The Band will refuse to play at Commencement if the University denies members their board for a three-day rehearsal period before graduation week begins, Manager Paul B. Finney '50 said last night.
This was the outcome of a special hour-long Band meeting yesterday with Associate Dean Robert B. Watson '37 at which Watson told the Band that the University would provide rooms until the end of Commencement, would pay board expenses from Sunday, June 19 through Thursday, June 23, but would be unable to pay for meals on the three-day rehearsal period the Band has scheduled before commencement week opens.
After hearing Watson and Finney present both sides of the case, the Band in a near-unanimous vote put itself on record as unwilling to play at any of its seven Commencement engagements unless board were granted for the three days in question.
Watson said that if the Band refused to play, the University would be forced to hire a professional union band in its place. It has only been for the past two years that the Band has performed at graduation; before then professional outfits provided music.
Won't "Pay to Play"
Finney explained last night that the Band "wants very much to play at Commencement but will not pay to play."
He pointed out that not only is the Band trying to put all possible funds toward its projected trip to Stanford, but that many of the individual Band members would be unable to afford the three days' meals.
Actually only about 30 men outside of the local area are expected to join the Band's commencement group, but Treasurer Paul A. Lucey '51 estimated last night that the three-day board expenses for the 25 Band members would total approximately $200.
Watson indicated last night that the University's decision may not be final. Finney plans to meet today with the Committee for Commencement Expenses.