When and where does the concert band rehearse?

Day + Time

Tuesdays, 7:30 pm to 10:00 pm

Try to arrive by 7:10 so you have time to set up and warm up. If you’re late (we know it happens), please assemble your instrument and enter quietly.

Where

The concert band rehearses in Twin Peaks. To confirm our rehearsal location and let us know you’re coming, contact us

What to Bring

  • Instrument
  • Pencil with eraser
  • Music folder

Each weekly rehearsal is for the concert band unless otherwise announced. Concert music is provided at rehearsals via copies available from section folders. Please do not take music home until you have committed to the concert or performance we are currently rehearsing.

What is the concert band’s annual schedule like?

We have five concerts a year, roughly scheduled in:

  • March
  • May
  • July
  • September
  • December

New members are encouraged to come to one of the first four rehearsal weeks before one of these concerts (starting in January, late March, July, and late September, respectively). Again, please contact us for exact dates.

Performances

If you like to perform, you’ve picked the best community band in America! The Band gets invited to more events than it can possibly accept. Details like attire, call times, and schedules are released on a per-performance basis for the concert band via the email listserv.

When and where do the Marching and Pep Bands rehearse?

Members of the Marching & Pep Bands perform two types of gigs: (1) marching in parades and (2) standing (non-moving) indoor or outdoor events. Music is usually interchangeable between the groups. There are two types of rehearsals: (1) outdoor Marching Rehearsals where the focus is on parade simulation and (2) indoor combined Pep/Marching Rehearsals where we practice performance music. 

In order to participate in the Marching and Pep Bands, you must attend at least two marching rehearsals and pep/marching music rehearsals. We also have occasional “marching fundamentals” rehearsals, so if you’ve never marched or feel rusty, attending one of those will (re)introduce you to basic marching techniques like playing while moving, turning, and responding to whistle commands.

Marching Rehearsals

Day + Time

Held several times per year, typically at 10am-12pm or 12pm-2pm on a Sunday 2-3 weeks before a parade. Rehearsals are weather-dependent.

Where

Outdoor marching rehearsals are typically held on the City College of San Francisco campus up the hill from Balboa Park Station. To confirm our rehearsal location and let us know you’re coming, contact us.

What to Bring

  • Instrument
  • Pencil with eraser
  • Flip folder for marching music
  • Lyre
  • Rubber bands/clothespins to keep music from flying away
  • Water

Pep/Marching Rehearsals

Day + Time

Sit-down Marching/Pep Band rehearsals occur in the evening on the third Thursday from February through October, with some additional occasional Tuesdays (once per quarter).

Where

Combined marching/pep rehearsals are typically held in the Castro. To confirm our rehearsal location and let us know you’re coming, contact us.

What to Bring

  • Instrument
  • Pencil with eraser
  • Folding music stand

New marching and pep band music is typically provided at rehearsals. You may occasionally need to trim down a part to fit in your flip folder. It is your responsibility to make sure you have copies of all the applicable music before a gig, but one of the Band Librarians can assist you if you’re missing a copy of an older piece.

If you would like to march with the Band, a good time to join is late winter in order to be at marching rehearsals scheduled in the early spring, but we welcome members all throughout the year!

How do I participate in the Marching Band?

The Marching Band is great fun, and the most visible aspect of the Band. We perform in front of television cameras and millions of people each year in such high-profile parades as Chinese New Year and San Francisco LGBTQ Pride. We have also made out-of-town trips to cities such Reno, Santa Cruz, Los Angeles, San Diego, Guernville, and Fresno for their celebrations. Marching is a great way to show your Pride.

Details like attire, call times, and schedules are released on a per-performance basis for the marching and pep bands via the email listserv. 

Marching Music

Marching music includes three pieces we are known for — “California”,”If My Friends Could See Me Now” and “San Francisco.” These are collectively known as “The Big 3.” We also usually include a traditional march and one or two extra “pop” tunes for the marching season. There is no need to memorize these, but we will rehearse them during both a “sit-down” music rehearsal and while marching.

Marching Uniforms

Our uniforms consist of black tuxedos, a hat and rainbow plume, a red citation braid, and an overlay. Overlays are handed out the day of the event, and are collected immediately after the event. You need to provide black shoes comfortable for marching, black socks, and a black T-shirt or undershirt for underneath the tuxedo. More uniform information can be found on the Uniform Page of the Band Handbook, or contact the Uniform Coordinator at a rehearsal.

What about band dues?

Dues are $50 per calendar quarter; members who only participate in marching events pay $50 for one year. Your first quarter is complimentary — no fee. Membership dues help the band pay for uniforms, rehearsal and storage space, instruments, music, publicity for events, and various other costs involved with running a non-profit musical organization. If finances are a barrier, please share that information with the Band Bursar: waivers, discounts, and scholarships are always available.

How will the band communicate with me?

The SFLGFB’s key communication channels include:

Announcements

Each rehearsal, our main announcement time is just before break. Please hold down any talking while this takes place. If you wish to make an announcement, walk to the front of the room and wait in line. Announcements should be items relevant to the Band (we do take a pretty broad view of what that means) and kept fairly short (under one minute).

Band Notes

You’ll see our newsletter, Band Notes, for handout near the door each rehearsal. It’s a great source of information about the Band and what’s happening now; plus it will give you a near-term schedule of events and names and numbers for key people.

Band Listserv

At the first rehearsal, the Band Secretary will collect your email information and invite you to join the Band Member Google Group. While general announcements are made on this listserv, critical day-of announcements are also made on it, so it is recommended that you do NOT set the group to be a daily digest.