Nebraska Band Interest

We are thrilled you are interested in the Nebraska Band Program!

The Glenn Korff School of Music at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln enthusiastically invites all students, regardless of academic major, to participate in one or more of our bands. We have a wide range of ensembles so that you can find something that will fit your academic life.

No doubt, a new student can be both excited and a little nervous about the huge array of activities and responsibilities that could await you in Lincoln. Don't worry. Perhaps the best way to make a place for yourself is to continue some of your favorite activities with a new group of people. Feeling at home in the band room never really goes away even though the room might change. All of the band directors and staff at the University are hoping that you will take advantage of the fact that we have a band room here. With seven bands to choose from we definitely have a place for you.

We also have camps and festivals geared for both middle and high school students. Festivals usually take place during the school year. Camps are scheduled for the summer.

Check out the Doug and Tony Show video links below to learn more about our program.

You Tube Video - Part 1: Who We Are

You Tube Video - Part 2: Cornhusker Marching Band

You Tube Video - Part 3: Cornhusker Marching Band Auditions

You Tube Video - Part 4: Big Red Express

You Tube Video - Part 5: Concert and Jazz Bands plus Camps and Festivals

Information Request Form

The Cornhusker Marching Band

Founded in 1879, The University of Nebraska Cornhusker Marching Band is a group of dedicated marching musicians who carry on the proud tradition of excellence that has been upheld and handed down for over 135 years. The Pride of All Nebraska is one of the top and best-known collegiate bands in the country and is one of the few college bands to have performed at every major bowl game. The 300-piece ensemble includes woodwinds, brass, percussion (battery and front ensemble), color guard and twirlers.

Over 60 academic majors from across campus are represented in the Cornhusker Marching Band and students of all majors are encouraged to audition. There are two rounds of auditions: the first round takes place in May and the final round takes place before classes begin in August.

Go to marching band audition information

The Big Red Express

The Big Red Express is a group of 120 musicians whose mission is to provide spirit and entertainment at volleyball, and men's and women's basketball games during the fall and spring semesters. It is the responsibility of Big Red Express members to be the ultimate fan displaying outstanding sportsmanship, excellent musicianship and loyalty to the teams at all times. Each Big Red Express member receives a scholarship for participation in good standing.

Membership in Big Red Express is determined by audition, and music majors as well as non-majors are encouraged to try out. Auditions are held in the spring.

Go to Big Red Express audition information

The Wind Ensemble

The University of Nebraska Wind Ensemble.

The Wind Ensemble is the University's premiere concert band. Its select mission is to provide instrumentalists of advanced technical proficiency a pre-professional ensemble experience. With an emphasis on 20th century American compositions, the Wind Ensemble's repertoire reflects the most recent compositions, as well as the rich tradition of wind and percussion music extending back to the Renaissance. The objectives of the Wind Ensemble are to rehearse and perform repertoire of the highest caliber, encompassing the broadest possible spectrum of styles to develop a high degree of refinement and independence in students' technique.

Membership in the Wind Ensemble is determined by audition each semester, and music majors as well as non-majors are encouraged to audition.

Go to concert ensemble audition information

The Symphonic Band

The Symphonic Band has the distinction of being the band program's top symphonic ensemble. The Symphonic Band's repertoire is chosen from the rich resources of the wind band tradition. The objectives of the Symphonic Band are to rehearse and perform repertoire of a symphonic nature, including high-quality transcriptions, large-scale works, and the best pieces composed for more than one player per part; to develop and nurture the fundamental skills necessary to perform repertoire of the highest caliber; to actively involve students in the creative process through commissioning projects; and to motivate and inform music educators and aspiring teachers through innovative programming, skillful rehearsing, and inspiring performing.

Membership in the Symphonic Band is determined by audition each semester, and music majors as well as non-majors are encouraged to audition.

Go to concert ensemble audition information

The University of Nebraska Symphonic Band.

The Campus Bands

The Campus Band is the university's largest concert band. Its select mission is to provide a high quality performance venue for musicians representing a wide array of musical backgrounds and major fields of study within the university. The objectives of the Campus Band are to provide an opportunity for instrumentalists of diverse abilities and interests an opportunity to perform quality literature, and to hone their technical and musical skills through the rehearsal process; to provide a laboratory environment for music education students to gain vital performance experience on secondary instruments; to encourage members of the university's athletic bands to maintain a high level of musical activity throughout the year; and to serve as a resource for music educators and aspiring teachers through the study and performance of high quality repertoire appropriate for developing ensembles.

The Campus Band rehearses and performs in the spring semester only. The two sections of Campus Band rehearse one night a week, either on Tuesdays or on Thursdays, from 6:30 to 8:20. Membership in the Campus Band is open to any member of the university community, and music majors as well as non-majors are encouraged to join. There is no audition required. Contact Douglas Bush or contact the Band Office (Westbrook Music Building, room 101, 402-472-2505) for additional information.

The University of Nebraska Campus Band.

Important Facts

  • There are approximately 475 students involved in the band program each year.
  • About 75% of the students in the band program are NOT music majors.
  • There are more than 90 different academic majors represented in the various bands.
  • The vast majority of people involved in bands on campus participate in more than one, or for more than one semester.
  • The college band scene is different from most high school programs, so if you're feeling burnt out give it a try; you will appreciate the change of atmosphere.
  • Instruments are available from the Glenn Korff School of Music if you don't have your own.
  • Each band is considered a class for which you register (1 credit hour); registering for band before auditions is a good idea as it clears the rehearsal time in your schedule.  Then if you don't make it or choose another group it is a simple procedure to drop and add.
  • The word audition is often a scary one; rest assured that the process is as user-friendly as we can possibly make it.  We're nice people who really want you to be involved so don't be shy.
  • The ensembles of the University band program perform for more than one million people each year; we are one of the largest and most active programs on campus.

Graduate Program in Conducting

Applicants to the wind band conducting program should be individuals who wish to join a community of scholars, performers and pedagogues dedicated to the study and practice of band conducting as an applied performance medium. Enrollment in the wind band conducting studio is intentionally limited and auditions are competitive. Typically, the studio includes three students (a variable combination of MM and DMA candidates), therefore a high degree of musicianship, scholarship, and professionalism, as well as an engaging interpersonal style are essential. The objective of the program is to develop skillful, expressive conductors who are prepared to succeed in both professional and academic settings.

The Glenn Korff School of Music offers a Master of Music and Doctor of Music in choral conducting. Students are engaged through thorough and varied activities to further their craft, the choral art, and their careers. Most importantly, classes, rehearsals, research, labs, and activities will continue to "sharpen the ax" of the conductor.

Graduate Program in Conducting

Camps and Festivals

The Winter Festival

The Winter Festival is a unique concert band and chamber ensemble festival for high school students. The festival is designed to give participants an outstanding and comprehensive playing experience. Festival participants are chosen through a recorded audition process. Students attending the festival are involved in three different ensembles: an honor band; a chamber ensemble coached by one of the Glenn Korff School of Music's talented applied wind and percussion faculty; and a large symphonic band that combines the festival honor band with the University Wind Ensemble. Students also participate in a masterclass with the applied wind and percussion faculty.

Go to Winter Festival information page

The Middle School Band Camp

The focus of the camp is improvisation with opportunities for all students to both lead and follow. A part of the camp experience will involve large ensemble performance, we intend to rotate part assignments to give the campers a broader spectrum of experiences. Our goal is to provide the most useful information to students of a broad spectrum of ability levels. The more advanced students will have as much chance to grow and improve as the least experienced. The first order of the day will be to teach the students how to practice effectively. We believe this system is more in keeping with a middle school summer camp atmosphere. The camp is for woodwind, brass and percussion students entering the 6th grade through leaving the 8th grade.

Go to the Middle School Band Camp page

The Cornhusker Summer Marching Band Camp

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln Cornhusker Summer Marching Band Camp fosters leadership, marching fundamentals, and performance skills in all areas of the high school marching band. Participants receive intensive instruction from clinicians on an individual and group basis. The age range of campers is students entering the 9th grade through leaving 12th grade (including graduates).

Go to the Cornhusker Summer Marching Band Camp page

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