Join the Band
Tradition is an important part of Big Ten universities. The Pride of Minnesota has been bringing spirit, color, and music to campus for over 125 years. We would love for you to become a part of the band's life and experience the pageantry, excitement, and dedication to excellence for yourself.
Never marched before? We'll teach you!
Not a music major? Neither are 95% of our members.
Worried about the time commitment? With nearly every major represented in our current band, let us know your area of interest. We will have a student contact you and let you know how it works with your upcoming course of study.
The School of Music also supports athletic pep bands that play at a variety of regular season and post-season athletic events.
Prospective members are invited to contact us for more information about the program. Members of the band staff, including the directors, graduate assistants, and current members, will be happy to answer your questions by phone or in person. Students who plan on visiting the Twin Cities campus and who would like to meet with a member of the Marching Band staff member or student should schedule an appointment.
If you would like to learn more about joining the Minnesota Marching Band and join us in 2017, please complete the Marching Band Interest form.
Not a U of M student?
You do not have to be a U of M student to participate. Part-time students or students attending other metro-area schools can take Marching Band as an extension course by contacting:
College of Continuing Education
20 Ruttan Hall
1994 Buford Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55108
612-624-4000 or 1-800-234-6564
High school students who wish to join the Minnesota Marching Band through post-secondary option (PSEO) programs should contact their high school counselor for further information.
Marching band season officially begins with Spat Camp, the ten-day training period that starts in late August and ends on Labor Day weekend. When fall semester classes begin, the band meets Monday through Thursday from 4:15–6:00 p.m. Additional rehearsals are held on Friday evenings (6:30–8:30 p.m.) and Saturday mornings before all home football games. The rehearsals avoid conflicts with most classes and allow residence hall students ample time to attend evening meals.
Spat Camp, the intensive, in-residence preparation camp where students learn music and marching fundamentals, marks the official start of marching band season. Students reside in one of the East Bank residence halls during Spat Camp. Registration materials are emailed early June to prospective members currently on the Marching Band recruiting list. A nominal fee covers the cost of housing, meals, and social activities during camp. Please email or call the Ensemble Office at 612-624-2514 or 612-624-6873 if you need registration materials or have questions.
Marching Band students with residence hall contracts may move into their own rooms on Sunday, August 27. The Marching Band office staff will assist residence hall students with arrangements for early move-in.
Drumline auditions for fall of 2017 have closed. Please consider auditioning for a pep band at the beginning of September this fall. This will give you an invaluable experience to prepare for your audition next year.
Learn more about the University of Minnesota Drumline.
Woodwinds and Brass
Woodwind and Brass players must submit an audition video which is DUE BY JUNE 30. This video can be on DVD, emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org as an attached (.mov, .wmv, .m4v), posted on a personal YouTube site, or shared via Google Drive.
The audition consists of a chromatic scale ascending and descending that showcases your playable range, your favorite major scale 2 octaves ascending and descending, and a part (1st, 2nd, or 3rd – you select) from "Minnesota March," and "Minnesota Rouser." Find music at z.umn.edu/umpepbands.
If you would like, you may also include another selection that helps display your talents (i.e. a prepared piece from solo and ensemble contests). One bit of advice: don't point directly at your microphone. This distorts the sound on your recording unless you have a good external microphone.
We plan to release our roster by Friday, July 14, 2017. We will also use audition recordings to make part assignment which helps us prepare for the season. We have a busy front part of the season, with the first game on the Thursday before classes begin. Once the roster is set, we will send PDFs of music for you to begin practicing.
Color Guard auditions are in two parts. The first part is a video audition which is due with your Spat Camp application information. This video can be on DVD, emailed to email@example.com as an attached (.mov, .wmv, .m4v), or posted on a personal YouTube site. Please visit the audition page to view the audition requirements.
The second part of the audition is an in-person Color Guard Camp from August 10-13, 2017. If you are unable to join us for those dates, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible to make alternative audition plans. Students who submit their video audition will be invited to participate in additional (optional) rehearsals prior to the Color Guard Camp.
To register for an audition, please email Aimee Barmore at email@example.com or call 612-237-4580 and with your contact information, twirling resume, your audition video and a twirling photograph. Additionally, please include an essay in 500 words or less, telling us why you would like to be a part of the University of Minnesota Marching Band. View our twirler audition guide to learn more.
Registration and Freshman Orientation
New students must attend University orientation before Spat Camp begins. Students who are assigned orientation dates during the Spat Camp period should contact their college representative and ask to have their orientation rescheduled. You should register for MUS 3480 which carries two academic credits. Part-time students can register through the College of Continuing Education and Extension. Please call 612-625-3333 for more information. Spat Camp registration materials will be mailed to all interested students in early June. For more information call the Ensemble Office at 612-624-6873.
Homecoming weekend festivities include a bonfire, coronation, and pepfest on Friday, and rehearsal, parade, and game on Saturday. The Annual Indoor Concerts at Northrop Memorial Auditorium offer Marching Band fans the opportunity to enjoy the band's lively and spirited performances up close. Each year the band also performs at least one special concert off campus. Various events such as Band Parents' Day and the annual Marching Band Banquet bring marching band members together.