The Bearcat Bands are a comprehensive campus band program providing educational opportunities, artistic expression, and leadership development programs to students through music.
What We Offer
Ensembles of the Bearcat Bands include the 250-member spirit band program (Marching Band and multiple Basketball Bands), multiple Concert Bands, Jazz Ensembles, various Brass, Woodwind, and Percussion Ensembles, beginning instrumental lessons, and various educational clinics. Our Marching Band integrates a contemporary Color Guard and Twirlers. We achieve tradition through innovation and are passionate about our band, campus, and city. Our membership is open to every enrolled student at the University of Cincinnati and satellite campuses as well as students attending Greater Cincinnati Collegiate Connection schools. Participation in the program is by placement audition. We have opportunities for everyone: those with considerable experience, those with none, and those in between.
The Bearcat Bands provide access to musical excellence and create an educated, informed citizenry deeply connected to their humanity.
For the University of Cincinnati to be the most musical campus in the United States.
We value pedagogy because we welcome all students with a desire to be taught according to educational best practices in an innovative environment.
We value integrity because we welcome all students that are morally, ethically, and legally upright.
We value precision because our mutual success is considerably determined by how well each individual prepares and presents.
A Few Points of Pride
- The UC Marching Band has been a coeducational organization since World War 2, having consistently remained co-ed ever since.
- Commissioned compositions for concert band by our Theta chapter of Tau Beta Sigma
- UC Men of Metro Spirit Cup Award Recipient, 2017-present
- Bands of America exhibition performances by Marching Band
- 2018 Super Regional
- 2015 Grand Nationals
- 2012 Regional
- 2011 Regional
- 2004 Regional
- 1998 Regional (host)
- 1996 Regional (host)
- 1995 Regional (host)
- Alumni Band: UC Alumni Association's 2016-17 Constituent Network of the Year Award recipient
- Twirl Mania 2016 Collegiate Classic 3rd Place
- PASIC 2014 Drumline Battle College Independent Champions
- "Paw" drumline street cadence inspired the composition of Cadence: Fantasy on Rhythms by Nick Angelis (2009) for concert band by B.J. Brooks, currently published by C. Alan Publications
- Mr. David Martin, Assistant Director from 1999-2010, is a published composer and arranger with many works currently in print particularly for beginning and young bands
TUCBIDG: The UC Band Is Damn Good
About the Bands
The University of Cincinnati Bearcat Spirit Bands, Marching and Basketball, are the largest and most visible organizations within the Bearcat Bands with a total 2019 membership of 270 students. The band is comprised of students from all over the UC Main campus, UC Blue Ash and UC Clermont, and Greater Cincinnati Collegiate Connection schools such as NKU and Cincinnati State. Although some of our members are music majors at the internationally-recognized College-Conservatory of Music, the majority major in just about every other program of study available at UC. All participate for the love of the activity and take considerable pride in representing the University of Cincinnati through music as well as providing entertainment, positive public relations, and enthusiastic support.
The membership commitment is performing in both the Marching Band and in one of the Basketball Bands. All musicians are expected to continue playing in the spring semester with participation in a concert or jazz band.
Marching Band is available for one or two credits and meets on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 6:00 to 8:30 PM and Wednesday evenings from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. Home games, usually Saturdays, require additional rehearsal time and attendance. All members also attend any full-band away games, including bowl trips. Occasional exhibition performances and parades are also scheduled. Despite this, participation in the Bearcat Marching Band involves less time than most typical high school marching bands!
Basketball Band (aka Pep Band) is really the entire Marching Band simply divided into smaller bands. Each band receives a list of game assignments in the fall and meets for rehearsal prior to each assigned game. Opportunities for post-season tournament travel are usually anticipated!
Band member costs are $100 student Band Council dues, black marching shoes, and black Docker-style pants. Some marching instruments are available to students of the Bearcat Bands at no cost (ex. sousaphone, mellophone, baritone).
The Fall Concert and Jazz Bands are half-semester ensembles beginning around mid-semester. Auditions are held during the first half of the semester. Rehearsals are once weekly.
- Fall Bearcat Concert Band: Mondays 5:00 to 7:00 PM
- Fall Bearcat Jazz Band: Mondays 7:30 to 9:00 PM
The Spring Concert and Jazz Bands are full-semester ensembles with auditions occuring during the previous fall semester. Advanced Bands are available. Rehearsals are twice weekly.
- Bearcat Concert Band: Tuesdays & Thursdays 5:00 to 7:00 PM
- Bearcat Advanced Concert Band: Tuesdays & Thursdays 7:15 to 9:15 PM
- Bearcat Jazz Band: Mondays 5 to 6:45 pm & Wednesdays 7:30 to 8:15 PM
- Bearcat Advanced Jazz Band: Mondays 7 to 8:45 pm and Wednesdays 8:30 to 9:15 PM
No experience? No problem! Each Spring semester, a Beginning Band is available for those with no instrumental experience or those with experience that would like to learn something new. One concert is performed near the end of the semester to show off the progress. This is available to all students, staff, and faculty and is a lot of fun. Contact the Band Office for more information.
Various small instrumental ensembles are occasionally created based on student interest. Some that have occurred in the past include Trombone Choir, Saxophone Choir, Clarinet Choir, Percussion Ensemble, and Brass Choir. If this interests you, contact the Band Office for more information.
How to Join Us: A Summary
- Be enrolled (or plan to be enrolled during the intended semester of membership) as a student at UC, one of the satellite campuses, or in one of the Greater Cincinnati Collegiate Connection schools.
- Read the audition information posted on the website.
- Contact the band office to receive placement audition music and to schedule your audition.
- Arrive early the day of. Complete paperwork. Perform your placement audition. There are musical requirements and may be movement requirements as well, depending on the ensemble.
- Sometime following your audition, receive information as to your status. You may or may not be placed in the ensemble(s) and/or in the role(s) for which you were hoping.
- Enroll in the corresponding CCM class.
- Pay your band dues. These help fund a variety of events throughout the year.
- Attend all required camps, rehearsals, performances, and other events as they are communicated to you.
- Have fun making great music, friendships, and memories for a lifetime!
Give to the Bearcat Bands
Gifts in any amount enable us to provide every student with the best possible experience. Most of our external support comes from monthly and annual givers in a variety of amounts. No gift is too small; all are significant.
Recent projects funded by donations include a Bearcat Marching Band performance at the 2018 BOA Super-Regional in Indianapolis, outfitting the Color Guard with new uniforms and pregame flags, and providing students with complimentary meals following brass ensemble and concert band performances.
Thank you for your support!
Rockwern Band Center
147 Corry Boulevard
Cincinnati, OH 45219
Directions to the Rockwern Band Center:
We are built into the Calhoun Garage. The office entrance is on the north side of the building on the corner of Corry Boulevard and Dennis Street directly across Corry from the Marge Schott Baseball Stadium third base. The band room entrance is further down Corry Boulevard through the double doors before the parking garage entrance. All entrances are wheelchair accessible. Give us a call at 513-556-2263 if we can help you find our space.
Telephone and Email