Libertyville High marching band to play in Chicago, London

  • Members of Libertyville High School's Wildcat marching band will perform in Chicago on Saturday and in London on New Year's Day.

    Members of Libertyville High School's Wildcat marching band will perform in Chicago on Saturday and in London on New Year's Day. Courtesy of Libertyville High School

Updated 11/17/2017 4:42 PM

Libertyville High School's marching band will perform at a pair of high-profile holiday events -- including one overseas.

Saturday, the band will march in the BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival tree-lighting parade.


And Jan. 1, the band will march in London's New Year's Day Parade and Festival.

It's the first time the Libertyville High band has performed at either event, band director Adam Gohr said.

"This is a great opportunity to represent our school and our community on a very big stage," Gohr said.

Saturday's procession down Michigan Avenue starts at 5:30 p.m. at Oak Street and runs south to Wacker Drive. Some 1 million decorative lights will activate along the way.

Other suburban acts include Palatine's Bonnie Lindholm School of the Dance, the In Motion Dance school in Long Grove and Deerfield's Center Stage Academy of Dance.

The parade will be televised live on ABC 7 Chicago, and it will be streamed live on the ABC 7 Chicago News app and at

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Band officials applied to perform in the parade and were thrilled to be accepted.

"It's an event we've looked at in the past, but the timing hasn't worked out," Gohr said. "For this year it's a great fit, as the schedule is good with our concert calendar."

Gohr said the gig also is a wonderful warm-up performance ahead of the New Year's Day event in London.

The London parade is set to include more than 10,000 participants, many from the U.S.

The Barrington High School marching band will perform, too, Gohr said.

"They import us since marching band isn't much of a British thing, particularly at the high school level," Gohr said.

More than 500,000 people are expected to watch a live broadcast of the parade.

The Libertyville High band was nominated for the London performance by Lake Zurich High School band director Josh Thompson, Gohr said. The Lake Zurich marching band participated in the 2008 parade.

Libertyville-Vernon Hills Area High School District 128 spokeswoman Mary Todoric said officials are excited the Libertyville High band will share their talent "with the rest of the Chicago area and even the world."

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