Wildcat Marching Band FAQ

Closeup photo of UK seal on the sleeve of a uniform coat

Do I have to be a music major to be in the marching band?

No! In fact, only about one-third of the band are music majors. The rest are students with majors which run the gamut from biology to linguistics, and hospitality management to psychology. As the band continues to grow, the percentage of students who aren't music majors will grow too.


I will be attending BCTC. Can I still march with the WMB?

Yes! Any UK or Bluegrass KCTC student, regardless of major, is eligible for membership.


Can it be taken for credit?

Yes! Marching Band (MUC 190) earns one credit per semester. This credit may be used as an elective in any degree program.


When does the band rehearse?

The marching band rehearses M-W-F from 5 pm - 7 pm. No "extra" rehearsals are scheduled.


Will I have enough time to participate in marching band as a freshman?

Yes! On the average, the WMB only rehearses 6 hours per week, which is often LESS time than students spent rehearsing in their high school bands. We are able to work around class conflicts with rehearsals. And the WMB as a whole maintains a better than 3.0 GPA!


What does it cost? Will I need to do fundraisers to be in the WMB?

The costs of participating in the marching band are minimal. In fact, most students pay more for books for a single class than they pay for marching band supplies. Students are responsible for the cost of basic supplies (shoes, gloves, flip folder/lyre, polo shirt and uniform undershirt). Members of the Color Guard and Sweetheart Majorettes have separate costs associated with those auxiliary units. Although students do not receive a stipend for participating in the marching band, the University Band Office covers most of the costs - meals during early week, travel expenses (bus, hotel, food), uniform cleaning fees, and instrument cleaning for school owned instruments. UK Band members do no fundraising!


What is the difference between the WMB and my high school band?

There are no competitions for college bands, so our main goals are to entertain the audience and support the UK athletic teams. We perform 5-6 different halftime shows each year, with music ranging from jazz to rock to pop and hip-hop. If you think you've had enough of marching band, you'll find the WMB to be an exciting change of pace!


Are there scholarships available to members of the marching band?

Music scholarships are available to students of any major, and are awarded through the performance studios in the School of Music. These scholarships are most often awarded to music majors, but not exclusively. Auditions for scholarships take place in February and March. Students interested in a scholarship are encouraged to contact the professor of their instrument during the fall semester of the year prior to their admittance to UK. A list of faculty can be found on our Faculty/Staff page.


There are also a very limited number of scholarships that are awarded each year to returning members of the WMB. These scholarships are available to non-majors.


Do I have to audition to be in the band?

An audition is required of all new members to the WMB. However, you shouldn't stress about it. We want to know how you play, spin or twirl, and it gives you a chance to meet our staff and ask any questions you might have before you get to campus in the fall. We like to get to know our students personally, and a face-to-face audition helps us do that. Click here to visit the WMB audition page for more information.


Do you have a band camp?

"Early Week," as UK's band camp is called, is held a week and a half before classes begin and includes extensive training in marching and playing at the college level. In addition to regular rehearsals, there are lots of social acitivities planned throughout the week to give students a chance to relax and meet their new friends! Those students who have been assigned a dorm room can move in early at no charge. The band provides all meals. The band's early arrival on campus provides each individual an opportunity to get settled in the dorms, buy books, make new friends, and adjust to a new environment and a new independence before classes begin.


Does the band travel?

Yes! The band sends a select Pep Band to every away game and the entire band travels to one away game. We have also gone on post season bowl trips for each of the past four years! Travel expenses such as transportation, lodging, and meals are provided by the University of Kentucky. There is no cost to the band members.


How do I participate in the Basketball Pep Band?

You must be a member in good standing of the Wildcat Marching Band to participate in the UK Pep Band. No audition is necessary for woodwinds and brass; percussionists may audition for a spot on drum set. Auditions to determine membership in the NCAA tournament road bands are held during the spring semester. For more information, visit the UK Pep Band page.


Would you like more information on the Wildcat Marching Band?

For more information, please contact the UK Band Office (859-257-BAND), or email the Wildcat Marching Band.