Band‎ > ‎

Marching Band

Dear Students and Parents,

We would like to welcome you to another great year of music making with the Hinsdale Central Red Devil Marching Band. We are confident that your participation will be an enriching one in many ways! Below you will find a comprehensive guide to the expectations set forth by the Hinsdale Central Marching Band Staff. This page includes policies and procedures for important dates and attendance, grading, and a style guide which outlines and describes the basic marching commands and vocabulary used on the marching field. You should have received our welcome letter in the mail and via email outlining policy, procedures, and required equipment for the fall. It is the hope of the band department that the following information will answer many questions that parents and students have about our marching season. 

Music Staff
Mr. Matt Kurinsky
Mr. Matt Goeke


Congratulations to our 2019-2020 Marching Band Staff!

Drum Majors

 Mia Gaddis, Amer Goel, Lorenzo Jennings, Sydney Wojczynski

Colorguard Captains

Lillian Niemeyer, Sarah Lian

Head Quartermaster - Ayesha Abbasi
Percussion Section Leader - Bilal Khan

Section Leaders

 Flute  Manvit Adusumilli
Emily Gottschalk
Sarah Lotsoff
Amelia Mo
Esha Modi
Karen Tan
 ClarinetRei Hemmer
Ani Raghuvir
Shivani Rao
Jackie Roberts
Demetra Theotikos
 Alto Saxophone    Jackson Hughes
Linda Li
Nithin Reddy
Akshay Undevia
Scott Xu
 Tenor SaxophoneLuke Moran & John Olsen
 Baritone SaxophoneJames Gaddis
 TrumpetEvan Eldridge
Max Lai
Nick Lynch
Esha Patil
Kritin Shanmugam
Moses Yawe
Luke Zeman
 MellophoneLucy Fischer & Jack Kapcar
 TromboneDan Bieber
Eric Brugge
Henry Jonas
Hari Rao
 BaritoneCourtney Brown
Marcos Lopez
Adam Nunez
 TubaJosh Budziak & Noah Islam
 SnareMatthew Notaro
 QuadsLogan Brenneman
 Bass DrumMitchell Lee
 CymbalsBryan Shepardson
 Bells        Tasia Chibucos
 QuartermastersMichelle Brown, Caroline Cubbin, Sam Daw, Angelina Duan, Anna Gruchala, Colin Kurimay, Maddie Maduzia, Kiana Ravanasa, Sarah Running, Shiven Shah, Raghav Sharma, Savita Sundar, Isabel Sunderland, Dylan Tang, Marla Winters, Emily Zhang, Grant Zhang

 Spirit Leaders
Anu Madasi
Kai McManus
Max Schwalb


You will also be able to sync our music calendar to your smart device at our calendar link.

Summer Marching Camp starts on Monday, August 5. Band Staff are expected to attend from 12-5:30 to prepare music, organize the rehearsal space, and attend leadership drills. The Monday and Tuesday evening rehearsal is for Student leaders and Freshmen ONLY. Students 9-12 are expected to attend the remaining summer marching rehearsals.


Students will be given the opportunity to practice field marching and music rehearsal during their scheduled band period. Daily grades for marching season will be reflected in the students' participation grade and will include, but not limited to: material checks, reflections of skill development, music performance reviews and overall pro-active attitudes.


40 Points

Appropriate Uniform

10 Points


50 Points



15 Points

Materials (All needed for full credit)

  • Music
  • Drill
  • Pencil

5 Points

Appropriate Footwear

5 Points


25 Points


Attendance at scheduled concerts and performances is mandatory. Unexcused absences will result in 59% of the grade. Excused absences will result in 85% of the grade. Both absences are able to be made up. Conflicts need to be addressed early by coaches, parents, directors and all involved in the absence. In addition, points may be deducted for any of the following reasons: incomplete or incorrect uniform, tardiness, missing music or equipment, disruptive or inappropriate behavior. The director reserves the right to judge the infraction and the grade reduction.

Performances are equivalent to chapter-end tests in math class. They are the culmination of weeks of collective work and require every member of the ensemble. Just like in math class, if you miss the test you need to make it up. Therefore, there are many extra credit or performance opportunities available for students to make up missed points. It is imperative you check personal calendars against the band calendar at the beginning of the school year.

A large portion of our marching season is covered in the summer marching camp. Students are required to attend the scheduled rehearsals on the band calendar. These rehearsals will always be on the calendar a year in advance and we encourage families to observe those dates when scheduling vacations.

Tuesday rehearsals occur only on the weeks that we have performances. This is our ONLY chance to rehearse with all band students and the expectation is that the student is present. Tuesday evening marching band rehearses after school from 5:30-8:30. It is a credited course and will therefore follow the high school attendance and gym exemption policies.


Fall Athletes involved in after school practice are encouraged to speak to the coaches early in the year and let them know the dates of marching rehearsals. Our expectations are that the athlete leave practice a little early and are allowed to arrive a little late to marching practice. 

  • The district Code of Conduct will be in effect at all scheduled band activities including on and off campus.
  • Examples of disciplinary options contained under each level of misbehavior will be interpreted by the directors, staff and building level administrators whenever necessary.
  • Disrespect of any staff member, parent volunteer or fellow student will not be tolerated and will result in disciplinary action.
  • Students are to remain in designated areas during ALL scheduled band activities. Any departures or absences, without prior permission from the director(s), are grounds for disciplinary action and/or loss of participation points from the band grade.

  • Always conduct yourself in a manner that brings credit to you, your family, your community, and your school, and such that you are a positive reflection of the proud traditions of Hinsdale Central High School. 
  • Refrain from the use of tobacco, drinking of alcoholic beverages, or the use of drugs. 
  • Be loyal, honest, courteous and sportsmanlike in all dealings with your band director, band staff, fellow band members and chaperones. 
  • Refrain from the use of foul language and negative comments. This reflects you, your family and your work ethic.
  • Adult chaperones are available to assist you. They must receive your complete cooperation and respect.
  • Watch, listen, and cooperate with adult and student leaders during band functions.
  • Special care should be taken of personal equipment. The quality of music and overall performance of the band relies on the condition of your equipment/instrument.
  • Be at the right place, at the right time for all band activities with the proper equipment, attire, and attitude.

All rules remain consistent with District Policy. A well-defined and executed rehearsal technique has a direct impact on the success of the group. It is expected that all band members adhere to the following rehearsal etiquette:
  • Be in the right place at the right time with the right equipment. You should have the following items with you at all rehearsals: 
    • Pencil; you will need to write several things down on your music and drill at rehearsal. It is very difficult to remember everything from rehearsal to rehearsal.
    • Drill chart for the current show and attendance block. These items are PDF’s online and can be printed in case of misplacement.
    • Appropriate footwear. Wearing anything other than gym shoes makes performing the glide step correctly difficult. 
  • Talking during rehearsal must be kept to a minimum. There are many band members and limited staff and they should not be expected to speak over you. Questions or comments are encouraged but should be conducted at the appropriate time. You will be given breaks for water and rest. 
  • Always rehearse in the same manner you perform. Never expect a quality performance to come together only on the day of a show. Always look to your student leaders for horn angle, body posture etc.
  • Rehearsal etiquette/respect is the same regardless of the conductor.
  • How the band sounds is just as important as how we look. We expect students to practice their individual part.
  • Positive and negative attitudes are contagious. You are expected to exhibit a positive and cooperative attitude at all times.
  • Cell phones are unnecessary during a marching rehearsal. Carrying it in a pocket may inhibit the execution of proper marching technique. Leave it in a locked band locker.


Football Games, Parades, Grand Openings
  • Do not be late. Report time for most home games is 5:30 and are clearly marked on the calendar online. Read the board/screen and follow directions. 
  • March to and from the stadium with pride! The uniform is to be worn PROPERLY at all times. Your performance begins with the parade block anywhere outside the band room and does not end until instructed to do so by a Director or Drum Major. There should be limited talking while marching to and from events and heads should be facing forward.
  • You may not eat or drink in your uniform except for water. Accidents will occur unexpectedly that may soil, stain, or permanently damage your uniform. You will be instructed at performance as to when it is appropriate to remove your band jacket and get something to eat.
  • Running in uniform is prohibited; it is out of character, and shows a lack of respect for the uniform and the organization.
  • Do not lean or sit on anything that will soil, tear or snag your uniform.
  • While at a performance, it is imperative that you sit with your designated section. This not only gives the band a uniform look, but it is crucial in maintaining a well-balanced and consistent sound.
  • There are to be no visitors in the stands during a football game. Only Red Devil Marching Band members, chaperones, band managers, and District Staff are allowed in the band’s stands. This is important from the standpoint of your safety. There are no exceptions.
  • Never polish your instrument or shoes while in uniform.
  • The general rule of thumb is that if you have any questions as to if you should or should not be doing something in uniform, DON’T DO IT! When you are wearing the uniform, you are not looked upon by others as an individual, but rather as a member of the Red Devil marching band. Most of the spectators and band members from other districts who see you behind the scenes will form their opinion of the ENTIRE BAND from their opinion of how you behave in uniform. This also carries over when you are wearing any Red Devil Band attire, or anytime that you are outwardly representing the Red Devil Marching Band. 

The Hinsdale Central Red Devil Marching Band, through the generosity of the D86 administration, purchased DeMoulin Collection uniforms in 2009 and has been gracious enough to continue to supply the band with additional uniforms as the band has grown. We are very LUCKY to have such high quality uniforms and it is the obligation of every single student, parent and staff member to assist in the maintenance and care of this costly investment. Any deliberate abuse of this privilege will result in consequences that may include financial penalties and/or grade reductions. The directors reserve the right to judge what behavior in uniform is unacceptable.
  • The consumption of food or beverages, excluding water, not handed out by band staff or parents while in uniform is STRICTLY forbidden, unless distributed by band parents, student leaders, or directors.
  • When not being worn, the uniform is to be hung correctly and stored in the closets below the school auditorium.
  • When accessories are not being worn (gloves, shoes, plumes etc.), they should be placed in appropriate storage containers to avoid damage or misplacement.
  • If a marching band member is in uniform, then they are to be IN uniform. In other words, unzipped coats, shakos on backwards or at a tilt, and non-DrillMaster shoes are not acceptable.
  • While it may be necessary to wear two pairs of socks depending on the weather, the outer pair should be black dress socks that extend past the calf. Socks of any other color or size are not permitted.
  • Sweatshirts or jackets are not to be worn outside of the marching uniform unless the directors or drum majors give you permission.
  • Personal Appearance:
    • Long hair (males or females) should be bundled securely and “up” within the confines of the shako, with no loose strands in the face.
    • Visible jewelry is not permitted. Earrings and all necklaces should be removed prior to public performances.


Instrument and Flags
  • The Hinsdale Central Red Devils band program will provide the following instruments, free of charge, to its members: mellophones, baritones, horns, euphoniums, sousaphones, tenor saxophones, marching percussion and any accessories that are used for color guard. Drummers will be asked to purchase sticks and wind players will be asked to purchase mouthpieces, reeds and ligatures. The band may also have a limited supply of other band instruments for its member to use. Check with the Directors about the availability of an instrument. These instruments must be checked out to you prior to band camp and you will be held responsible for their playing condition during the season. 
  • Please notify the director immediately if there is any damage to a school owned instrument. IF the damage has happened through no fault of the student, a charge will not be applied. If damage occurs to a school-owned instrument due to negligence or mistreatment, the student will be assessed damage fees.
  • Under no circumstances are any students that are not assigned a school instrument to pick up, carry, or play a school-owned instrument. This is for your protection and the student’s protection that the instrument is assigned. If you see someone that is not assigned an instrument playing or carrying an instrument, please notify a director immediately.
  • Proper care of all instruments (personal and school-owned) during the marching season is essential. It is impossible to present a musical performance on an instrument with sticky slides, bad pads, split reeds, or chipped mouthpieces. Also, be aware that many students bring their own instruments to play in the band. When in the stands, treat all instruments with the same respect as if the instrument belonged to you. We highly recommend that brass instruments and mouthpieces be flushed periodically to remove accumulated dirt and grime. There is no excuse for not keeping your instrument in good playing condition.

  • Every Red Devil marching member will be given a copy of the drill chart. It is your responsibility to find your drill number on the chart and familiarize yourself with not only your coordinate on the field, but to understand the overall structure of the drill and how you fit in. Extra copies of the drill will be available at if you happen to misplace your copy. You are expected to have the current drill with you during marching rehearsal. In the event that edits need to be made, you are required to have access to these materials at every rehearsal, even after the music and drill are memorized.
  • When new drill is issued, you will be given time in class to appropriately mark your music indicating when, where and how you are supposed to move. Section leaders will be periodically asked to check this for a grade.
  • Each student is expected to own their instruments version of a flip book and lyre. Each Spring, an electronic order form is available through the website for ordering flipbooks and lyres. If you misplace or damage your flip book, you will be asked to go to the music store and replace unusable equipment.
  • Music is issued at the beginning of the marching season and students are expected to put music in their flip books immediately. If music is misplaced, it is the responsibility of the student to make copies of missing music from a section member or to email a director to receive a new packet and print what they need.


How to read a drill chart
  • Reading a drill chart is like playing the game of “Battleship,” where each position on the field has a left/right position, and an up/down position. 
  • Your left and right position is related to the “Yard Lines,” which are permanently marked on the football field. Yard lines are placed five yards apart, which is also considered to be a distance of eight (8) “marching steps.” The yard lines are defined on the drill chart as thick vertical lines.
  • The thin lines on the drill chart further sub-divide the yard lines into four (4) “marching step” segments a piece.
  • Your position is related by the number of steps you are either “inside” or “outside” these yard lines. Inside is considered to be towards the 50 yard line, outside is considered to be away from the 50 yard line. 
    • Your left/right position will then be:
      • Side of Field
      • Yard Line closest to
      • Inside or outside closest yard line
      • “Marching Steps” from that line 
  • Your up/down position is related to one of four places: Front sideline, front hash mark, back hash mark or back sideline.
  • Again, thick lines are at eight step (8) increments and the thin lines are subdivided into four (4) step increments.
  • If your coordinate is on a hash mark, the arch of your foot should be on the edge closest to the center of the field.



  • The Directors are in charge of administering the total musical and visual marching band program at Hinsdale Central.
  • The drum majors and captains are directly responsible to the Directors and have specific responsibilities assisting in the drilling of the band and in rehearsal and performances. Auditions for Drum Major will be held in May for the following marching season. All Drum Majors must attend an educational camp during the summer which will be paid for by the Music Parents Association.
  • The student leaders and drill captains will be appointed through the recommendation of the directors and an online application. Sections leaders are responsible for their specific units or sections of the band. Section Leaders will be outstanding marchers, peer teachers and leaders. They are to help maintain order during all events, submit requests for necessary equipment and props to staff members, and to act as peer leaders; both on and off the rehearsal field.
  • Red Devil Marching Band members—You! The individual band member is the backbone of the organization — the one who sees that tasks get accomplished. You are the future leaders of this organization.

 Always seek to solve your own issue first. If you still need help, see the following leaders for help.

Band Problems

Student Leader


Student Leader

Percussion Equipment Issues

Student Leader

Flag Issues

Guard Captains

Sheet Music/Drill

Google Classroom, then Student Leader

Uniform Repair or Number

Quartermaster then Band Parent

Medical Problems


Financial Challenges


Instrument Checkout/Repair




The following positions are chosen by the Directors and require an online application. Below are the listed responsibilities:

Drum Major (Audition Required)

  • Attend a summer leadership camp paid by the Music Parents 
  • Conduct at performances and rehearsal as directed by the Directors
  • Act as a liaison to Directors and students 
  • Role Model and enforcer
  • Student Motivator through honest criticism delivered in an encouraging manner. 
Student Leaders and Captains (Application Required)
  • Preparation and organization of section 
  • Run sectionals  
  • Report disciplinary problems
  • Uniform inspection before every band performance 
  • Create positive sectional morale
  • Take attendance and turn in attendance sheet when requested



The two most important attributes of a successful marching band are SPIRIT and SYSTEM. SUCCESS is the by-product of spirit and system. A system represents everything provided to the band by the administration, including philosophy, methods, marching and playing style, policies, activities, etc… Spirit represents how the band members react to the system with practice, attitude, commitment, responsibility, dependability, and hard work.. When both of these virtues are outstanding, success will surely follow. Success, then, has its own by products including pride, good discipline, enthusiasm, and dedication.

A student leader should never become someone who “bosses” their peers. Student leaders must work hard to earn the trust and respect of their peers; it cannot be demanded. Student leaders must support the philosophies and goals of their band director. They must prove by their actions that they deserve a leadership role. Becoming an effective leader demands hard work and an ongoing commitment to acquiring a command of basic fundamentals and knowledge related to the marching band medium. The greatest challenge is to develop the ability to share their expertise with others in such a manner that the entire band benefits. It is important to remember that EVERYONE in the band is equal and makes a significant contribution to the total success of the bands achievements. –Gary Smith

Treat a person as they are and they will remain as they are. Treat a person as they can and should be and they will become as they can and should be. -Stephan Covey

People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision.

The Red Devil band may have the opportunity to travel within and outside of Illinois as part of a performance/educational tour. These tours will often involve large public performances for top notch adjudicators or audiences. The benefits of a tour are many and result from rigorous preparation. The following tours have been taken in the last several years: 

2019-2020 -- Rome New Year's Day parade and Frascati Buskers Performance

2017 -- New York, NY -- Veteran's Day Parade


2013 New York, NY —Veteran’s Day Parade, Times Square Performance 

2012 Los Angeles/San Francisco — Disney Land parade, Hollywood Blvd. Performance 

2010 New York, NY — Air Craft Carrier Performance 

2009 Orlando, FL —Disney Tour 

Parents can get involved too!! We hope that all of the parents will participate and find ways to be involved in activities which reflect your special skills, talents, and interests. Please strongly consider getting involved in our wonderful band parent’s association that provides support to the marching band throughout the year. For more information, please select the MPA tab on the website home page. 

The Red Devil Marching Band parent volunteers provide such support for the HCHS marching band program. Parent volunteers help with the following activities: 
  • Marching Band Supplies 
  • Color Guard and Band Uniforms
  • Dispensing food and drink at home games



The Basic Block (Attendance or Parade Block) 
  • The block consists of ranks and files. Ranks run from right to left, while files are those lines running from front to rear. 
  • "TO THE READY" — This is a non-rhythmic call. Section leaders are asked to repeat the call to their section. Once in your position, your right foot should be on your mark and you should be listening for announcements or a call to attention. When called to attention, your left foot snaps to your right foot.
  • In the stationary block, there are two positions: 
    1. ATTENTION — Heels together, toes together, body erect; raise chin slightly. When standing at attention, the arch of the foot is on the yard line. There is NO movement and absolutely NO TALKING in this position. Your concept of professionalism is directly reflected on how you execute this command.  
    2. PARADE REST — Feet spread apart shoulder width, instrument held by right hand and the left hand will make a fist and fit in the small of your back. Your head will remain facing front and point at a 45 degree angle to the ground. Actual instrument position will be held to each section leader’s specifications.
                    Attention                                 Parade Rest

  • READY POSITION — Hold instrument with two hands at all times; in an upright position; in the center of your body. (Check with your section leader for exact instrument positions; remember all of the instruments within a section must look identical.) 
  • PLAYING POSITION — As dictated by section with director approval. Brass players must direct their bells approximately 10 degrees above parallel to prevent the sound from being trapped by the wall of the stadium or band member.


      Ready Position                                        Playing Position                           Playing Position (10 degree angle)



  • DRESS CENTER, LEFT OR RIGHT — Turn head in the appropriate direction, adjust alignment of the company front. Command READY, FRONT brings head and eyes back to the front. 
  • RIGHT/LEFT FACE - Executed by pivoting on the heel of the right/left foot and the toes of the left/right. Posture must remain in attention position.
  • COVER DOWN – This phrase is used when the band is in a parade block and the members are expected to straighten their file by looking forward.


            Dress Right or Left


  • MARK TIME (MT) — The toes do not leave the ground. The heel rolls off the ground up to the ball of the foot. Knees bend directly forward. Picture a tennis ball under your heels.
  • FORWARD MARCH (FM) This command is given only from the position of ATTENTION or MARK TIME. The style of marching that is utilized at HCHS is called the “glide/roll” step. This step is characterized by a smooth and flowing manner of marching. This style is particularly effective when using a 22.5” step, marching “8 to 5.” However, it may also be used with various lengths of strides ranging from less than 22.5” to slightly more than 30”. The glide step does not use a knee lift. 
  • BACKWARD MARCH (BM) — Body is erect as with attention and forward march, but by lifting up on the toes and taking a step backward does the left leg step off. The legs do not roll as in forward march. The knees should not bend too much, but never lock. Heels are up and the band is only on toes.

                Forward March                     Heel Lifting for Backward March

  • Body posture is erect.
  • Chin parallel to the ground.
  • Instrument in proper position either ready or playing position (assigned by section leader).
  • The leg will lift slightly so that the left foot crosses the anklebone of the right in the middle of the beat.
  • At the same time the toe of the left foot should point toward the sky, thus creating a roll step.
  • Repeat for the right foot step.

The normal marching step is a 22.5” inch step, resulting in 8 steps for every 5 yards. The normal block band marching interval is four 22.5” steps, or 2.5 yards between each person. This spacing is for both ranks and files. Adjusted step sizes that you may also encounter are:

16 steps to 5 yards = 11.25” Step
12 steps to 5 yards = 16.67” Step
6 steps to 5 yards = 33.33” Step
4 steps to 5 yards = 45” step

  • 180 and 90 DEGREE SLOW TURN — This maneuver is used to change direction of marching 90 and 180 degrees. The student, using low mark time, turns for a designated number of counts away from the 50-yard line or away from the home sideline.
  • FOLLOW THE LEADER (FTL) — This particular move is rather self-explanatory. The leader or the first person is shown the exact path he/she is to follow on the field, and the other members of the line/group follow the leader’s exact path. The two main problems in execution are cover and interval. The group must cover down (follow exact path of the leader) and MAINTAIN A CONSISTENT INTERVAL between members.
  • ADJUSTED STEP— The adjusted step is utilized when moving an individual or group of individuals from one position to another using a specific number of steps of unspecified length and uniform in style. The length of each step is therefore “adjusted” to provide the specified number of uniform steps. When used, the adjusted step will be accompanied by the number of steps desired to move from one position to another. It is then up to each member to adjust steps appropriately. The important thing to remember about adjusting your step size is to maintain a consistent flow from one form to the next, always guiding the dress and covering down.
  • MESH — When two ranks combine. Typically one rank fills in the spaces between marchers in the rank ahead.
  • FLOAT—Float is designation for moving a form as a group using adjusted steps.
  • ARC—Arcs appear in drills with various radii. When forming and arch, the form is achieved by floating into position. Everyone used the se number of steps to reach their positions, regardless of the distance to be traveled.
  • STRAIGHT LINE ADJUST (SLA) or SLIDE—This play position is an invaluable fundamental that enables the band to project their sound the stands while executing lateral movements. The fundamental is executed by having the individual turn from the waist up and point their instrument at the predetermined point (usually towards the intersection of the fifty yard line and th front sideline or perpendicular to the front sideline). Be sure to turn from the waist only; do not turn the horn, shoulders, or neck. Your upper body should automatically be facing front if you turn sufficiently at the waist. This technique is used only when the players are marching laterally or on an angle to the front sideline and volume and projection are desired.
  • FLANK – This move is similar to the slide, but when the body executes the turn, the horn DOES NOT face the stands. Instead, the horn turns with the body and faces the direction of the move.
  • HORNS TO THE BOX — This playing position simply involves raising the instrument higher than normal playing position. The brass players raiser their horns above 10 degrees to a height specified by the director. It is used to direct sound to the press box and the higher sections of the stadium.
  • MOVING BLOCK DRILL —When the moving fundamentals have been taught sufficiently, we will incorporate, among other drill, the following fundamental block drill: 
  • BOX DRILL – MT 8, FM 8, SL 8, BM 8, SR 8: REPEAT


  • ALIGNMENT— the straightness of a line or the roundness of a curve
    • DRESS — Alignment to your side
    • COVER — Alignment to your front 
  • SPACING — The space between centers of individuals 
    • INTERVAL — Spacing to your side
    • DISTANCE — Spacing to your front 
  • GUIDING —This concept refers to the ability of each player to adjust the alignment based on the placement of band members to the front of their position and to each side. 
  • HASH MARKS —Markings on the football field which divide the width of the football field. Use the innermost side of the hash marks on the practice field.