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photo collage featuring smiling members of the marching band

Marching Band and Pep Band

The marching band and pep band provide the soundtrack to the NC State game day experience for our student-athletes and fans.

Logo for the Power Sound of the South featuring uniform cap and color guard flag.

As a student-musician, or a member of the color guard, dance team and twirlers who make up the NC State marching band and pep band, you deliver school spirit and energy to athletic events and other campus festivities, and represent the university and the Wolfpack family both on and off campus. You also spend your days surrounded by your closest friends, making music together on the biggest stage the university has to offer. What’s better than that?

I love [the department] so much! I have been in marching band and pep band for many years. Every game day has special memories for me.

Christopher Roe

Marching Band (MUS 131)

The Power Sound of the South® represents NC State at Carter-Finley Stadium and beyond. Active in the fall semester during football season, the marching band performs at all home and select away games, as well as other campus events, parades and occasional tours. It includes brass and woodwinds, drumline, color guard, dance team and twirlers. With more than 300 members, “the world’s most dangerous marching band” is a favorite of Wolfpack fans and a beloved part of the NC State experience.

Directed by Dr. Paul Garcia

MUS 131 meets Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 3:35-5:25 p.m. in the fall semester only

Varsity Band (MUS 132)

Active during the late fall and spring semesters during basketball season, the Varsity Band, known as the pep band, performs at all home games for both the men’s and women’s basketball teams, and accompanies the teams to any post-season tournament games. They also perform occasionally for other athletic teams, as well as campus events. The pep band, like the marching band, is an essential part of the NC State experience.

Directed by Dr. Paul Garcia

MUS 132 meets Mondays, 5:20-6:30 p.m. in the spring semester only

Clarinet players in the Varsity Pep Band perform during a basketball game wearing the striped pep band shirts. One player wears a hat in the shape of a wolf head.

Faculty and Staff

Director of Bands

Paul Garcia

Teaching Professor | Director of Bands | Applied Instructor of Percussion | Conductor of Athletic Bands and Wind Ensemble

Assistant Marching Band Director

Mark Whitfield

Marching Band Staff, Assistant Marching Band Director

Athletic band faculty and staff

Forrest Budway

Marching Band Staff, Drum Line Instructor

Lindsay Laske

Marching Band Staff, Assistant Dance Team Instructor

Amanda Roediger

Marching Band Staff, Dance Team Instructor

Bethany Schreiner

Marching Band Staff, Featured Twirlers Instructor

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. Marching Band (MUS 131) and Varsity Band (MUS 132) are classes which earn one hour of course credit and may be taken as many times as you like. You have to be enrolled in the class in order to participate.

No, but the pep band has fewer spaces available and marching band students are given priority and perform for the basketball games that take place during the fall semester. You can audition to join the pep band in January, provided space is available, for the spring semester athletic events.

Travel opportunities vary year to year.

Typically, the full marching band only travels to one away game, and a smaller group travels to 1-2 additional away games. Depending on whether the football team makes it into a bowl game, and which one, there may be an additional opportunity for some portion of the band to travel for a bowl game. The marching band also occasionally travels overseas in the summer on tour.

A small group of pep band musicians travels to post-season tournaments, including ACC, NCAA and possibly NIT for both men’s and women’s basketball, as needed.

Typically Band Camp starts one full week before the first day of classes. This generally does require marching band students to move into their dorms early. Dr. Garcia will communicate information about Band Camp to all students accepted into the band by the end of July.

It costs roughly $100 per semester for uniform, equipment and (optional) instrument rentals, on top of your tuition for MUS 131. All costs associated with travel to football or basketball games are covered for students. Occasional international trips are optional and costs would be the responsibility of the student.

Questions about our athletic bands?

Contact Dr. Paul Garcia at pdgarcia@ncsu.edu or 919.513.4489.

Round logo for the Power Sound of the South