Friday, 28 October 2016

- November 1 "sharing" concert for Grade 7 and 8 band.   Students are asked to meet at 6:30p.m. at Campbell
- If you have not already paid for the band t-shirt, please go online and pay.

Coming Up
-Nov. 1 - Grade 7 and 8 performance at 7:00p.m.
-Nov. 23 - Junior Winds and Jazz Band concert
- Dec. 5 - Grade 7 and 8 Winter Concert
- Dec. 6 - Grade 6 Winter Concert

In Grade 6 Band
This week in Grade 6 band we learned two new notes.   These notes we put together with the other five notes we have already learned to make a scale.    We have begun practicing writing these notes.   We have been trying to get students, to hear it,  play it, see it, write it, and then create their own composition with these notes. 
Students were asked to practice:
1.  Page 12 - 2.7 and 2.10

In Grade 7 Band
This week we are putting finally polishes on Daybreak as well as starting new music.   Students were asked to work on dynamics in Daybreak.   Clouds still has one problem section at measure 40.   Students were asked to practice this section.  We continued to work at phrasing and we continued to work at developing the style of the pieces we are performing.   Students have been working on Solfege sheets.   As we have explained to students, the more they learn to sing something, the better they will be able to listen to group balance and blend. 
Students were asked to practice:
Daybreak - run through
Clouds - measure 40 - 46
Starry Night - m. 1-25
Argosy - m. 15 - 43

In Grade 8 Band
This week we kept working on Canticum for our concert on Tuesday, Nov. 1.  We've especially worked on the transitions and continue to work on shaping our phrases.  We've also began working on Amen.  This piece is tricky because of the time signature being 2/2.  It's a new way of counting but we're getting more comfortable with it.  We've taken a bit of a break on the other pieces but will get back to them after the concert.

Friday, 21 October 2016

- Junior Winds - Clinic at the University - Riddell Center - meet at 10:00 on Sat. Oct. 22
- Nov. 1 - concert for Grade 7 and 8 band students

- Congratulations to all Grade 7 and 8 woodwind students on a nice morning at the University on Wednesday.
- Congratulations to Junior Winds Students on a good clinic on Friday morning.

This Week in Grade 6 Band
This week in Grade 6 band we continued to work at long tones, tonguing and our first five notes.   We continued to work on whole, half, quarter, and eighth note rhythms.   We worked very hard at playing together by subdividing beats.   
Grade 6's were asked to practice:
1.   1.25, 1.26, 1.27 and 1.31.
2.   Experiment with notes on fingering charts
3.   Compose with our first five notes

This Week in Grade 7 Band
We are in the process of preparing for our Nov. 1 concert as well as our December concert.   For our November concert students will be performing Daybreak.   They are asked to make sure they have all notes and rhythms worked out.   As well we began working on sections of Argosy.   Students were asked to practice measures 15-35.  

This Week in Grade 8 Band

Most students have done their playing test on the first 25 measures of Canticum.  Some will finish next week.  We started paying through our other pieces: Amen, Resplendent Light, and Marche Diabolique.  We will continue to add these pieces to our repertoire.

Friday, 14 October 2016


- Grade 7 and 8 Woodwind Days permission forms are now due
- Junior Winds needs to meet at the University at 10:00a.m. on Sat. Oct. 22 at Riddell Theater.   They will be finished at 11:30a.m.    -

Coming Up
-Woodwind Days - Oct. 19 - Grade 7 and 8 flute, bassoon, clarinet, bass clarinet and saxophone players will be bused to the university at 9:30a.m. on Oct. 19.   Students need to bring a lunch.   They will participate in clinics, and be treated to a concert.   Students will be bused back at 12:30p.m.  
- Junior Winds Clinic - Oct. 21 - 9:30-10:30a.m. at Campbell. 
- Junior Winds at University Sat. Oct. 22 - 10:00 meet at Riddell, will be finished at 11:30a.m. 

This Week in Grade 6 Band
We are continuing to work on our breathing, and continuing to work on our first five notes.   Brass players are working on lip slurs.  Woodwind players are working on long tones.   Percussionists are working on sticking on mallets.    Everyone is working on rhythm reading.   We have read whole, half, quarter, eighth, and some of us even have tried sixteenth notes.    When we first begin  reading music is an obstacle for some students.   We are using our composition books to practice writing and naming our first five notes.    Students who found this very easy were asked to instead write their own composition using the first five notes.   We practiced composing using scale numbers and volunteer composer/conductors came up to do an on the spot composition.    We also learned the twelve bar blues and started learning the jazz standard C Jam Blues. 

Students were asked to:
1.  Practice - 1.21, 1.22, 1.23, 1.24
2.  Experiment - by looking at their fingering or rudiment chart on p.55
3.  Create - their own composition using 5 notes

This Week in Grade 7 Band
We are working very hard at subdivisions.    Many of us seem to struggle with keeping the same pulse!   Students are encouraged to download a free metronome app to help them keep a steady pulse.   We also began working on chromatic scales.   We explained the importance of chromatic as practicing these not only helps with hand position, but it reminds us of fingerings.   We began practicing the chromatic scale first by using our fingering charts and moving up one "box" in our chart at a time.  We have also been experimenting with matching sounds.   Students were asked to take ownership of bringing their section in, and then attempt to create a unison pitch.   Students are in the process of playing 40 - end of Clouds for us.   We are getting ready to move on to new music and so students need to make sure they have Clouds and Daybreak learned. 
Students were asked to:
1.   Practice 40 - end of Clouds
2.   Practice their chromatic scale

This Week in Grade 8 Band
This week we had a great clinic with Mr. G at the U of R.  Mr. G talked about adding emotion to the music as well as shaping the phrase and we sounded really good by the end of it.  Both pieces are coming along nicely but we still need to work on the fine details.

The next piece we are going to start on is Resplendent Light.  This piece is not technically too difficult but is incredibly hard in regards to the emotional element.

The next playing test is on the first 26 measures of Canticum.

Friday, 7 October 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!

- Grade 8 Retreat forms are now due
- Grade 7 and 8 Woodwind days forms need to be returned next week

Coming Up
Wed. Oct. 12 - Grade 8 Retreat at the University
Wed. Oct. 19 - Woodwind Day at the University in the morning
Sat. Oct. 22 - Junior Winds workshop with Dr. MacKay meet at 10:00 at Riddell Theater  and leave and will be done at 11:40a.m.  
Nov. 23 - Jazz Band and Junior Winds Band Room Concert 7:00p.m.
Dec. 5  - Grade 7 and 8 Concert
Dec. 6 - Grade 6 Concert

Grade 6 Band
This week in Grade 6 Band we practiced our first five notes.   Each instrument has its own challenges with this.   Flutes tend to struggle with moving fingers quickly, clarinets usually find it awkward covering holes and saxophones sometimes struggle with not hitting the side keys and not using too much mouthpiece.   Brass students tend to struggle with either their low notes or high notes.  Percussionists usually find it tricky at first seeing notes on the bells.   All of these struggles are normal and take a little time.    We also worked on music reading.   To do this in our composition books students practiced writing their first five notes.     We will continue to use our composition books regularly.  
Students were asked to practice:
1.  Lines 1.16, 1.17. 1. 18. 1. 20 from our blue book.
2.  Practice writing our first five notes.
3.  Try listening to a clip of our instrument from a you tube video.
4.   We listed a song for fun that students could experiment with.

In Grade 7 Band
This week in Grade 7 band we worked on 3/4 time, solfege, the chromatic scale, and subdividing.   To learn 3/4 time we worked both from our orange book and worked on Clouds 46-end.  To learn the chromatic scale we used our fingering chart and followed each fingering as it moved up beginning on our concert Bb.   We have continued to work on our balance and our blend, and are continuing with the Breathing Gym to work on our air. 
Students were asked to practice:
1.  Clouds 46 - end
2.   Chromatic Scale using our fingering

In Grade 8 Band
In preparing for our clinic this Wednesday, the Grade 8's have been working on shaping phrases.  We've discussed and marked in our music places to breathe and the dynamics that should be used, even if they aren't marked.  Everyone has played through their circle of 4ths test.  Now we need to focus on the ends of the pieces and the transitions.