Roxanne Chalifoux, Villanova's 'crying piccolo player', speaks out

Kevin Kaduk
The Dagger
Roxanne Chalifoux thinks her viral fame is "funny." (Turner/WIP)
Roxanne Chalifoux thinks her viral fame is "funny." (Turner/WIP)

Roxanne Chalifoux, Villanova's crying piccolo player who became an Internet sensation over the weekend, says she's taking her newfound fame "in good spirits."

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Chalifoux spoke with Philadelphia's WIP radio station on Monday morning and said she was crying because she's a senior and it was her last time performing with the school's pep band. She said she was aware the cameras were on her, but that viral fame was the furthest thing from her mind at that moment.

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"I saw myself on the Jumbotron and all i could think about was that my dad was at the game," Chalifoux told WIP's Angelo Cataldi. "I didn't want him to see me crying. Little did I know that it was going to end up all over the Internet and that [my dad seeing me crying] was the least of my worries.

"It's just easy to get emotional, especially when you're a senior. That just changed the game for me."

Chalifoux says she's seen all the jokes on the Internet from a clip of her playing the theme from Titanic to being comforted by Joe Biden  to being yelled at by the music teacher from Whiplash. The inboxes on her social media accounts have been full of producers and reporters trying to find out more about her.

"It doesn't bother me," she said. "I think it's funny."

There's one thing she says she wants people to know: While some people have questioned whether she was actually playing, Chalifoux says the tears did not stop her from performing the song.

Chalifoux says she's over the loss, which resulted in Villanova being the first No. 1-seed eliminated from this year's NCAA tournament.  She was also a drum major during football season and plays the bassoon for Villanova's concert band. After graduating with a degree in biology, she plans to attend optometry  school in the fall and plans to become an eye doctor.

Will she ever play the piccolo again? Chalifoux says she's not sure.

"At least it's so tiny that I could pull it out and play it if I really wanted to," she said.

And she did just that for WIP.

Tear-free, this time.

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Kevin Kaduk is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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