FAMU’s “incomparable” Marching 100 danced and chanted down a bright yellow runway Thursday in one of the main courtyards of the Louvre Museum as it played at the Louis Vuitton Men’s Fashion Show in Paris.
The band’s flag corp was decked in Louis Vuitton attire, wearing purple and yellow designer tops over a white ensemble. The rest of the band wore their FAMU uniforms as they all performed at the opening of the show.
Big names sat on the sidelines and watched as the Marching 100 strutted their stuff. Celebrities included rapper Kendrick Lamar, model Naomi Campbell and fashion designer Jerry Lorenzo, who graduated from FAMU in 2000.
After the opening, Lamar performed while models walked the runway wearing Louis Vuitton Men’s Spring-Summer 2023 Collection. The Marching 100 came back for a second appearance to close out the show with the band’s trademark high energy style.
The Marching 100, under the direction of music profess, which was streamed internationally.
Before the live performance, a cinematic prelude video, titled “Strange Math” and featuring the Marching 100, was presented. It explored the relationship between imagination and reality, according to the Louis Vuitton company.
The Louis Vuitton Instagram page described the set-up of the fashion show as a “magnified playground” with a runway constructed to look like a giant toy racetrack.
The live performance was streamed on the Louis Vuitton website and on Instagram Live. A FAMU alumna in the comments on Instagram wrote, “I just can’t stop listening. So happy LV thought of FAMU for this special moment.”
The comments were also flooded with orange and green heart emojis to represent FAMU’s colors and snake emojis to represent Rattlers.
On Facebook, FAMU alumnus Stan Johnson commented, “I cannot be more proud to be a Rattler! Thank you for representing our culture so well.”
Following the performance, the university’s Twitter page retweeted posts of its students and alumni as they celebrate the band’s worldwide appearance.
The Marching 100’s hard work pays off
Ever since Chipman received Louis Vuitton’s invitation on May 31, the band members and staff have been busy at work.
The students will flying home with more than unforgettable memories. According to the appearance contract, each of the band members will receive a “net salary” of approximately $520, or a total of $18,200 for the 35 performers from We Love Art, the producing company that sponsored the trip.
WLA also paid $78,560 to cover the Marching 100’s production costs, which included $3,000 for Chipman and $3,000 for FAMU Assistant Director of Marching and Pep Bands Darryl Baker.
“The opportunity to perform in this epic moment in Paris, France during the Louis Vuitton Fashion Show is truly another major accomplishment and adds to our strong legacy of excellence,” Chipman said in a release this week. “It speaks to the amazing talent we have in the Incomparable Marching 100.”
The band and staff will be flying back to the U.S. on Friday.
Watch a replay of the performance:
Contact Tarah Jean at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on twitter @tarahjean_.