For over 150 years, the Nation’s Premier College Marching Band, the Marching Illini has captivated audiences across the nation with spectacular performances and innovative concepts.
THE BEST BAND
IN THE LAND
The unique style of the Marching Illini represents a combination of time-honored traditions and exciting innovations. Whether performing before the home crowd or away, the Marching Illini has held a level of national distinction and a reputation for excellence.
For over 150 years, the Nation’s Premier College Marching Band, the Marching Illini has captivated audiences across the nation with spectacular performances and innovative concepts. The unique style of the Marching Illini represents a combination of time-honored traditions and exciting innovations. Whether performing before the home crowd or away, the Marching Illini has held a level of national distinction and a reputation for excellence that makes them The Best Band In The Land.
Absolutely! The Marching Illini is comprised of the University of Illinois’ best and brightest students. The Marching Illini has one of the highest cumulative GPA’s on campus with students from every academic discipline and major.
Membership in the Marching Illini is open to all students on the Illinois campus who have had high school or collegiate marching band experience. You do not have to be a music major to participate. Members of the Marching Illini represent all academic disciplines on campus, with Engineering representing a large contingent of the membership. We even have graduate students that participate in the world famous Marching Illini!
Current students in the Marching Illini come from the following states:
- New Jersey
YES! There are two “tracks” to be a part of the Marching Illini if you are a student at Parkland College. If you are a Parkland Pathways student, you are considered an Illinois student and can enroll in up to 5 credits each semester at UIUC. You may audition and then register for MUSC 487, Marching Illini. For more information about the Parkland Pathways program, click HERE
If you are solely a Parkland College student, you may audition as long as you register for the class as a non-degree seeking student. To learn more about registering as a non-degree seeking student, click HERE
If you are a first year member and you are playing in one of the spring concert bands, you do not need to re-audition in the spring. If you are a second year or more member, you do not need to complete a spring audition.
The final audition for drumline auditions take place in the Harding Band Building located at 1103 South Sixth Street, Champaign, Illinois 61820. Parking is free on the weekends and after 5:30pm on the weekdays. If auditioning during business hours on a weekday, feed any of the meters around the building. Report to the Illinois Bands Office HBB 140 upon arrival to the historic Harding Band Building.
No worries at all…you may audition on your concert instrument for the Marching Illini audition. If you are chosen to join the Marching Illini in the Fall, we provide all instruments to our members at no charge.
All instruments and equipment are provided by the Marching Illini at no cost to the student. All regular maintenance is covered by the Marching Illini but any additional damage will be the responsibility of the student.
The Marching Illini Preseason Camp takes place on the University of Illinois campus in August – one week before classes begin. All members report at different times depending on their role and year in the band. Visit the Preseason Camp sub-menu option under JOIN for more information.
Preseason camp begins one week before classes begin and consist of full-day rehearsals for the length of the camp, 9 AM – 10 PM. During the fall semester, MI rehearsals are held Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday from 5:00-6:30 PM, Thursday nights from 8:00 – 9:30 PM, and Saturday mornings on game day. Drumline, Illinettes, and Colorguard members rehearse 1-2 additional times per week in sectionals for preparation of Game Day.
Rehearsals are held in historic Harding Band Building, Memorial Stadium, and the Marching Illini practice field located on the corner of First and Gregory.
The Marching Illini is an academic course. 1-3 hours of credit is awarded for participation in the band. All members must enroll in MUSC 487, Marching Illini in order to be an official member.
There are no charges associated with the use of university instruments, uniforms, or music. All members are required to provide the following: black marching shoes, khaki shorts, and some other items. The Marching Illini provides a number of other required items for rehearsal and game day attire. Have no fear, Marching Illini members do not do any fundraising.
The Marching Illini performs at all home games, including post-season bowl games. In addition, the Marching Illini performs at various exhibition performances with the Chicago Bears, Bands of America, and high schools throughout the state and typically one away game each season. All expenses associated with travel are paid for by the Marching Illini.
The Marching Illini performs a new and different show for each home game. Typically, we will perform 7-8 new shows each season.
Unfortunately, we do not offer any scholarships at this time. A Marching Illini Scholarship Endowment has been created and we are in the midst of growing that fund further.
You must complete an audition registration form located on this website under JOIN. All audition information is posted on this page as well so be sure to read through all of this information. If you have any questions about this process, feel free to contact Professor Houser (firstname.lastname@example.org), Director of the Marching Illini or you can always call the Illinois Bands office at 217.333.3025 for more information.