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Woodwind, Brass, and Percussion Ensemble Auditions

All students regardless of major are welcome to audition for all major ensembles.

Concert Ensembles

Unified Ensemble Auditions include: Wind Symphony, Symphonic Winds, Symphonic Band, and Symphony Orchestra

Unified and Symphonic Band Only auditions are held at the same times. Students auditioning in Woodwind, Brass, Percussion Unified Ensemble Auditions will be considered for all major ensembles. All students regardless of major are welcome to audition for all major ensembles and must prepare all provided excerpts.

Music majors are required to participate in the Unified Ensemble Auditions.

Email Dr. Marinello with any questions or concerns.

Audition Materials

Required excerpts, lead sheets, and other materials will be available for download with a University login. Excerpts will be available no later than December 15.

Prepare for your audition

Complete the online survey by Monday, January 8, 2024 to notify us of your plans to audition for a concert ensemble.

  • Woodwind and Brass Audition Dates

    Auditions are held in Julian Hall (rooms TBA).

    Friday, January 12, 2024

    Saturday, January 13, 2024

  • Percussion Audition Dates

    Auditions are held in Cook Hall 103.

    Students should arrive 30 minutes before their audition block to check-in and sign up for an audition letter with proctor. Students can then use assigned room(s) as a warm up/practice room. Students are asked to stay in warm up room until they have completed their audition.

 

Symphonic Band Only

Students who are not music majors and are looking for a slightly lighter time commitment have the option of auditioning only for the Symphonic Band. Symphonic Band Only auditions are held at the same time as Unified Ensemble auditions.

Woodwind and Brass students participating in Symphonic Band Only auditions will need to prepare excerpts as indicated in the Audition Materials Packet under "SYMPHONIC BAND ONLY."

Percussion students participating in Symphonic Band Only auditions will need to email Dr. Ben Stiers to set up an individual audition. 

Music Majors are not permitted to use the Symphonic Band Only audition option.

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Athletic Bands

Big Red Marching Machine (BRMM), Pep Band, and ISU Drumlines

Everyone is welcome to participate in an Athletic Band Ensemble! Most students do not need to audition for membership. Participating students are given parts based on skill level. Auditions are required for percussionists and those who wish to be considered for the Redline Express Dance Team, Color Guard, or Twirlers.

  • Big Red Marching Machine (BRMM)

    No auditions are required for woodwind, brass, or cymbals. The BRMM Drumline requires auditions for snare drum, tenors, and bass drums.

    Students who wish to be considered for BRMM auxiliary teams should follow the instructions associated with their area of interest below.

    Fill out the Online Membership Form no later than July 17 to reserve your spot and be eligible for early move-in to the residence halls. (Requires an active ULID and password.)

    Once you are enrolled in the course, you will receive a welcome packet in your Illinois State email in late July. This packet provides significant details and instruction for the next steps needed to participate. Please read it carefully, and follow the enclosed directions.

    Color Guard

    Interested students should complete the Color Guard Audition Registration Form no later than April 24, 2023 by 5:00 pm. Video submissions should be submitted through the registration form.

    Color Guard Coach
    Nicole Schneyr
    naschn1@IllinoisState.edu 

    Drumline

    Interested students should complete the Drumline Audition Registration Form no later than April 1, 2023 by 5:00 pm.

    Drumline Instructor
    Lauren Bobarsky
    lbobars@IllinoisState.edu

    Redline Express Dance Team

    Interested students should complete the Redline Express Audition Registration Form no later than April 15, 2023 by 5:00 pm

    Redline Express Dance Team Coach
    Jessica Riss-Waltrip
    jjriss@IllinoisState.edu

    Twirlers

    Video submissions are due via e-mail by May 1, 2023 by 5:00 pm.

    Twirler Coach
    Amanda Heyden
    amheyde@gmail.com

  • Pep Band

    Any student who participates in any other Illinois State University Band during the academic year may participate in Pep Band. Email TJ Mack with questions.

  • BRMM Drumline

    Snare, Tenor, and Bass Drums

    Information for Fall 2023 auditions will be released in Spring 2023.

     

  • Basketball Drumline

    Snare, Tenor, and Bass Drums

    Information for Spring 2023 will be available in October 2022.
    Email TJ Mack with questions.

Jazz Ensembles

Saxophone, trumpet, trombone, guitar, piano, bass, drums, and vibraphone

Membership is by audition only and is open to all Illinois State University students regardless of major.

Previous experience with improvisation is not a requirement for participation. 

All students interested in participating in a jazz ensemble or combo must audition prior to the first day of classes.

If you are interested but unable to audition during the allotted times, please contact Professor Tom Marko to set up an alternate time as soon as possible.

Audition Materials

Required audition materials, such as lead sheets, excerpts, and chord progressions are available for download with a University login.

Prepare for your audition

Audition Dates

Auditions will be held in Cook Hall room 305.

  • Sunday, January 14, 2024
    3 to 8 p.m.

Audition Requirements

Pitch and tone quality, accurate rhythms, and jazz style (articulation, time feel, etc.) will be considered at all auditions.

  • Saxophone, Trumpet, and Trombone

    • Short sight-reading example
    • Prepared excerpt (download)

    Optional:

    • Improvisation outlining the chord progression to Concert F or Bb blues (as indicated on lead sheet available for download)
    • If you wish to perform a prepared piece, a bebop head (melody) such as Au Privave, Billie’s Bounce, or Anthropology is appropriate.
  • Piano, Guitar, and Vibes

    • One or two short sight-reading examples
    • Prepared excerpt (download)
    • Compare two choruses, and play improvised solo for two choruses over blues in F or Bb (please use the chord progression provided for download)

    Optional:

    • Prepared piece: most any jazz standard such as Autumn Leaves, My Romance, Blue Bossa, Body and Soul, etc.
  • Bass

    • One or two short sight-reading examples
    • Walk two choruses over a blues in F or Bb — you may choose key (lead sheet provided)
    • Prepared excerpt (download)

    Optional:

    • Improvisation outlining the chord progression to Concert F or Bb blues (as indicated on lead sheet available for download)
    • Prepared piece: most any jazz standard such as Autumn Leaves, My Romance, Blue Bossa, Body and Soul, etc.
  • Drums

    • Demonstrate the following styles: Medium Swing, Up-tempo Swing, Jazz Waltz, Bossa Nova, Samba, Mambo, funk/rock
    • Trade "Fours" in a medium and up-tempo swing style
    • Short sight-reading example of a big band composition
    • Prepared excerpt (download)