Give to Music

Department of Music
Phone: (509) 963-1216
Fax: (509) 963-1239

CWU Bands logo.About CWU Bands

The Central Washington University Bands have a long and distinguished history of excellence, appearing frequently at state, regional, national, and international conferences. The majority of students in the bands are undergraduate music majors pursuing degrees in music education or performance.

Basketball Band Auditions

Basketball band will be beginning the audition process very soon! For more information, and to submit your audition, visit the Basketball Band page.


  • All bands are usually auditioned quarterly. Materials and information may be found on our Ensemble Auditions page.
  • Audition music may be found on our Audition Excerpts page
  • All CWU students are welcome to audition and participate.
  • Rehearsals and concerts are required

CWU Band Schedule

Due to the pandemic, the normal band rehearsal schedule is currently not active. It's posted here for reference and planning purposes only as this are quite volatile right now.

  • Symphonic Band: M, W, F from 2:00-3:15 PM
  • Symphonic Winds: M & Th 3:30-5:00 PM and T 3-5 PM
  • Wind Ensemble: M & Th 3:30-5:00 PM and T 3-5 PM
  • Marching Band: M-F 3:00-5:00 PM (Fall Only) Complete Schedule
  • Basketball Band: Rehearsals TBA

Rehearsals will be held either in the Band Room, Choir Room, or on stage in the Concert Hall.

Wind Ensemble

Maggie playing flute in Wind EnsembleThe CWU Wind Ensemble has gained the reputation as being one of the nation’s outstanding undergraduate wind ensembles performing at state, regional, and national conferences. An auditioned group, under the direction of our bands director, this ensemble is the top wind band at CWU!

The Wind Ensemble has performed at the National CBDNA in Boulder, the National MENC in Minneapolis, the CBDNA Division Conferences in Reno, the Western International Band Clinics in Seattle, the NAfME Northwest Division Conference, and several State WMEA conferences. The group also has received invitations to perform at the prestigious American Bandmasters Association conferences.

The CWU Wind Ensemble performs contemporary and traditional literature, seeking a balance between transcriptions, marches and original wind ensemble compositions. The ensemble is frequently involved in new composition consortiums for wind band, including composers David Maslanka, Roger Cichy, Gregory Youtz, Thomas Sleeper, Shelley Hanson, David Gillingham, and Mark Camphouse.The Wind Ensemble has also featured many guest solo artists including outstanding CWU faculty and most recently Chris Martin, the principal trumpet of the New York Philharmonic.

Former members of the CWU Symphonic Wind Ensemble currently perform in orchestras, service bands, jazz bands, community bands, and various chamber ensembles throughout the country. Many graduates have continued their education as teaching assistants at outstanding graduate schools, and many have become exemplary music teachers in the public schools, in private study, and in higher education.

CWU Symphonic Winds

Symphonic Winds is the second premier wind ensemble at CWU. This group seeks to broaden performance and teaching skills through the programming of exemplary literature. The highest quality traditional, mixed with contemporary literature make up the foundation of musical repertoire performed by the group. They feature works by Maslanka, Mackey, Grainger, Persichetti to name a few. 
This ensemble has performed at the NAfME Northwest Division Conference and annually at the CWU WindFest. Along with other performance opportunities, students in Symphonic Winds are constantly improve themselves as both educators and performers and to pursue excellence at the highest level each day!

Membership in the Symphonic Winds is by audition only and is open to any university student, although the majority of the players in the 55-member ensemble are selected from the most talented musicians in the department of music.

This ensemble is under the direction of Paul Bain.

CWU Symphonic Band

Best playing the euphonium in Wind Ensemble.The Central Washington University Symphonic Band has gained the reputation as being one of Washington’s outstanding undergraduate wind bands. Symphonic Band is comprised of select undergraduate and graduate music majors in the department. Whereas most of the members are music majors and minors, qualified musicians from across the campus participate.

Membership is by audition only, held at the beginning of each quarter. Symphonic Band enrollment averages 55-65 musicians each year. The Symphonic Band studies and performs a musically diverse repertoire, ranging from traditional band literature to contemporary music for wind band. Graduates from the Symphonic Band, Symphonic Winds, as well as our Wind Ensemble, make up some of the most outstanding music educators in the Pacific Northwest.

The ensemble is Co-Directed by our Director of Band & Professor Paul Bain

CWU Marching Band

Saxophone section for marching band.The CWU Wildcat Marching Band performs at all home football games. The ensemble is made up of over 200 musicians from many different departments across campus. The CWUMB remains an integral and exciting part of the CWU Football game day atmosphere!

Marching Band at CWU is an academic, credited course, but does not require an audition for enrollment. Many members of the marching band also participate in CWU’s three concert bands, however, it is not necessary to do so. CWUMB rehearses from 3:00-5:00 Monday through Friday for about 4 weeks beginning in the first week of fall quarter classes. After the first four weeks rehearsals are split between marching band and concert band!

CWU Basketball Band

Brass section at a basketball game.The CWU Basketball Band brings energy and excitement to the men's and women's basketball games. The basketball band is comprised of 50 members. Members are selected through an audition process. Each member of the ensemble is paid for their participation. There are substitute positions available as well. If you have any questions, please feel free to email the basketball band director!