Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to be a music major to be in the marching band? No. There are over 50 different majors represented in the GSMB. In fact, the band is approximately 80% non-music majors.
Do you have to audition to be in the marching band? The Drumline auditions for part placement on snares, tenors, basses, and cymbals, otherwise no audition is required for band members to be in the marching band. We also hold a basic audition for Color Guard. Don't worry; we will work with you if you don't have much experience with flags or rifles.
What if I've never marched before, or only parade marched? Not a big deal. There are many people in the band who have never stepped foot on a football field. We all meet a week before classes begin so everyone can learn the basics of field marching. We also do a little parade marching, but everyone learns how.
Are Minnesota State University-Moorhead and Concordia College students able to be in marching band? Yes. We welcome any students from MSUM and Concordia, since they do not have marching bands. In past years many band members have come from these colleges. Students are able to get credit through the Tri-College program.
How much time does marching band take? We meet three times a week; Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, from 4:00 pm to 5:45 pm during the semester. We hold a marching band camp one week before classes begin to learn marching fundamentals and start learning our shows for the upcoming season. This also allows you to move into your dorm before everyone else does!
What if I don't play an instrument, but still want to be in marching band? The GSMB has a Color Guard for those who don't play or don't want to play an instrument. As mentioned, the Color Guard holds a tryout in order to assess the potential members' skills. They are willing to teach any person, regardless if they have no experience. In recent years the band has also had baton twirlers. The GSMB has a front line (pit). Any person wanting to play mallet percussion or other non-marching equipment can still be a part of the band.
What kind of music does the Gold Star Marching Band play? The Gold Star Marching Band usually plays anywhere from three to four shows a season and range in a variety from Southern Rock, Latin, and movie themes, to shows such as Guitar Hero and Journey. The 2008 and 2009 seasons featured the local funk band Post-Traumatic Funk Syndrome with the Gold Star Marching Band in a Super Bowl styled halftime show. In the 2019 and 2020 season, the band played a Panic! at the Disco show as well as shows with music by Queen and other famous artists. Click the YouTube button at the bottom of this page to visit our channel to see what we we have been up to the past several years!
What fees are associated with marching band? There is no yearly band fee. First time band members are to pay for their shoes and a band t-shirt and polo, as well as any returning members that need replacements.
Why should I be in marching band? Marching band is a very fun experience. The Gold Star Marching Band is one of the largest student organizations on campus, but still maintains a "family" atmosphere with opportunities to make friendships and memories that last a lifetime. Here are just some of the benefits of being in marching band: you meet nearly 200 people before classes even start, you get to move in to the dorms before the mad rush of everyone else moving in, you are a part of the NDSU football games and perform in front of nearly 20,000 fans a game. There usually is an away game to go to as a band, you are compensated with a stipend for your time, but most of all any band member will tell you it is fun!
I am going to be in band! Now what do I do? Ready to join the Pride of North Dakota? Great! If you're just curious about band and have some questions fill out the inquiry form at the bottom of this page. If you are a "for sure" incoming band member, all you have to do is 1. Register for MUSC 111 2. Fill out the "New Member Registration Form" on our Information Forms page 3. Come ready in August for band camp! If you have questions about camp, visit the Band Camp page under the Members Only section.
If you have any more questions, please full out the inquiry form below and we will answer as soon as possible!