Course Syllabus





Band_Jazz_Performance Calendar_19-20.pdf

CONCERT ATTIRE bandorc 2019-2020.pdf

The Wellesley High School Two O’Clock Jazz Band is one of two auditioned instrumental jazz groups at WHS. Each group rehearses together three times per seven-day cycle. In the advanced Two O’Clock Jazz Band,there are regular after-school rehearsals and sectionals, and student leaders from each section run weekly sectional rehearsals over the weekend. All musicians in these bands also perform in the WHS Concert Band or Wind Ensemble. Many of them also perform in the Masterworks Orchestra and Pit Orchestra. The select Jazz Bands perform frequently for school and community functions. They also regularly perform for state level MAJE festivals, as well as other area festivals.

The WHS Two O’Clock Jazz Band has been a consistent gold medal recipient at a number of area festivals, and has four-times been named one of the fifteen finalists nationally in the prestigious Essentially Ellington Competition and Festival in Lincoln Center, NYC with master classes from internationally acclaimed jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis. The Two O’Clock Jazz Band has also three times placed first at the Berklee College of Music Jazz Festival in Boston. In 2011, they were selected as one of three public school big bands nationally for the Charles Mingus Competition at the Manhattan School of Music. Over the years, students in the Wellesley Jazz Program have worked with guest performing artists, clinicians and had master classes with: Wynton Marsalis, Wycliffe Gordon, Justin DiCioccio, Herb Pomeroy, Tiger Okoshi, Greg Hopkins and the Berklee Concert Jazz Orchestra, Victor Goines, Byron Stripling, Rodney Whitaker, Ron Carter, Walter Blanding, Jim Snidero, Joe Foley, The Kenny Haddley Big Band, Dino Govoni and Trent Austin. Wellesley’s jazz band curriculum presents students with composers and pieces from throughout the history of jazz and in a wide variety of styles. This year the band is studying and preparing tunes by jazz composers from Buddy Rich to Charles Mingus to Miles Davis and Duke Ellington, and in styles from Swing to Salsa to Bop.


Rehearsal Participation Expectations

The Wellesley High School Two O'Clock Jazz Band performs exciting, challenging, demanding, and intellectually stimulating concert music at a refined level. In a student's four years in the WHS Two O'Clock Jazz Band, (s)he will perform many of the great works in the standard jazz repertoire and new literature. 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 Two O'Clock Jazz 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:

  • THIS CLASS BEGINS PROMPTLY AT 7:30 AM. Students must be in band room by 7:20 AM and ready to play before the downbeat at the bell.
  • Students are prepared with 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 demeanor is 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 engaged in the rehearsal. This includes being ready to play as soon as the count off begins, 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 band room. Water is ok—please place bottles in recycling.


Weekly After-School Rehearsals Wednesdays & Thursdays 2:35-3:30 PM

This is advanced ensemble has two mandatory after-school rehearsals per week on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2:35-3:30 PM. All members of the band are required to be present. *SPORTS - any student taking part in a sport, please talk to coaches to arrange for this time. I allow athletes to leave our rehearsal 15 min early at 3:15 PM and coaches have been very cooperative at letting players arrive 15 min late. We have always enjoyed a strong relationship with the Athletic Department.



It is required for Jazz Band sections to hold weekly rehearsals for two hours outside of school to work on parts.



All Jazz Band members must be taking weekly private lessons. It is a course requirement.



minimum of 4 hours of individual (home) practice per week is required of all WHS Instrumental Students. Your practice will be assessed and graded through your performance in rehearsals. Find your way to make this effective and fun! Most successful members of this ensemble practice much more than 4 hours per week. Remember, “time on horn” is the reason the pros sound like they do…



We are part of the MMEA Eastern District.

*DISTRICTS info can be found at: (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.

*ALL-STATE info can be found under “Auditions” at: (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.


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 school concerts and festivals (e.g. MAJE or Berklee Festivals, etc.). There are only about 10 performances for the whole year, but each performance is vital. Plan your homework time and participation in other activities to incorporate these approx 10 dates. In the case of an urgent family commitment, an email from a parent (not the student) must be sent to Mr. Scott at 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, 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.


Concert Attire

Great bands look sharp and uniform. Look to the greats for inspiration. Appearance lends a great deal to the musical impact a group has. *SEE POPS ORDER FORMS.* Many of these items can be purchased from POPS.  1:00 Jazz Band Men purchase a red tie from POPS, 2:00 Jazz Band Men purchase a black tie from POPS—and both bands wear a personally owned black dress shirt/blouse, black dress pants, black belt, black dress socks and shoes.


Additional Equipment

Everyone needs: a combo lock and a metronome & tuner OR download metronome & tuner apps for your SmartPhone.

Trumpet and trombone players must 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. These are quality mutes, and others’ sound will not match.

Jazz Drummers should own a drum key, brushes and 5A sticks.

Jazz Guitarists & Bassists must own and always bring their own patch cords and electronic tuner every day. For all gigs and festivals they should always bring an extension cord and power strip (you never know where your power supply is coming from), extra strings, picks, a small screw driver, small allen wrench set, and needle nose pliers. Make this your "daily carry" and you'll never get caught unprepared. Learn to handle minor repairs quickly.



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 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 A – Listening Assignment 1 - DUE end of September TBA.

                  Term 1 B – Listening Assignment 2 - DUE beginning of November TBA.

                  Term 2 – 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/MAJE 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 early February. TBA.

                  Term 3 – Individual Playing Exam: This will be a recorded playing exam prepared and recorded individually by all Jazz Band members before Spring Concert/MAJE (early MARCH). Playing exams will have two parts: 1) Performed Excerpts which will be assigned from portions of the Spring Concert/MAJE repertoire, 2) Senior Districts Scales. Students will be graded based on the Senior Districts Rubrics.

                  Term 4 – Spring Concert, parade and post-concert written assessment will comprise this part of the Term 4 grade.


Event Calendar

*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

Band_Jazz_Performance Calendar_19-20.pdf


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, Fenway Park, Berklee Performance Center, 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, regularly placing top three at the Berklee Jazz Festival including three times placing 1st, 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.

Course Summary:

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