I’m worried that band will take up too much of my student’s time and how will they keep up with UVa’s academics if they’re spending all their time rehearsing?
Actually, the CMB rehearses less than most high school bands. We practice Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:00-8:20 pm, and add a Friday rehearsal on game weeks from 6:00-8:00 pm. Almost all of the band members find they have more than enough time to keep up with their academics and band, plus find time for other activities and a social life. In addition, the band is a great academic resource as well. With over 330 members, there’s almost always an upperclassmen with the same major that you can turn to if you’re struggling in a particular class.
Well that’s a relief. But what about costs? College isn’t cheap, and I don’t know how much I can spend on marching band.
The total cost of being a member of the CMB is…$40. That’s it. No joke! This buys shoes and gloves for each member. Outside of that, everything is provided! Food and housing during band camp, free clothes during the season, a uniform, and even a top-of-the-line instrument! When the band travels, all expenses are taken care of by the CMB. That means if you live in Ohio and the band is going to Jacksonville for the Gator Bowl, we will pay to have your student flown to Charlottesville or Jacksonville for the game and back, at no extra cost to you.
Wow, no more citrus and pie sales for me! So since there’s no need for fundraising, how do parents volunteer during the season?
Actually, they don’t. Seriously! One of the great things about the CMB is how much students take ownership of the band. Our student staff runs the band, from the section leaders and drill instructors who teach music and drill, to the support staff, who take care of the uniforms, equipment, attendance, banquet – you name it, they do it. We pride ourselves on our student leadership. So now you can sit back, relax, and watch your student perform without any of the extra work. You’ve earned it!
So when and where is band camp? How does that work with move-in day?
New members register at camp the Saturday before move-in day. This year, it’s August 15th. Parents drop their students off, and then leave for the week. Then, students are picked up by their parents on Friday, August 21st (move-in day part 1) when they go to grounds to move in to dorms. Camp is held at the Double Tree Hotel on 29, and all expenses – food, lodging, etc. are taken care of by the band.
But we’re from out-of-state. I don’t think we can drive down twice!
That’s ok. You can bring all of your student’s stuff to camp when you drop them off, and we’ve got storage facilities to keep it in during the week. Then, when move-in day rolls around, we will take care of moving them into the dorm with all of their belongings.
I’ve heard something about scholarships – how can my student be a part of that?
Scholarships currently aid all of the student leaders, in addition to percussion and low brass players. The band is currently offering between $300 and $3000 for scholarship money, based on seniority, instrumentation, talent, and support of the band.
Well thanks, that definitely helps! Is there an opportunity for me to see my student perform?
We love to have parents come to watch us at football games! We do a different show each game, so we’ll always have something new to show you. In addition, we like parents to come to watch our Saturday morning rehearsals before games. We usually have over 100 parents who come to watch, tail-gate, and enjoy the performance. The rehearsal culminates with a rendition of the Good Old Song, sung by the band and the parents together! This is a tradition we started in 2004, the first year of the band, and have continued ever since.
Great, I’ll definitely come to games! How do I get tickets? Is there a place I should sit?
To order tickets, call the UVA Athletics Ticket Office (800-542-8821 or 434-924-8821) and request tickets to sit in the Band Parent section when you order! Many of the parents sit together, and it’s a great opportunity for fellowship and support.
Who can I contact if I have any other questions?
Feel free to call us at the office at 434-982-5347, or stop by anytime! We have our own building, the Hunter Smith Band Building at 180 Culbreth Road. You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you!