Historically black college marching band criticised for joining Trump inauguration

The marching band of Talladega College, Alabama's oldest private historically black college, will join Trump's inaugural parade on January 20.

The marching band of a historically black liberal arts college in Alabama has been criticised for agreeing to take part in Donald Trump’s inauguration later this month.

Talladega College was founded in 1867 as a school for the former slaves of the local community, making it Alabama’s oldest private historically black college. It was announced on Friday (December 30) that the college’s marching band has accepted an invitation to join the President-elect’s inaugural parade in Washington, D.C. on January 20.

“We were a bit horrified to hear of the invitation,” Shirley Ferrill, a member of Talladega’s Class of 1974, told the Associated Press. “I don’t want my alma mater to give the appearance of supporting him. Ignore, decline or whatever, but please don’t send our band out in our name to do that.”

The marching band’s acceptance of Trump’s invitation has also been criticised on social media.

Trump’s apparently inability to book performers for his inauguration in Washington, D.C. on January 20 has been a hot topic in recent weeks. The President-elect has only been able to secure one artist so far: 2010 America’s Got Talent finalist Jackie Evancho, who is set to perform the US national anthem.

Rebecca Ferguson has confirmed that she has been invited to perform at the inauguration on January 20, but said that she will only accept if she can sing Billie Holiday’s ‘Strange Fruit’.

Trump will be sworn in as US President later this month during the traditional ceremony outside the US Capitol in Washington D.C.. There has been much speculation about which artist, or indeed artists, might perform at the inauguration, with KISS’ Gene Simmons denying earlier this week that he had been invited to play.

Current President Barack Obama invited Beyoncé and Aretha Franklin to perform during his 2009 inauguration.