College of Arts and Humanities

Clemson University Symphonic Band to pay tribute to former Director of Bands


The Clemson University Symphonic Band, conducted by Professor and Director of Bands Mark Spede, will perform a concert on March 12 at 7:30 p.m. in tribute to former Director of Bands John Butler. The concert, held at the Brooks Center for the Performing Arts, will consist of music Butler conducted with the band between 1964 and 1978.

“For this concert, I went to the archives in Strom Thurmond Institute and looked at all the concert programs while Butler was director and talked to many of his students about the kind of music he liked,” Spede said. “Some of the pieces resonated with me, and some appeared multiple times.”

With that in mind, Spede has put together a program that includes John Williams’s music from the film “Star Wars,” Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture,” and Clemson staple, “Tiger Rag.” Spede also took care to include Butler’s own arrangement of Debussy’s romantic piano piece, “Clair de Lune.”

A Lasting Legacy

Butler’s career at Clemson was distinguished by his leadership in various roles over 27 years. Serving as the director of Tiger Band for six years and as director of bands for two decades, he left a lasting impact on the University’s musical programs. His retirement in 1987 marked the culmination of a lengthy and impactful career at Clemson.

Tickets are only $5 for adults and free for Clemson students with CUID. Tickets can be purchased on the Brooks Center’s website, by phone at 864-656-7787, or in person. The box office is open Monday-Friday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m, as well as 90 minutes before each performance.

Want to Discuss?

Get in touch and we will connect you with the author or another expert.

Or email us at

    This form is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.