CLASSROOM UPDATES:

 JANUARY LESSONS BEGIN THIS WEEK – The lesson calendar and new lesson groups were reviewed class and are available on Dashboard.

·      CAMERAS ON, PLEASE – I’ve asked the students to please have their cameras on during our class time. Thanks!

·      THE MUSIC OF THE SWING ERA – As mentioned in last week’s update, we have begun our study of music from the Swing Era.  Students are learning how to interpret jazz rhythms, articulations and style, and we have been introduced to iconic composers Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and Benny Goodman.

At the end of the unit, we usually present our annual Swing Dance Concert – this would have been our 13th year.  For those new to the program, the concert was held in the gym, in the form of a dance (in old-school prom style, where we decorate the gym and provide light refreshments).  The entire community was invited, a professional dance lesson was offered at the beginning of the evening, and our YHS Band students played swing music for all to enjoy. 

I am sad that we are not able to host our Swing Dance this year. This event has become the highlight of the band calendar, our most beloved tradition, which is a testament to the years of our collective work (students, alumni, community and faculty members, and SO many band parents!) to make it the professional and unique experience that it has become. 

This year, like our winter concert, we will instead put together a virtual presentation for mid-February. 

·      THE SHIM SHAM – Swing music was, literally, made to be danced to. So, as part of our unit, students learn social dances from the period.  Putting the rhythm in their feet, and feeling the “swing” of the beat, helps their ability to interpret the music. This year we are learning a line dance called the “Shim Sham” which was popular in the Harlem Swing venues of the 1930’s (most notably the Savoy Ballroom).  The students learned the first steps this week in class! 

·      NEW APP – This week all students were given access to the A-ccompany app. I am so excited for them to use this awesome practice tool! A-ccompany includes professional recordings of our music, with the ability to isolate individual parts, change the tempo, focus on measures, and choose which instruments to play along with.

JAZZ BAND

Our rehearsal this week will be Thursday 1/14 from 2-3pm via Zoom and A-ccompany.

HOMEWORK due at this rehearsal: Sing, Sing Sing measures 1-50. Be able to play all the correct notes and rhythms at a moderate tempo. Use A-ccompany to guide your practice. Attend your sectional (see below).

GUIDED PRACTICE / EXTRA CREDIT

There are a ton of options this week. Please take advantage of these practice opportunities: the end of the quarter is coming up, and our Swing unit is a quick 6 weeks (with a video assessment and concert at the end!).  

THANK YOU to our awesome upperclassmen for donating their time!

Monday 1/11 – JB Trombone with Colin, JB Tenor Sax with James, Bass Line with Ethan, Clarinet with Emily and Kayla

Tuesday 1/12 – JB Altos with Swaroop, Saxes with Alissa

Wednesday 1/13 – Horn with Alicia, Trumpet with Michael and Trevor

Thursday 1/14 – Clarinet with Sarah

Friday 1/15 – Drums with Mark and Robbie, JB Trumpet with Michael and Trevor

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BRAVO!

Congratulations to all YHS Band students on a beautiful performance at Tuesday’s virtual Winter Concert!  Ms. Kluga is so very proud of you all, both for your musicality and for your patience working with our new technology.  

And, many thanks to the Band Officers (and band parents!) who donated their time to create and deliver our concert goody bags.  Thank you for helping make this a special evening for our students.

2021 CLASSROOM UPDATES:

CAMERAS ON, PLEASE – Ms. Kluga has asked the students to please have their cameras on during our class time. This has especially been an issue in Concert Band, where it is an early morning start…

JANUARY LESSON CALENDAR – The lesson calendar and new lesson groups were reviewed in class today and are available on Dashboard.

THE MUSIC OF THE SWING ERA – For our next unit of study, we will become a “Big Band” from the Swing Era.  Students will learn how to interpret the jazz rhythms, articulations and style associated with this iconic genre of music. Students received their new music today!

NEW APP – This week in class, students will begin using a new app called A-ccompany. This platform gives students access to professional recordings of our swing music, with the ability to isolate (and practice along with) their individual part. Students can change the tempo, choose specific measures to work on, and choose which instruments to play along with. Ms. Kluga piloted this app in the fall with our Jazz Band, and the students found it to be a very useful practice tool.  

JAZZ BAND

Our rehearsal this week will be Thursday 1/7 from 2-3pm via Zoom and A-ccompany. New music will be introduced at this rehearsal.

SIMPLE CITRUS THANKS!

Thank you to those who purchased citrus through our contact-free mail-order-only sale. With your support the YHS Bands sold 155 boxes and earned over $2,100 in profit. Thank you!

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VIRTUAL CONCERT

Our YHS Band Virtual Winter Concert is scheduled for Tuesday 12/22 at 7:00pm, via YouTube. The link will be posted on the YHS homepage. Our concert program is attached for you to enjoy. Please join us for an evening of music!

CONCERT RECEPTION IN A BAG

It is a YHS Band tradition to have a post-concert reception in the cafeteria, to celebrate our performance. This year, the Band Officers have created a bag of goodies for each band student to enjoy while watching our concert. We just need help getting the bags to you!

Concert reception bags will be available for pick up at YHS on Monday morning 12/21 from 8:00am – 2:30pm. If you are able to coordinate picking up bags for other band students that live in your neighborhood, that would be really helpful! Just give your student’s name and they will have your bag for you in the Main Office. Thank you for your help!

DO YOU NEED BAND SUPPLIES?

Are you running out of reeds, valve oil, or cork/slide grease? This is the time of year when band students typically need to replenish these necessary supplies. It is also a time to think about possibly purchasing a new instrument or taking private lessons. If you have questions, Ms. Kluga is happy to help!

VIRTUAL CONCERT

Our YHS Band Virtual Winter Concert is scheduled for Tuesday 12/22 at 7:00pm, via zoom and YouTube. Ms. Kluga will send out the link as we get closer. Please join us for an evening of music!