Photo Information

Cpl. Jessica Martinez, supply clerk, United States Marine Band, reviews multiple documents pertaining to supply requests. The supply office oversees the daily purchases of equipment and supplies and manages the inventory. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Skye Davis/Released)

Photo by Cpl. Skye Davis

Behind the Scenes

16 Dec 2015 | Cpl. Skye Davis Marine Barracks

One of the more iconic units at the Barracks is the United States Marine Band. Although they are known worldwide, a lot of work goes on behind the scenes to help contribute to their outstanding concerts.  Some of those sections are the stage crew, supply and administration offices of the United States Marine Band.

The President’s Own  employs a staff of more than 20 full-time support personnel who oversee the daily behind-the-scenes activities of the Marine Band, Marine Chamber Orchestra and Marine Chamber Ensembles.

The stage crew, consisting of 10 Marines, is responsible for loading, transporting and setting-up musical instruments and equipment for more than 500 public performances by The President’s Own in the D.C. metropolitan area and across the nation during tour.

“The change of pace [compared to other units across the Marine Corps] is one of the harder tasks I’ve had to deal with,” said Cpl. Jesse Munoz, stage crew platoon sergeant, U.S Marine Band.  The Marines have to be familiar with each instrument, know where the gear is supposed to go according to the set-up list and get all the gear in place for the performances.

“They already have a lot on their plate, so being here to help them out is pretty important,” said Munoz.

According to a U.S. Marine Band brochure, the Department of Defense divides the continental United States into five touring areas available for the four premier service bands. Regions within these areas are selected approximately one year in advance. Marine Band tours commence in October and conclude in early November. The tour lasts approximately 30 days, with performances in small towns and major cities.

Whenever and wherever the band travels, the stage crew is there to support them. If you miss them setting-up and tearing-down, you will surely see them preparing the stage in between individual performances.

“I went on tour with them last year, traveling from Washington, D.C., to Seattle,” said Cpl. Jordan Dross, stage crew, U.S. Marine Band. “We had to load and unload approximately 17,000 pounds of gear because they played every day.”

To make sure the stage crew has gear to unload and musicians have instruments to play, the band’s supply office oversees the daily purchases of equipment and supplies and manages the inventory.

Everything purchased through supply is important to their every day jobs as a member of the United States Marine Band, said Cpl. Jessica Martinez, supply clerk, U.S. Marine Band. We keep everything organized, maintain spreadsheets, check emails, track orders and make sure payments are made on time.

Like the band supply office the administration office operates behind the scenes making sure the President’s Own is taking care of its own.

The Marines in the admin office are responsible for the processing of all orders, reenlistments, and retirements. They maintain service record books and audit all pay related matters.

“I like that I get to interact with everyone that comes into the office for administrative purposes,” said Lance Cpl. Kimberly Santiago, administrative clerk, U.S. Marine Band.

 “Regardless of what section you fall under in the band, we all work together to complement each other for the same purpose,” said Santiago. “Everybody’s work makes a difference.”