are encouraged to perform in one of the many ensembles which make up the comprehensive University of Illinois Bands program.  We offer a variety of concert bands and we also have a number of instruments which are available to students who perform in our ensembles. You do not need to be a music major to participate in the Illinois Bands program…due to the size of our program, the majority of our alumni are non-music majors!   

Concert ensemble auditions are held during the first week of school each semester. All students (music majors and non-majors) audition at this time for ensembles. The “Advanced Audition” is for placement into the top two bands: Wind Symphony and the Wind Orchestra. The Advanced Audition requires an in person audition based on prepared excerpts. The “Standard Audition” is for placement in our other concert bands: Hindsley Symphonic Band, University Band, and Campus Band.  

Non-music majors may audition for any of our ensembles. Students with All-State Band/Orchestra profile are encouraged to take the Advanced Audition. Students are placed in the top ensembles as a result of these auditions. Those who are not placed, both music majors and non-majors, in the top ensembles (Wind Symphony, Wind Orchestra) must then participate in the “Standard audition” in the following days in order to be placed in one of the other bands. The School of Music website has more information about the Advanced and Standard auditions, including required excerpts.


Those accepted to the University of Illinois School of Music must go through the Advanced Auditions, not the Standard Audition.