Q: How do I join the marching band?

A: Submit the interest form (link on homepage) and register for one of the following course sections for 1 credit hour (repeatable up to 8 times):

MUS 1181

WINDS (woodwind/brass) and COLORGUARD: Section 001

PERCUSSION: Section 002

Students should be registered no later than August 1. Grades for the marching band course are based on attendance, performance, and attitude. Specific information about grading can be found in the handbook.

Q: Who can be in marching band? Do I have to be a music major?

A: Anyone can be in the SOTC! The band is made up of a mix of music and non-music majors, and we have had members from almost every major on campus.*

(*Nursing majors can participate in marching band until they start clinicals.)


Q: Are there auditions to be in band?

A: There are no auditions for woodwinds or brass players.  On the first day of band camp, wind players will have an informal assessment with their sections on scales, the UNCP Fight Song, and the halftime show opener.  The music for these songs is in the SOTC Winds Dropbox folder, and students should have this music memorized if possible.

Drumline and colorguard: Click here for audition information.


Q: What is the cost to participate in the marching band?

A: There are no costs associated with joining the SOTC.  Uniforms, housing and meals during band camp, and travel expenses are all paid for by the Department of Music.  In fact, if students complete the season successfully, they will receive a stipend -- this means students can get paid to be in band!


Q: Can you tell me more about stipends?

A: Students who are registered for the marching band class (see Question 1) are eligible to receive stipends at the end of the season.  Stipend amounts go up the longer you participate in marching band, rewarding those students who stay in band throughout their college careers.  The stipends serve as a "thank you" for your service to the university, though if one of the first questions you ask about band is, "How much will I get paid?" the SOTC may not be for you.


Q: Do I have to buy a uniform?

A: No, all uniform parts are provided except socks and shoes.  Students must purchase their own band/guard shoes, though most students are able to continue wearing the shoes they used in high school.  Shoes for the hornline and drumline should be black lace-up marching band shoes with no other markings or colors (NOT tennis shoes); colorguard shoes should be black jazz-style shoes that can be used outside.  Appropriate shoes can be purchased from several online locations for around $35.


Q: Do I need my own instrument?

A: All marching brass (mellophones, marching baritones, and sousaphones), percussion, and colorguard equipment are provided.  Other instruments are available to check out through the Music Resource Center (music library) if needed.


Q: Will I have time for marching band?

A: Weekly rehearsals are scheduled from 3:35-6:00 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Most football games and performances are on Saturdays, with occasional performances on weekdays. 

Freshmen are sometimes concerned about overloading their schedule their first year; however, many times, if a student does not join band their freshman year, they end up never joining.  It is easier to manage your time if you block out that time from the beginning.  In fact, many students enjoy having a break from rigorous academic classes, getting to be outside, playing music, and being part of a group.


Q: What if I miss a rehearsal?

A: Marching band is a group activity, so missing rehearsal can cause issues for others in the band; however, things happen that are sometimes unavoidable.  Absences due to illness or other circumstances are dealt with on an individual basis.  Many conflicts with other classes on campus can be worked out with communication from the student.  If a student cannot register for marching band because of a conflict with another required class, they should speak to their respective staff member or contact the director. While we generally discourage students from participating in the marching band without being enrolled in the course, we understand that there are situations where this may be necessary. 

Excessive tardies/absences will affect grades and membership in the SOTC.  The attendance policy can be found in the band handbook in Dropbox.


Q: When and where does the marching band perform?

A: The marching band performs at all home football games, usually on Saturdays, and select away games when possible.  The band also performs in exhibition at local marching band competitions, in parades, and for university functions. On average the band performs about 8-10 times a year.


Q: What and when is band camp?

A: One week prior to the first day of classes, we hold our pre-season band camp, where we spend time learning marching basics, music, and drill sets.  The band also prepares for the season and bonds as a group while they settle into campus life.  The detailed band camp schedule is uploaded to Dropbox during the summer.

All SOTC members are required to attend band camp.  Potential conflicts should be communicated as early as possible and will be handled on an individual basis.


Q: What if I plan to march in a drum corps over the summer?

A: Here at UNC Pembroke we understand and appreciate the excitement and education that can come with participating with the world's elite drum and bugle corps.  UNCP marching band members have performed with such corps as The Cadets, Southwind, Magic, Tarheel Sun, Carolina Crown, Teal Sound, Spirit of Atlanta, Pioneer, and Carolina Gold (DCA).  We are willing to help work around camp schedules that do not interfere with university performances.  Students who perform with corps during the same may also be excused from band camp if the tour is still occurring when camp begins (with staff approval).  For more information on drum corps in the United States visit dci.org or dcacorps.org.


Q: Is there early move-in for band camp?

A: Yes, band students get to move in several days earlier than other students.  If you live on campus or in a university-owned apartment, you will receive your key when you check in for band camp.  If you live in an off-campus apartment, you will need to arrange early move-in with the apartment office.


Q: How do I get involved in pep band?

A: Pep band performs at home basketball games starting in the spring semester.  An interest form for pep band will be emailed to all students in November of each year; most pep band members are drawn from the marching band, but it is not required for students to be in marching band to participate in pep band.


Q: Can family members be involved?

A: There is no formal organization for parents/family of band students.  From time to time, we may request a parent's help in an area of their expertise.  Family members are always welcome to attend performances and support the band.


Q: Where can band members find the other rules and regulations for the marching band?

A: The band handbook, which lists all the rules and standards for membership in the band, is available on Dropbox to participating members.


Q: What else do I need to know?

A: Read the marching band handbook.  This serves as the course syllabus and describes our rehearsal procedures and other important aspects of the UNCP athletic bands.