Hello CMS Band students and parents,
I hope this message finds you and your families well. First off, I want to congratulate our 7th and 8th grade students who represented Calhoun Middle School at the District 1 Large Ensemble Festival on March 5. It was an OUTSTANDING performance, and I was so proud to be a part of that experience with you!! The band received Superior ratings on stage and Excellent ratings in sight reading. I was inspired by the character, self-discipline, and maturity you displayed throughout the festival preparation process. In these unprecedented times I am reminded how important music is to us, individually and as a society, and that we can accomplish truly great things when we work together.
Some of you have asked about returning OPSB-owned instruments to the school. Please refer to Mr. Canal’s message about locker cleanout and returning instruments on our CMS home page. It is important right now that we all adhere to the safety rules and procedures that we have in place.
For those of you who do have your personal instruments at home, I encourage you to keep playing, whether it is scales, exercises out of the method book, songs we have worked on in class, or just playing by ear. I will post practice links and materials here on my teacher page as I find them. The internet, especially Youtube, is chock full of fun and helpful material both for free and available for purchase. I have included our football music for you to print off and practice as you need. We will play these pieces from year to year, and if you misplace a piece or “your dog ate your music” you can find a replacement immediately. I also included “Uptown Funk,” which we played a couple of years ago, just for fun. Students without instruments can read or sizzle/finger through for practice. 7th and 8th graders should be familiar with most of the music, but 6th graders have never worked on it in class. You can email me with questions you might have about challenging notes or rhythms in the music as issues arise. **P.S. For any of our leaders out there, this would be a great opportunity for some peer tutoring/mentoring for our younger players!! That means YOU could make your section stronger!!
Lastly, I want to encourage you all to stay positive throughout this period of uncertainty. We have to have hope and trust that our local, state, and national leaders will do what is in the best interest of our communities and our country. I know it is easy to focus on the restrictions and limitations imposed on us right now due to the gravity of our current situation, but challenge yourselves to focus on finding joy and spreading as much of it as you can. Try to be grateful for what you DO have and let your love for the people you care about be as infectious as this virus. Our community, our school, and of course our band program are special because of YOU!!! I miss you all and look forward to making music with you again very soon!!!
**P.S.** For anyone who is considering joining Band for the first time, please visit the How To Join Band tab as well as the Instrumentation Demonstration video at the bottom of the Educational Websites tab. This will give you a better idea of which instrument you might want to play when we come back to school in August. You do not need to have a definite answer, but it will help us to enroll you in the right class period (woodwind or brass).