Weekly Update – 11/30/16

Good morning,

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving week full of time with family and friends.  

There are a few important items for the next two weeks that I wanted to bring to your attention.

Calendar Events 

Tonight:

– 5:00 – Tuesday Prime Jazz Band (as they are calling it)

– 6:00 – Tuesday Jazz

Wednesday:

– 6:30 – Music Boosters

Thursday:

– 7:00 a.m – Morning Band

– 5:00 p.m – Thursday Jazz Winds Sectional

– 6:00 p.m – Thursday Jazz

Saturday:

– 8:00 a.m – The BJHS Tree and Wreath Sale – we are looking for volunteers to come and play with Ms. Anderson’s “Carol Band”. If your son or daughter is interested, please let me know. Even if they can only come for an hour, it is still very much appreciated.

– 5:00 p.m – The Night of Swing and Jazz Silent Auction and Concert

Tuesday – 12/6/16

– 7:00 a.m – Morning Band

– 5:00 p.m – Tuesday Prime

– 6:00 p.m – Tuesday Jazz

Wednesday – 12/7/16

– 5:00 p.m – Thursday Jazz Rhythm Section

– 6:00 p.m – Thursday Jazz

Thursday – 12/8/16

– CONCERT DAY! Please See attached for info and exact times

Friday – 12/9/16

– 6:00 p.m – our first basketball game for the year!

Saturday – 12/10/16

– NEMFA Auditions. Please see attached for info and exact times

IMPORTANT INFO

Students should be turning in their sold raffle tickets and concert tickets THIS WEEK! This is our largest fundraiser and has the opportunity to bring in some serious cash to offset the cost of the band trip significantly. If you need more tickets, please have your son or daughter see Mrs. Van Slyck in band today or Thursday. By Thursday, ALL TICKETS SOLD OR OTHERWISE will need to be returned so we can account for them.

Thank you to those who have already signed up to volunteer for Saturday’s event.  We are still looking for more people to help out with the event. We appreciate any assistance you can give!! Please click the link below for a list of what needs to be done

http://www.signupgenius.com/go/805084babad29aa8-night

As this is the time of year when people start thinking of gifts and such, I have put together a list of “Holiday Gift Ideas night-of-swing-and-jazz-info-letter-pdf december-2016-dates-pdf” that I have attached here.  There are so many different gifts you can give (the biggest and least expensive being the gift of time!) I thought it would be helpful to compile them into one place. I have many, many more suggestions so please, feel free to contact me if you want more thoughts for your son or daughter.

December is a bit of a whirlwind. The concert next Thursday is one of the highlights of the month for not only me, but also for our kids. I am so excited to share their learning with you! I hope you are all looking forward to the performance. 

As always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me.

Thank you so much for all you do! 

~ Mike

2 Important Items

Good morning all,

I have 2 quick items for everyone today.  

First – Jazz Tonight has been moved to 5 – 7. This is to allow our kids in the Thursday Night Band to go see “The Great Gatsby” (many were asking for the change) since we are missing tomorrow night’s performance. There is NO sectional 4 – 5.

Second – After a bunch of back and forth, I finally have all the pertinent info for tomorrow’s state game. Here is the plan:

1:45 – pep rally at School during period 7/8

2:10 – School Ends – Band kids report to the band room and pack up

2:30 – Busses Depart BHS for UMAINE 

4:30 – Busses arrive at the UMAINE campus

4:45 – Pizza!

5:30 – Run through of the Banner with the band from Kennebunk

6:30 – Pre–Game

7:00 – Game time

10:00 – Anticipated depart time (this is totally up in the air and depends on the length of the game)

12:00 – Arrival back at school

Several students have asked about transportation/ release from the game. I have attached a Travel Release Form that absolutely MUST be turned in to me. I cannot allow students to leave the game with anyone unless I have this form. Please see Ms. Crofton or Mr. Gagnon if you have questions.

I believe that is all I have. The weather is looking great for tomorrow. Hopefully it won’t be overly cold.  PLEASE have them dress accordingly. I said it this morning in Wind Ensemble, “Prepare for the worst, hope for the best”.

Thank you so much for all of your help with this! I am looking forward to spending another great afternoon making music with our kids.

Have a great day!

~ Mike

Weekly Update – 11/7

Good morning all,

I hope you are enjoying the beautiful fall weather! There isn’t too much to talk about for the next few weeks but I wanted to send out this reminder just to keep everything clear.

Today – Monday – 11/7

– 5:00 – Tuesday Jazz Sectional (the students involved know who they are)

– 6:00 – Tuesday Jazz

* REMINDER – All Jazz students should be dressed in their concert attire for Photos tonight *

Tomorrow – Tuesday – 11/8 

– No school. Please go vote.

Wednesday – 11/9

– 5:00 p.m – All Thursday Night Jazz Winds

– 6:00 p.m – Thursday Night Jazz

* REMINDER – All Jazz students should be dressed in their concert attire for Photos tonight *

Thursday – 11/10

– 4:30 p.m – Trip to the Jazz Ambassadors Performance at Boothbay Opera House

– Bus Departs for Boothbay

– 7:00 p.m – Performance

– 10:00 p.m – Bus Returns to BHS (approximate time)

Friday – 11/11 – FOOTBALL GAME!!!!

– No School. THANK YOU to all the Veteran’s out there.

– 6:00 p.m. Football Game. 

– IT WILL BE COLD! PLEASE DRESS IN LAYERS!!!!

That is all the calendar items this week. Next week is business as usual, however, I wanted to draw your attention to the State Football game NEXT Friday!!!!

Here are the details as I know them:

  • The busses will depart BHS around approximately 3 p.m (possibly 2:30)
  • We will eat in Bangor somewhere. I am trying to find a space to accommodate all our kids.
  • The game is at 7 at the University of Maine in Orono.
  • Return time is approximately 11:30 p.m

I believe this is all I have for this week! I hope to see you all on Friday at the game!

~ Mike

Weekly Update – 10/31

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

As I am sure you all know by now, today is the annual “Halloween Parade”.

This information has gone out several times but I thought I would reiterate since I am sure teenagers are super good at communication.

Students will need to be dressed in costume. A quick reminder: Costumes should not interfere with their ability to march or play.

Students who opt not to dress in costume should wear the black concert pants, Memorial Day orange polo shirt, and black shoes (no sneakers)

2:30 – Bus departs BHS for BJHS

5:30 – Busses pick us up at Hawthorne School

STUDENTS MAY BE DISMISSED FROM THE END OF A PARADE WITH A NOTE! It is important that I see you with your son or daughter following the parade so I don’t accidentally leave someone in downtown Brunswick.

A quick reminder: In addition to the parades being a required event, students DO get community service for these events!!!! All they need to do is bring an orange community service slip to me and I will sign it. A student who is in band for 4 years can get all 30 hours of community service just by being in parades (which they are required to do anyway 🙂 ).  Kind of a win, win.

Calendar Events

Monday – Halloween Parade. See above.

Tuesday – 7:00 a.m – Morning Band

 5:00 p.m – Sectional for the students I have spoken to about jazz. NOT SAXOPHONES AS THE CALENDAR STATES!

 6:00 p.m – Tuesday Jazz

Wednesday – 6:30 p.m – Music Boosters Meeting – Band Room! 

Thursday – 7:00 a.m – Morning Band

5:00 p.m – All Thursday Jazz Winds

6:00 p.m – Thursday  Night Jazz

Friday –  All State Auditions!!!

4:30 p.m – Bus Departs BHS for Skowhegan Area High School

7:00 p.m – Bus Arrives in Skowhegan

10:00 p.m – Bus Departs Skowhegan

12:30 a.m – Bus Arrives at BHS

– Students should bring money for dinner, their instrument, and a tuner

*** Students should be dressed up for their audition. They may bring casual clothes to change in to following their audition but should not plan on changing into formal wear when they arrive. ***

CONGRATULATIONS!

A huge congratulations go out to our band students who were accepted into the 2016-2017 District 3 Honors Band:

Josie Adolf

Keegan Arnold

Julia Baumgarte

Sophie Blair

Katie Bojarski

Ethan Boll

Grace Casey

Emily Cowan

Niles Dorn

Bailey Fike

Josh Flanagan

Chapman Hall

Cordelia Horch

Rowan Horton

Hollie Imperato

Bailey Jones

Erin Marc-Aurele

Emma Miller

Alexandra Morse

Aidan Perkinson

Carly Poulton

Henry Raker

Kyra Teboe

Autumn Thoits

Anna Webster

Emma White

Nick White

The scores were extremely good and cutoffs for each instrument were quite high. I try and remind the kids that it isn’t necessarily a reflection on their abilities.  Some rooms (flute, clarinet, alto, percussion) have a TON of kids audition who are extremely talented, most of which don’t get in. I am proud of each and every one of our musicians.

Football Pep Band

Here are the remaining dates for our involvement in the 2016 Football Season:

– Friday – November 11th – Home – Conference Championships

– Friday – November 18th – University of Maine at Orono – State Game!

– The busses are going to depart BHS at approximately 3:00 this Friday. 

– Students will need money for dinner. I am working out details for that as we speak

– They should dress according to the weather. My guess is that it will be particularly chilly. Plan accordingly PLEASE!!! I Will provide hand and toe warmers.

I believe that is all I have for this update. I look forward to seeing you at the boosters meeting on Wednesday at 6:30!

Have a great halloween!

~ Mike

Weekly Update – 10/26

Good morning all,

I hope this email finds you well.

I wanted to give you some important information as the next couple of weeks are hectic.

Calendar Items:
Attached, please find 2 important calendars: 1) the UPDATED version of the calendar for 2016-2017, and 2) The Jazz rehearsal schedule for the next month. Please note the following:

Tonight – Wednesday:
5:00 p.m – Thursday Night Jazz Winds Sectional
6:00 p.m – Thursday Night Jazz (yes, on a Wednesday)

Tomorrow – Thursday:
Thursday JAZZ Performance for MSMA
10:45 a.m – Bus Departs BHS for Augusta Civic Center
11:30 a.m – Bus arrives at ACC
12:30 p.m – Thursday Jazz Performs for Maine School Management Association
1:00 p.m – Bus departs ACC
1:15 p.m – Lunch (please bring money)
3:00 p.m – Bus returns to BHS
5:00 p.m – Thursday Jazz Rhythm Section Sectional
6:00 p.m – Thursday Jazz with clinician

Friday – 10/28 – NO FOOTBALL GAME

Monday – 10/31 – Halloween Parade
WE WILL BE OUTSIDE FOR REHEARSAL Monday
Students will need to be dressed in costume. A quick reminder: Costumes should not interfere with their ability to march or play.
Students who opt not to dress in costume should wear the black concert pants, Memorial Day orange polo shirt, and black shoes (no sneakers)
2:30 – Bus departs BHS for BJHS
5:30 – Busses pick us up at Hawthorne School
STUDENTS MAY BE DISMISSED FROM THE END OF A PARADE WITH A NOTE!

Notes of Congratulations
As festival results begin to come in, we have many CONGRATS to send out to the various students who have been accepted:

Congratulations to the 8 BHS students who will be representing us at the All New England Band Festival at Plymouth State University!!!! They will be heading to Plymouth on Sunday, November 20th and will perform a concert on Monday, November 21st at PSU with several other musicians from across New England. This is a WONDERFUL honor. I am so proud of them.
Josie Adolf – Bass Clarinet
Sophie Blair – Percussion
Ethan Boll – Clarinet
Niles Dorn – Alto Saxophone
Sean Erwin – French Horn
Rowan Horton – Flute
Anna Webster – Tuba
Nick White – Bassoon

Also, Congrats to the following students for being selected to the 2016-2017 Maine All State Jazz Festival! This is a pretty big deal as well as competition on each instrument is very tight. These musicians have distinguished themselves as some of the very best jazz musicians in the state:
Keegan Arnold – Bass player for the SSAA Choir
Sophie Blair – Vibes in the Jazz Band
Katie Bojarski – Trombone in the Jazz Band
Ethan Boll – Bass vocalist in the Mixed Jazz Choir
Erin Marc-Aurele – Trumpet in the Honors Jazz Band
Elliott Nagler – Trombone in the jazz band
Henry Raker – Lead Alto in the jazz band
Victoria Stevens – Alto vocalist in the Mixed Jazz Choir
Kyra Teboe – Pianist in the Honors Jazz Band
Anna Webster – Bass Trombone in the Honors Jazz Band

Exciting Opportunity!
Thanks to some very hard work and energy on behalf of one of our parents, Monday, November 14th, BHS will welcome Master Sargent Michael Johnston, trumpet player with the US Jazz Ambassadors. He will be spending the day with our music program offering masterclasses and sitting in with the various ensembles. This is a truly unique and exciting opportunity for our students! Mr. Johnston is a leader in the world of trumpet performance. We are very fortunate to host him for the day and are super excited to have him working with our students.

Master Sergeant Michael Johnston, trumpet, has served as jazz trumpet soloist with the Jazz Ambassadors since 2000 and Leader of the Jazz Ambassadors Dixieland Band since 2003. He served as a member of the Concert Band of The U.S. Army Field Band from 1991 until 2000. MSG Johnston won first place at the International Trumpet Guild’s Jazz Improvisation Competition in 1989 while earning his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of North Florida, graduating in 1991. He has performed with Clark Terry, Dizzy Gillespie, Nat Adderly, Louis Bellson, James Moody, Doc Severinsen, Della Reese, Harry Connick, Jr., Dianne Schuur, Natalie Cole, and the Count Basie Orchestra.
I believe that is all I have for this week. As always, thank you so much for supporting our students in the music program. We couldn’t have done it without you!!!!

Have a wonderful week.

~ Mike

Weekly Update – 10/17/16

Good morning all,

I hope this email finds you well.

I had several things for you this week that I hope you will find helpful in planning.

First, thank you all so much for making the fundraising efforts thus far such a huge success. The walking tacos have been a huge hit! We have at least two more upcoming football games that I will be emailing about. Thank you so much for all your help with this.

Calendar Updates:

Attached, please find the UPDATED version of the calendar. Please note the following:

1) All basketball games have  been included.  A quick note: if a basketball game is cancelled for any reason, we DO NOT play makeup games. 

2) May 10 – 12th, there is a “Jazz Residency” here at BHS. I will explain this better in one moment.

3) On Thursday, October 27th, the Thursday Night Jazz Ensemble will be performing for the Maine School Management Association. This is the largest gathering of school boards in the state with over 500 people planning to be in attendance. We will depart BHS at 11:00 for Augusta, perform, eat lunch, then return to BHS. The bus should be back by 3 p.m.

– Students should be dressed in performance attire. Reminder, for Jazz this means: Men – Black Suit, Solid tie, dress shoes and socks. For Ladies – All black.

4) Friday, October 28th there is NO home football Game! Due to the success (CONGRATS TO ALL OUR FOOTBALL PLAYERS AND CHEERLEADERS) of the team, they have a bye week.

5) On Friday, November 4th, there is a football game scheduled. Due to 80 + members of the music department auditioning for All State that night, the band WILL NOT be participating in the game.

Jazz Residency

BHS has been asked to host internationally known Jazz Saxophonist Dave Pietro for a three-day residency in May.  You can read more about Dave here: http://www.davepietro.com/ .  Dave is an internationally known clinician, performer, and teacher. He currently is on staff at NYU and tours throughout the globe. He is HIGHLY sought after as both a performer and a clinician. An organization known as the “Jazz Residency Initiative” has heard about the reputation of our jazz program and asked if we would be interested in having Dave come up for a three day program with our students. I jumped at the opportunity. Please note: There is a concert with our students Friday, May 12th at 7:00 p.m in Crooker. I will be updating you all as I hear more about what we are planning.  This is an INCREDIBLE opportunity for our kids. I am so amped for them to have the chance to play with and learn from an outstanding teacher.

This week:

Here is the schedule of events for this week:

– Tuesday

7:00 a.m – Morning Band

2:15 p.m – District 3 Help 

5:30 p.m – Trumpet sectional for Tuesday Jazz

6:00 p.m – Tuesday Night Jazz

– Thursday

7:00 a.m – Morning Band

5:00 p.m – Thursday Jazz Rhythm Section Sectional

5:30 p.m – Saxophone Sectional

6:00 p.m – Thursday Night Jazz 

Next Week:

– Monday 

– DISTRICT 3 Auditions

– Bus Departs BHS at 2:10 p.m.

– Students must have their permission slip and $8 returned THIS WEEK to us. Checks should be made out to BHS Music Department

– Students should be in shirt, tie, and dress shoes for the audition. Ladies should be dressed up. No jeans, leggings, shorts, etc should be worn.

– The bus should return by 8:15 p.m.

– Tuesday

– 7:00 a.m – morning band

– 5:30 p.m – Trombone Sectionals – Tuesday Jazz

– 6:00 p.m – Tuesday Jazz

– Wednesday

– 5:00 p.m – ALL WINDS for Thursday Night Jazz Sectional

– 6:00 p.m – Thursday Night Jazz 

– Thursday

– 11:00 a.m – Bus Departs for Maine School Management Association Performance at the Civic Center in Augusta

– 5:00 p.m – Rhythm Section Sectional – Thursday Jazz

– 6:00 p.m – Thursday Night Jazz 

Cool Alumni News

For those of you who remember Evan Murray, BHS Class of 2014, he had an amazing weekend at Umaine.

The Bangor Maine Papa John’s sponsors a “field goal challenge during the half-time of University of Maine home football games.  A contestant (chosen by random drawing at the game) is given the chance to try 3 field goals of  successfully greater distance: 15 yds, 25 yds, and 35 yds. Any missed field goal and the contest is over.  If the contestant makes the first field goal everyone at the game gets a 50% discount on their Papa John’s order. If s/he makes the second field goal, the contestant wins a $500 pizza party. If the contestant makes the 35 yd field goal, s/he wins $10,000 (which has never happened in the 6 years that they’ve held the contest).  Evan was selected as the contestant at yesterday’s game.  Watch below to see what happened!

http://www.foxbangor.com/local-sports-video-center

I think that is all I have for this week. I hope this has been helpful. As always, thank you so much for all you do to support our students. This is a busy couple of weeks. I hope you all have a WONDERFUL week!!!!

~ Mike

Jazz Improv Weekend

Good morning all,

I hope this email finds you well.

I wanted to pass along a super rad opportunity that I think is worthy of all our kids.

The University of Southern Maine hosts a “Jazz Improvisation” weekend where students come and learn the facets of improvising. It meets the skill level of ANY improviser from the brand new to the highly advanced.

Info can be found here: https://usm.maine.edu/music/jazzimprov

During this event students will have the opportunity to play jazz as well as attend a variety of clinics. Clinics will focus on issues such as, you guessed it, the art of jazz improvisation, as well as issues concerning the student’s own major instrument.  A great deal of time will be spent working on jazz improvisation while performing in a combo setting. Throughout the weekend, students will have ample time to work with the USM School of Music jazz faculty.  USM jazz faculty members are, Taylor O’Donnell, voice; Bill Street and Barry Saunders, saxophones; Chris Oberholtzer, trombone; Chris Klaxton, trumpet and piano; Gary Wittner, guitar; Bronek Suchanek, bass and Les Harris Jr., drums.

Each year they bring in a guest artist to feature on a concert. This year they will be bringing the featured soloist with the U.S. Army Blues, Graham Breedlove.  Today, Washington, D.C. based Graham Breedlove is critically acclaimed as being …one of the most exciting trumpet players on the planet! –ITG Journal.  Please check out his website for more information, the address is: http://www.grahambreedlove.com/

There is a fee associated with this BUT if your student is interested, please let me know and we can work on a scholarship for them. I’d love to see as many of our students attend as possible.

If you have any questions, please let me know. 

~ Mike

Weekly Update – 10/4/16

Dear parents,

Happy Tuesday! I hope this email finds you all well and enjoying a wonderful start to the school year.  It has been an absolutely UNBELIEVABLE start for the music program! All 4 large ensembles have been working tirelessly on their various music and are looking forward to sharing their work with you at the first game on October 7th!

I wanted to be in touch about some very important news and information for this year.  

First, there is a Music Boosters Meeting tomorrow, Wednesday October 5th, at 6:30 p.m. In the band room. It will be dealing primarily with our largest fundraiser of the year, the Silent Auction. There is still a lot of help needed so we would appreciate your time very much!

Next, as you know, the band will be at the Football game this Friday! At each home game, the band sells “Walking Tacos” (or “Tacos in a bag”) to help the music department.  We are in need of some easy volunteering. The Sign Up Genius for what we need is here: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/805084babad29aa8-outdoor

Please take a moment to see if you can help.  

Next, as many of you know, this is slated to be a “Music Department Trip Year”. While we are still looking at the exact location, we thought it would be prudent to talk about cost and fundraising. There will be a separate meeting for all parents interested in having their son or daughter attend the trip but it makes sense to begin the talk of fundraising now.

In the past, the music boosters has contributed more than $20,000 toward student expenses on the trip. Because of this contribution, we were able to bring the cost of the trip down to $675 per student.

While we are working on finding exact pricing for you, we wanted to “get the ball rolling” on fundraising.  While we know not every kid will fundraise, we know that a majority of students will need to benefit from the financial assistance that the boosters provides.

We are asking that families help in as many ways as possible:

Ways in which you can you help:

  1. Attend the upcoming music boosters meeting to volunteer for needed jobs.
    • Wednesday, October 5th – 6:30 p.m. – Music Room
    • Wednesday, November 2nd – 6:30 p.m – Music Room
    • Wednesday, November 30th – 6:30 p.m. – Music Room 
  2. If you or someone you know is willing to donate either goods or services to the auction, please reach out and let me know in what ways you are able to contribute.
  3. Encourage your son or daughter to volunteer contacting local businesses that need to be contacted. Mr. Scarpone and Mrs. Albert can tell them which businesses to contact and provide a script.

As always, if you have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. Details about the trip will be made public as soon as we have school board approval and all decisions made. All we do know is that we are looking at April Vacation to minimize impact on curricular time.

Thank you so much for all you do to support our kids! I hope you have a wonderful week. As always, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

~ Mike