January 11, 2011By Natalie Haas of Stillman Valley High School
No more practice charts... I don't think they were doing what I had hoped they would do, so I'm changing plans. I will be giving weekly grades to the students based on how they have played in class, and how they are prepared for the music we are rehearsing. I will be able to see if they have practiced at home by how well they are playing in class. We will continue to have playing tests also.
The first 2 pep games were great! I'm looking forward to the rest of them. Again, the dates are Jan 20, 22, 29 and Feb 11.
The Big Northern Music Festival is January 24th. The top players of all of the bands in the schools in our conference form a band and rehearse for the day and give a concert in the evening. Students attending that event will be leaving school at 11:30. They should eat A lunch, and then report to the band room. You can wear school clothes during the day, and bring along black bottom/white top for the concert. Please look at your music so that you're not sightreading it the day of the festival. That day is meant to be used for making music, not learning parts. Stillman students who are going this year are Olivia Peterson, Joe Tackes, Allison Mengel, Kayla Acton, Garrett Hillers, Isaac Robert, Linda Zack, and Kenny Dietz.
You'll be getting a letter soon asking for your help for Stillbucks, which is Feb 3. We'll need people to help set up, serve, clean up, and bring baked goods. It's everybody's most favorite concert of the year, and it takes a lot of work, so if you're available, we'd appreciate your help!
We will work on solo/ensemble music after the Stillbucks concert preparing for contest, which will be held in Byron on March 5. Everyone in Symphonic Band will be required to take something to contest, and concert band students are highly encouraged to take something also. We'll talk about that more in Feb.
In April the bands will be going to IHSA organizational contest, which is where the entire band goes and plays a few pieces for several judges. We haven't done this for a few years, but it is a good experience for us, and we will learn a lot. Concert Band and Symphonic Band will be performing as two separate groups.
As always, if you have questions, feel free to contact me via email or phone. I don't check my email too much after school hours, so if you need to get ahold of me, call or txt me.
I'm looking forward to a great semester!