeb Playhouse. Admission is free.

This marks the third year the American Music Review and Purdue Jazz Band have staged their popular holiday show, which mixes big band and jazz arrangements of holiday music with other upbeat tunes. It's the first year for the Rockettes, who will be dressed in fur-trimmed red velvet dance dresses with matching Santa hats.

"It was a natural evolution that the Goldusters, who come to Purdue with extensive high school dance experience, should come off the gridiron and onto the stage to do their kicks," says Kathy Matter, publicist for the band department.

Shortly after the group was formed in the 1970s, the girls were dubbed the "Rockettes of the Gridiron." But without a holiday show, they never had a chance to take their talents on stage.

The 2003 dance/pom squad will perform with the American Music Review. The concert will also feature vocal numbers along with all-instrumental works. Some of the holiday tunes included in the program are "Deck the Halls," "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" and "Auld Lang Syne."

Jazz band director M.T. "Mo" Trout says his band looks forward to having fun with Christmas tunes.

"Look for trombone antics in 'God Rest Ye Merry Trombones,'" he says. "Likewise, 'Good King Wenceslas and His Merry Band' is a wild romp. It just goes nuts in places," he adds.

Hanukkah also gets a musical nod during the Jazz Band's show with a "Hanukkah Swings" medley of standard Jewish holiday tunes – "Who Can Retell," "Oh Hanukkah" and "The Dreidel Song."

For more information on this or other performances, call (765) 496-6785, or visit the bands' Web site.

Writer: Marydell Forbes (765) 496-7704,

Source: Kathy Matter, (765) 496-6785,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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