The Brass Ensemble is a select group of undergraduate and graduate musicians on trumpet, horn, trombone, euphonium, tuba and percussion. The ensemble performs all types of music from Renaissance and Baroque, to contemporary brass originals and jazz.
The Concert Band is open to membership from the student body as a whole as well as to students whose major is in music. Rehearsals begin in November at the conclusion of marching band activities and continue through the spring semester. An audition is not required for membership in the band; prior experience playing a wind or percussion instrument, however, is a prerequisite.
Excellent university instruments are available for individuals who may need them. The Concert Band performs the best literature from the standard repertoire for the modern wind band as well as striking contemporary works. The band recently has featured professional soloists and has premiered several new and newly arranged or edited works. Concerts take place both on campus and at other locations, and the ensemble has toured, and performed at numerous high schools throughout the tri-state region.
Coyote Pep Band performs at all men's and women's home basketball games. The Pep Band performs a wide variety of musical styles and is open to all USD students. For more information, contact Peter.Lillpopp@usd.edu.
The Sound of USD is a visible and active part of the campus life. The band includes brass, woodwinds, percussion and color guard, and performs a wide variety of musical genres. The Sound is open to music and non-music majors and previous marching experience is not required. The band performs at all home football games, as the exhibition band at contests and festivals, and travels to at least one road football game annually. The Sound has traveled and performed internationally and continues to offer opportunities to perform abroad. The Sound also is the featured exhibition band at the annual Quad State Marching Competition hosted by the USD Department of Music.
University students have the opportunity to participate in several unique percussion experiences. Participation in the various ensembles is by audition during the first week of classes in the fall semester. Traditional percussion ensemble experience includes membership in the Percussion Ensemble/Marimba Ensemble. Participation in these two ensembles requires a strong background in performance of numerous traditional percussion instruments. The Steel Drum Band is available for students with an interest in music of the Caribbean.
The Steel Drum Band experience is offered at both the beginning and advanced performance levels. Students with a basic understanding of note reading and some keyboard experience will find the world of playing a steel pan a great experience.
The Symphonic Band is the flagship of the university band program. Under the direction of Professor Peter Lillpopp, its mission is “to promote the study and performance of symphonic wind band literature while preparing students for future opportunities as educators, performers, and consumers of high quality band music.” In addition to several concerts on campus each year, the Symphonic Band annually tours the region and performs every other year at the South Dakota Bandmasters Convention. National and/or international tours take place every three to four years. Auditions are open to all university students during the first week of the each semester. The band rehearses on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 4–5 p.m.
For more information please contact Professor Peter Lillpopp (Peter.Lillpopp@usd.edu), director of bands.