Dear Parents/Guardians and Students,
It is with great anticipation that I welcome you to Symphonic Band. I would like to offer my congratulations to all the new members and hope you are as excited as I am to be a part of this wonderful ensemble. To the returning members, I know that we can build on our successes of last year and look forward to continuing our journey during this school year. My hope is that this year will be productive and successful for all of us as we explore various musical genres and composers from different eras. This letter outlines the goals and expectations for the year so that together we can achieve musical excellence.
1. Practicing: Practicing is an essential element of being a musician. For the entire band to be successful everyone must put in regular practice time. There will be regular check in assignments for the students with submissions through flip grid or google. These submissions will count as a homework assignment and will be factored in with any written assignments for the quarter. My expectation is that we have two culminating performance opportunities for the year and the students will be expected to perform to a reasonable level. Parents will be notified well in advance of any student who has fallen behind to this degree.
2. Lessons: Group lessons are essential for us to be successful as an ensemble; therefore, students will be scheduled for a maximum of five group lessons per quarter. The lessons will be rotated through periods one, three, five, seven, eight and nine. All missed lessons need to be made up before the next scheduled lesson for full credit to be received. If the missed lesson is not made up before the next scheduled lesson, the student will receive half credit upon completion of the makeup. A student will be allowed to make up a lesson if they miss it due to a test, lab, having difficulties in a particular class, or if they are absent that day. A note from the respective classroom teacher must be handed in explaining their absence. The students are responsible for attending their makeup lesson and will receive a zero for that lesson if they do not. The lesson grade will comprise 45% of the quarter grade.
3. Rehearsal: Participation in daily rehearsals will account for 45% of the quarter grade. It will be based on attendance, effort, attentiveness, cooperation, lateness, and preparedness during rehearsals. If the music is not played at an acceptable level of preparedness this will have a major impact on the student’s quarter grade. Parents will be notified if an unacceptable pattern of behavior is developing. Being prepared for rehearsals and lessons is another important element of our ensemble. Being prepared is comprised of having your instrument in good working order, which includes having all the necessary equipment for your instrument (including cork grease, valve oil, mutes, reeds, mallets, etc.) and always having a pencil in your folder. As in previous years, all percussionists are required to provide their own mallets and drumsticks in their own stick bag which they should bring to every rehearsal and lesson. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. Students will be given a folder and music; it is the students responsibility to have it for all lessons and rehearsals. There will be no sharing of music or method books! Folders and music will be checked at various times during the quarter, and not being prepared will affect your grade. The music is considered your text for the class and should not be marked or defaced in any way that is not appropriate for the classroom. Students will be responsible for replacing any lost or ruined music at the price determined by the publisher. It is essential that all instruments be secured at the end of rehearsals and lessons. All wind instruments will be provided with a small spray bottle of sterisol to clean their mouthpieces at the end of each rehearsal.
Note to Percussionists:
All percussionists are required to have the following:
- Your own stick bag
- Drumsticks VF 5b
- Timpani mallets VF T4
- Hard mallets VF M3
- Medium hard mallets VF M7
- Brass mallets M145
4. Written Work: Written work will be a component of the ensemble and will comprise 10% of the quarterly grade. Written work will include self-evaluation on performances, worksheets, as well as other in-class assignments.
5. Mandatory Performances:
Saturday, September 17, 2022, Homecoming
Tuesday, December 20, 2022, Miller Place High School Auditorium 7:30pm
Tuesday, May 23, 2023, Miller Place High School Auditorium 7:30pm
Friday, June 24, 2023 Miller Place High School Graduation 6:00pm
6. NYSSMA Festivals:
Classical Piano Monday, March 20, 2023-Thursday, March 24, 2023, Riverhead School District
Jazz, Classical Guitar Friday, April 21, 2023-Saturday, April 22, 2023, Sachem School District
Classical (Except Piano) NYSSMA Levels 1-6 Tuesday, April 25, 2023, Miller Place School District
Classical ALL-STATE ONLY Friday, May 19,2023-Saturday, May 20, 2023, Shoreham-Wading River School District
It is my hope that this letter gets us all started in the right direction towards the common goal of performing music to the best of our ability and working together in a positive atmosphere to achieve that success. I am very excited to be working with all of you this year, and hope that we can build on the Miller Place tradition of reaching a high level of performance. With everyone's cooperation and support I know that will be possible.