Vacancies & Careers
NAVAL ACADEMY BAND CAREERS: GENERAL INFORMATION
The United States Naval Academy Band, “The Navy’s Oldest and Finest,” has been providing music for the Brigade of Midshipmen and surrounding community since 1852. Located at the U.S. Naval Academy in beautiful Annapolis, Maryland, the band is comprised of professional musicians who have studied at some of the best music schools and conservatories in the world.
The United States Naval Academy Band is one of the Navy’s two premiere bands and is a preferentially staffed ensemble. Selection for assignment to the USNA Band is determined by competitive, live audition for announced vacancies. In order to audition, applicants must be a U.S. citizen aged 18 to 34, pass the Armed Forces Entrance Physical, and be otherwise qualified for service in the U.S. Navy. Current military members and some veterans may be exempt from the age requirement. To learn more about the band, current members, and ensembles, please visit the band’s website at www.usna.edu/USNAband
After completion of recruit training and upon arrival at the United States Naval Academy Band, members are advanced to the rank of Musician First Class (E-6 pay grade). Basic military pay can be found at https://www.dfas.mil/militarymembers/payentitlements/Pay-Tables/military-pay-charts.html. Pay may increase with subsequent advancements and annual pay raises to reflect the increase in cost-of-living. In addition to basic pay, the Navy offers non-taxable housing and food allowances to help cover living expenses.
Basic Allowance for Housing
For members who live off-base, an allowance is provided to defray the cost of housing in the Annapolis area. This allowance is based on rank and family status (spouse and/or children living with the member). The current Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) for E-6 members stationed in Annapolis, MD can be found at http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/bahCalc.cfm. This allowance is tax free.
Please refer to the following site for the most up-to-date pay scale: https://www.navy.com/joining/benefits/pay.html
Temporary Duty (TDY) Expenses
When traveling for job-related reasons away from your home base, members receive additional tax-free money to cover meals, lodging, and other incidental expenses.
Members receive an annual tax-free clothing allowance to replace uniform items.
All members of the U.S. Armed Forces are automatically enrolled in TRICARE - the Department of Defense's health care program for active duty personnel, retirees, and their families. Through TRICARE, members receive FREE, comprehensive medical and dental care as needed at one of the Washington, D.C. area military treatment facilities or civilian TRICARE providers. Family members may also be enrolled in TRICARE and receive medical care at military or civilian facilities through various options for little or no cost. Inexpensive dental care programs may be purchased for family members. U.S. Navy members may participate in the Service Members' Group Life Insurance (SGLI) program at very reasonable rates. For example, for only $29 per month, members may purchase life insurance coverage of $400,000.
The U.S. Navy provides a pension for its members who serve for at least 20 years. Retirement income is adjusted each year to compensate for increases in the cost of living. Please note that in order to serve for more than 20 years, advancement to higher rank is required, and retirement will reflect additional time in service.
Vacation Time and Sick Leave
Active-duty members of the U.S. Navy earn 30 days of leave (vacation) each year. Members of performing ensembles usually take their leave at the same time during a designated "blanket leave" period. Requests for leave outside of the blanket leave period are considered on a case-by-case basis and may be approved depending on the performing/rehearsal schedule and mission needs of each ensemble. Special consideration is given to emergency situations and significant family events. Members are not charged leave for sick days, and with doctor authorization members receive as many days as necessary to return to full health.
Funds Available for Education
The U.S. Navy offers educational benefits such as tuition assistance and loan repayment. Most members are eligible to participate in the Veterans Administration's GI Bill program. For more information about the GI bill, go to www.gibill.va.gov. For information about eligibility for any of these programs, contact a Navy recruiter at https://www.navy.com/locator.html.
Commissary and Exchange Privileges
Members and their families are permitted to shop at military commissaries (grocery stores), base exchanges (department stores) and service stations. These facilities offer tax-free shopping and a savings of about 30% over similar off-base stores.
Although most members of the USNA Band have earned undergraduate degrees, a college degree is not required to become a member. Candidates are offered positions solely on the basis of successful auditions and interviews.
For any questions pertaining to legal eligibility for the Navy, contact a Navy recruiter at https://www.navy.com/locator.html.
To be considered for a position with the USNA Band, candidates must not have medical conditions that would prevent them from enlisting in the United States Navy. Candidates must also be between the ages of 17 and 39.
Members of the U.S. Navy are required to maintain high standards of personal appearance, adherence to height/weight requirements and physical fitness. Please refer to the following website about height/weight standards: http://www.military.com/join-armed-forces/navy-weight-rules.html All members are required to pass biannual physical fitness evaluations and are subject to random drug urinalysis testing at any time. Please consider these requirements before making travel arrangements and accepting an invitation to audition.
JOINING THE NAVY
When accepting a position with the United States Naval Academy Band, you will be given an application for the Navy Music Program, allowing you to begin the enlistment process to join the U.S. Navy. Your local recruiter will guide you through each step of the enlistment process. You must take and pass the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB), which is a skills assessment test, and complete a physical exam. The enlistment process is completed at your local Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) where you will sign an enlistment contract. After enlisting, you will go directly to Great Lakes, Ill. to complete Recruit Training.
Recruit Training is an eight-week course at Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill. While attending recruit training, you will learn standard military drill and ceremonies, U.S. Navy history, customs, and courtesies, and will participate in daily physical fitness exercises. Musicians, who are usually well-educated and self-disciplined, tend to do well in recruit training.
After Recruit Training
After graduating from Recruit Training, you will be immediately assigned to the United States Naval Academy Band. You will be given a specific number of travel days to move from your home of record to the Annapolis area.
The Navy will move your household goods up to 11,000 pounds if you have dependents and 8,000 pounds if you do not have dependents. If necessary, the Navy will store your household goods until you find permanent housing. If you decide to move yourself, you will be reimbursed for some of the moving and storage expenses.
At the Naval Academy, the USNA Band performs for dress parades, athletic events, and other traditional events. In the community, the band presents concerts, provides music for civic events, and presents instructional clinics and performances for K-12 and university students. The band also plays for military ceremonies and funerals throughout the mid-Atlantic region.
If you wish, you may participate as a civilian in the Annapolis, Baltimore, and Washington D.C. areas’ active and vibrant performing arts communities or give private lessons to music students. However, if a scheduling conflict should arise, your USNA Band commitments must be met first.
Instruments and Equipment
The Navy will supply you with professional musical instruments as well as the musical supplies you need to accomplish your musical duties.
Each unit of the USNA Band is unique in its scheduling and has different rehearsal/performance requirements that change on a weekly basis according to the mission. A typical non-performance day consists of rehearsals or administrative duties.
As military bands are a traditional part of American patriotic celebrations, you should expect to work on major holidays such as Veteran's Day, Memorial Day, and Independence Day.
As part of a self-contained organization, USNA Band members perform a variety of non-musical duties to ensure efficient daily operations. These duties may range from performing simple clerical work to coordinating and managing the activities of an entire unit.
Members may volunteer to work in one of the following areas:
Public Affairs (publicity and website development and maintenance)
Career Development (career counseling, training, auditions)
Equipment Supply (procurement and inventory)
Information Systems (application development, network administration, software/hardware maintenance)
Vehicles (coordinating maintenance of band vehicles)
An assignment to the United States Naval Academy Band is a permanent duty assignment. This means you will remain a member of the band for your entire enlistment. However, members may request a transfer to another U.S. Navy band or retrain into a different career field. These requests are considered on a case-by-case basis.
Working as a musician in the USNA Band is a full-time profession, not a side activity. You will be an active duty member of the United States Navy. In wartime or peacetime, your primary duty is to perform as a musician.