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WELCOME to the 2019-2020 WELLESLEY HIGH SCHOOL CONCERT BAND
Director, Mr. Steven Scott
Intensives: John Breedis, Kosal Carter, Stephen Charkoudian, Alex Haidar, Russell Hornung, Julianne Klurfeld, Thatcher Maconga, Jackson O’Toole, Tony Rendell, Gary Shou, M Stock, Eric Thompson, Josh Wornell
Last Year’s Highlights: Spamalot! (Fall Musical) • Pep Band • Districts & All-State • Trip to BSO at Symphony Hall • Concert Band & Wind Ensemble earn Gold Medal at Great East Festival & Six Flags Trip • Wind Ensemble earns Gold Medal at MICCA Festival • 2:00 Jazz Band earns Gold Medal at MAJE Jazz Fest and wins Outstanding Band Award at Essentially Ellington Regional Jazz Festival • WHS hosts MAJE Jazz Combo Festival and WHS Jazz Combo earns Silver Medal • Fauré Requiem Combined Performance • Memorial Day Services
The Wellesley High School Concert Band is one of two wind bands at WHS. All students are welcome to take part in the Concert Band regardless of experience. They rehearse together five times per seven-day cycle during the regular school day. Wellesley’s band curriculum brings students in contact with composers and selections from throughout the wind band repertoire and in a variety of styles. Many musicians in the Concert Band also perform in the Jazz Bands and a number of them also perform in the Pit Orchestra. The Concert Band and Wind Ensemble combine to perform as a pep band for home football games in the Fall and for several community events in the Spring. Both bands regularly take part in the MICCA Concert Band Festival. Students take private lessons through our adjunct lesson faculty after school. This faculty also coaches a number of small ensembles.
Rehearsal Participation Expectations
The Wellesley High School Concert Band performs exciting, challenging, demanding, and intellectually stimulating concert music at a refined level. In a student's four years in the WHS Concert Band, (s)he will perform many of the great works in the standard repertoire and new literature for wind band. This requires strong musicianship and technique, efficient use of rehearsal time, focus and maturity, combined with spirit, dedication, and pride on the parts of WHS Concert Band-members. All members are part of a unified team and should see themselves as leaders who can help shape an inspiring experience.
Some specific expectations for rehearsals include:
• Students are in bandroom before the belland ready to play before the downbeat 2 minutes after the bell. Reed players especially need to move it to be ready! Please check the board and put music in rehearsal order as noted.
• Students are preparedwith their instrument, mutes, music, and a PENCIL. Effective practice and progress as a musician are also critical. See GRADING.
• Once the rehearsal has started, rehearsal demeanoris maintained. Look to the Senior Intensives, section leaders, your own sense of pride and your aspirations for the group to dictate what this should be for the group of which you want to be a part.
• Students are actively engagedin the rehearsal. This includes being ready to play as soon as the stick is raised, putting forth effective effort to achieve the musical goal that is set, marking parts whenever a mistake is made, and helping others when needed. Moreover, think critically about what the musical goal is or should be. How can you help your section or the band achieve this? Remember that music is beautiful and exciting! Savor the goosebumps!
• Maintaining the bandroom and equipment. This includes putting folders and instruments away in the instrument lockers, taking great care with school owned instruments and equipment, and leaving the bandroom neat. NO FOOD OR DRINK IS ALLOWED ANYWHERE IN THE BANDROOM. Water is ok—please place bottles in recycling!
All Concert Band members are highly encouragedto take private lessons. Please understand how critical it is to receive instruction on your instrument. Concert Band rehearsals focus on teaching ensemble skills. Students are not given detailed personal instruction on how to improve their own instrumental playing in band rehearsals. This is why it is imperative that all students receive private instruction on their instruments.
We are part of the MMEA Eastern District.
*DISTRICTS info can be found at: mmeaeasterndistrict.org (Links to an external site.)
*ALL-STATE info can be found under “Auditions” at: massmea.org (Links to an external site.)
A minimumof 4 hours of individual (home) practice per week is required of all WHS Instrumental Students. Find yourway to make this effective and fun!Remember, “time on horn”is the reason the pros sound like they do…
It is required for Jazz Band and Wind Ensemble sections to hold rehearsals once per week for two hours outside of school to work on parts. It is highly recommended for Concert Band sections to plan to do the same. It works!
Concert Attendance Policy
Being a part of an exceptional band takes spirit, dedication, and pride. Every single member is a vital part of the unified whole. Band members are expected to participate in ALL public performances. This includes ALL home football games, parades, school concerts, and festivals (e.g. MICCA or MAJE Festivals). There are only about 10 band performances for the whole year (select groups will add more), but each performance is vital. Plan your homework time and participation in other activities to incorporate these 10 dates. In the case of an urgent family commitment, a note from the student's parents must be presented to Mr. Scott no later than two weeks prior to the event. If a conflict is known well in advance, it is of course expected that it will be brought up and resolved right away, not later.In the case of illness, a parent email should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, as far in advance as possible, or if this is not possible, then a note should be handed in upon return to school. All excused-missed performances must be made up through extra work or responsibilities to be assigned. Unexcused-missed performances may not be made up. Please remember you are joining a team that depends on you for your talent and your positive spirit! No team member is expendable and no performance more or less important than another.
Great bands look sharp and uniform. Look to the greats for inspiration. Appearance lends a great deal to the musical impact a group has. For all concerts, Wind Ensemble members should wear a personally-owned tuxedo, which includes black tux jacket, black tux pants, black dress shoes and black socks, white long-sleeved collared tux shirt, and black bow tie ORour Band/Orchestra long black formal dress—note that for correct style dress, easiest ordering of tux items and best prices all items should be ordered online from our vendor. Online links will be shared to your email at the start of school.For Band Step-Up we wear Band T-Shirts. For the Town Parade and Memorial Day Services, Wind Ensemble members should wear our Band T-Shirts, black pants and black shoes. For all home football games, students should dress comfortably for the weather, but neatly, and wear personally owned red "Wellesley Raiders" hooded Pep Band Jacket purchased from POPS. 1:00 Jazz Band Menpurchase a solid redsatin tie online, 2:00 Jazz Band Menpurchase a solid blacksatin tie online—and both bands wear a black dress shirt/blouse, black dress pants, black belt, black dress socks and shoes.
Everyone needs: a combo lock, a flip folder & lyre (for Pep Band), and a Korg TM-40 metronome/tuner OR download metronome & tuner apps for your SmartPhone.
Trumpet and trombone playersmust own a straight mute (Tom Crown) and a cup mute (Dennis Wick). Jazz plungers for trumpet (4 ½”) and trombonists (7”), and jazz trumpet players often need a Harmon mute (Jo-Ral Bubble) and a pixie mute (Humes & Berg). Horn players must also own a Humes & Berg mute. **Please get these specific brands/models. Others’ sound will not match.
Percussionists must own a drum key, stick bag and at least 2B sticks. Jazz players should also own brushes and 5A sticks.
Public Performances - 25%
Please see Concert Attendance Policy. Music is a form of communication and is meant to be shared and celebrated. Public performances represent the culmination of performing arts studies in the manner a final exam does for a science or history class. Students are required to perform at ALL HOME FOOTBALL GAMES, PARADES, CONCERTS, AND FESTIVALS.Absences from concerts will result in a zero for that event for this portion of the grade.
Daily Preparation and Class Participation - 50%
Please see Rehearsal Participation Expectations.This portion of the student's grade will also include group-assessment activities after recorded rehearsals and concerts. Students will hand in written evaluations of the group's progress done during class in response to recordings of the concerts.
Musical Self-Improvement Activities - 25%
Term 1 – Intonation Chart: On a provided piece of graph paper, for the X-axis write the letter names of a chromatic scale from your instrument’s lowest note (starting at the left) to your highest note (to the right). Next, turn on your tuner and tune your instrument using your intrument’s “good” tuning notes—e.g.Bb, F or A. Then play the first note of the chromatic scale with your eyes closed. When you feel the note is steady and centered (do not adjust with your embouchure), open your eyes and note where the pitch is on your tuner. Plot on your graph exactly how sharp or flat the note is—e.g. 3 cents sharp would be plotted at +3 on your graph for that pitch. Why is this important to know about your instrument? DUE end of October TBA.
*Trombonists should tune to a Bb and then complete an Intonation Chart for all pitches in 1stposition including the very flat high Ab (hint!) and high Bb (or higher where possible). You may find yourself considering alternate positions for some out-of-tune 1stposition notes (e.g. middle D). Now you can regularly practice your chromatic scale slowly, playing each note with your eyes closed first and then opening your eyes and checking your tuner. See how close you can get! DUE end of October TBA.
Term 2 – Metronome Day! Students will perform a SHORT selection (8-16 measures) of the band music using their own metronome (Korg TM-40). The goal here is for students to demonstrate their ability to play at a steady tempo along with a metronome. Is this easy to do without practice? Can this be learned? Done during class beginning of Nov. TBA.
Term 3 – Section/Group Playing Exam: Class time will be allotted so that I can hear each section/small groups perform pre-selected highlights from the Spring concert/MICCA repertoire and pre-selected scales. The goal is to give students more instrument-specific feedback on how their technique and musicianship in progressing. Done during class mid-March. TBA.
Term 4 – Spring Concert, parade and graduation will comprise this part of the Term 4 grade.
*NOTE: Please put applicable dates on your family calendar so that parents are aware of them. Check all dates now and resolve conflicts right away. It is required that students will not wait until two weeks before the event to inform Mr. Scott if a conflict is known earlier. We can fix things now
About the Director
Steven Scott has been teaching instrumental music and music technology at Wellesley High School for the past twenty-two years. Ensembles under Mr. Scott's direction have received state and national recognition—performing at venues including Boston Symphony Hall, Mechanics Hall in Worcester, the Boston Hatch Shell, Berklee Performance Center Fenway Park, Manhattan School of Music, and at Lincoln Center with master classes from Wynton Marsalis. Ensemble accolades include consistent gold medal ratings at MICCA Concert Band Festivals and MAJE Jazz Festivals, being named a National Finalist for the Charles Mingus High School Competition, and four times a National Finalist in the Essentially Ellington Competition. Mr. Scott has also served as a Teaching Associate at Boston University teaching music technology and instrumental repertoire. He and the WHS Wind Ensemble have been featured performers at the Massachusetts Music Educators Association All-State Conference where Mr. Scott has also been a music technology presenter in the past. Mr. Scott has taken part in a number of music education conferences and has had master conducting classes with Herb Pomeroy and Peter Loel Boonshaft. He earned a B.S. in Music Education from The College of St. Rose in Albany, N.Y. where he was named the Theodore Presser Scholar, and a M.A. in Music Education from the Eastman School of Music where he studied with composers Sidney Hodkinson and Fred Sturm. He is currently completing a second masters degree in Music Production at Berklee College of Music.
Students in the Wellesley Band Program begin instrumental lessons in 4th grade in our after-school Extension Lesson program. All lessons take place at WHS or WMS, and meet for a half-hour once per week. As students progress they join the Wellesley All-Town Band taught by Ms. Julie Verret and Mr. Dave Adams. All-Town Band meets weekly as separate groups in each of our seven elementaries, and then once per month as a full ensemble. At Wellesley Middle School students advance to the 6th, 7th and 8th Grade Bands all of which are also taught by Mr. Adams during the school day. At the end of the 8th grade all students may enroll in the WHS Concert Band and some advanced players are recommended to audition for the Wind Ensemble.
The syllabus page shows a table-oriented view of the course schedule, and the basics of course grading. You can add any other comments, notes, or thoughts you have about the course structure, course policies or anything else.
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