Royal Marines Musician

High priority role
Service:Royal Marines
Branch:Royal Marines Band Service
Level:Rating,Apprenticeship
Royal Marines Band Service
Music
A Royal Marine Musician performing their duty.
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The role at a glance

What you’ll do

As a musician in the world-famous Royal Marines Band Service you’ll be part of the world’s most versatile military music organisation. 

Employed all over the world you’ll find yourself performing at National and International events, major sporting fixtures and in prestigious concert venues, as well as undertaking operational roles alongside the rest of the Royal Navy and Royal Marines. 

No two days are ever the same, but why would you want them to be? 

You will be the public face of the Royal Navy, so do what you love and join us on the world stage!

If you have questions, talk to us

Your role

  • Spend time at the Royal Marines School of Music (RMSoM), learning your craft and mastering the full range of musical styles that make up our repertoire.
  • Share the stage with the team of like-minded, talented musicians across a wide variety of styles; from string quartets and jazz ensembles to marching bands and full symphonic wind bands.
  • Make a vital contribution to our nation’s defence diplomacy strategy performing at military, ceremonial and social events on the world’s biggest stages.
  • Play an important role in the Royal Marines Band Service’s vital medical and logistical function, supporting the Royal Navy and 3 Commando Brigade all over the world.

What you’ll get

Skills for life

Skills you'll develop

  • The ability to perform in a team or as an individual, in a variety of musical combinations
  • Perform a wide range of musical styles; from Pop to Classical
  • An eye for detail in both your musical performance and personal uniform and kit
  • A flexible and adaptable mindset
  • Pride in yourself and the service

Qualifications you'll gain

  • Opportunity to gain civilian qualification such as ABRSM grades/Diplomas
  • DAO Level 3 Diploma in Military Music
  • Professional examinations at key career landmarks often accredited or recognised by civilian industry
  • The opportunity to study Bachelor of Music degree (fully-funded)

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Career progression

What you'll need

Eligibility

  • Aged 16 to 32 when you start Basic Training
  • No qualifications are required for this role
  • You ideally need to be able to read music, and sing or play a brass, wind, string, piano or percussion instrument to a good standard (ABRSM Grade 5 as a minimum, Grade 7 for pianists)
  • A National of the United Kingdom, a Commonwealth Citizen or Dual National
  • Minimum height of 145cm
  • A BMI between 18 and 28 (17 and 27 if under 18)
  • Be a competent swimmer

Skills and interests

  • Playing a musical instrument 
  • Performing in public
  • Working as part of a team
  • A real sense of adventure 
     
Check Eligibility

Starting your career

Joining process

Once you’ve confirmed your eligibility, the joining process is as follows:

  • Submit an application

    Once you’ve registered your interest and have satisfied the basic eligibility criteria, you will be sent an online application form

  • Naval Service Recruitment Test (NRST)

    You’ll be tested on general reasoning, verbal ability, numeracy and mechanical comprehension

  • Interview

    A formal interview to talk through your suitability for the role

  • Medical and eye tests

    These are quite comprehensive and must be completed by one of our Ministry of Defence-approved doctors

  • Audition and Test

    The audition process includes being evaluated by world-class civilian Professors, interviewed by the Director of Music (Training) and assessed for your level of physical fitness. Post-audition you may be given the opportunity to learn a new instrument.

Initial training

First and foremost, the Royal Marines Band Service is a military unit, so you’ll spend your first few months learning all of the practical skills you need to be an effective member of the wider Royal Marines team.

This phase of training concentrates on physical fitness and basic soldiering. You’ll need to have a high level of fitness to cope with your performance workload, as well as your military role.

Our immaculate drill is something that makes us unique, so you’ll also spend plenty of time learning how to march correctly and play your instrument at the same time. 

There's also a swimming test, so if you can't swim, make sure you learn by the time you join us.

Professional training

After your initial military training you’ll spend time at the RMSoM developing your skills and mastering one or more instruments.

You’ll have a civilian professor of music, who will have considerable musical experience, for each instrument you’re learning. You’ll have individual weekly lessons with them, and your own practice room to work on your technique.

You’ll also be in the capable hands of a Band Service Instructor. They’ll be an experienced player of the instrument you’re learning, and will keep an eye on your progress, advising on technique and helping to sort out any problems.

It’s intensive training, but it’s also a fantastic way to develop your musical skills quickly and correctly. By the end of it, you’ll be ready to join one of the five bands as a fully trained Musician.