STARTUP CLINICS FOR NEW MUSICIANS IS THIS WEEK!
I am very excited to have our Startup Clinics happen this week for our Grade 7s and other new musicians this coming Friday, October 1! Here is what to expect for these clinics ...
Students MUST have working instruments for friday
While this should seem obvious, and easily achieved for the vast majority of you, what might not be as obvious is that students will need reeds and their instrument care kits. Without those, some of the features of the clinics will be lost.
Tuba players will have their at-school tubas available for use, so will only need to remember their tuba mouthpieces.
New Alto Saxophone Players should also have their saxophones there that day.
Grade 9-12 Students Are Our Mentors
Our students will be working directly with select students in Grades 9 through 12 to learn the following skills;
When Is This All Happening, and How Much Does It Cost?
It's free, and it's happening on Friday, October 1, 2021 during the school day. There is no after-school commitment for this, and students will still be catching the busses at the end of the day.
Grade 7 (and 9) students will be missing all their other classes that day in addition to having their regularly scheduled band class. Grade 8 new musicians will be missing all their other classes that day.
In other words, it runs from 8:40 AM to 12:20 PM. By the end of the day, new students will be able to play a large portion of their first song, and will have created a relationship with an older musician who they can rely on for extra support throughout the year.
Students will need practice space at home
Especially after these startup clinics, students will need safe practice space at home. Students will be making unusual, sometimes challenging sounds on their instruments. This is normal, and needs to be encouraged on their path to success. Please help them have space and time without distraction for great practicing at home.
Students, don't forget to log your practice minutes in the Discord!
If you have any questions about any of these things, please feel free to open a #windyj-ticket in the Discord!
Instruments have arriveD!
Many of your instruments arrived today! So tomorrow we will deliver each of these instruments to you. Mr. Windsor is here to give you some tips.
Don't pack more than you can handle tomorrow
Students are going to be likely to want to carry their instruments home, or take them on the bus. They are of course encouraged to do so (unless they have tubas). But plan for it.
what if my instrument didn't arrive?
Then you didn't get your order completed in time. That's okay. Mr. Windsor is going into the city on Saturday.
If your student doesn't get their instrument on Friday morning, please call Long & McQuade when your student gets home.
Now That you have your instruments, what about jazz?
Students are encouraged to join the Jazz Band (sometimes called a Stage Band). Trumpet and trombone players are normal instruments in such a group, and flute players and clarinet players can learn saxophone as a secondary instrument in Jazz Band. NDC has these saxophones available for a very reduced rental cost of only $50 for the whole year. Aside from having the right instrument, there is no cost to being in Jazz Band.
We play rock, swing and latin music. Last year we played "Gimme Some Lovin'", "Everybody Have Fun Tonight", and "In the Mood" as examples. We'd love to have more Grade 7s join our group!
The Woodshedders, NDC's Jazz Band, rehearses on Wednesdays after school until 4:45 PM. If your students are also involved in after-school sports, we make arrangements so that they can keep both commitments.
If your student is interested in joining, please ask them to contact me on the Discord, or just bug me in class about it tomorrow!
When PowerSchool Fails, Discord Can Help
With Instruments come COncerts
Now that instruments are here, we'll be teaming up Grade 7s with older students to help them learn the basics. The only logical next step after that is for them to show you, the families, what they can do! More announcements about that will be coming soon.
Thank you For Your Support of Your StudentS!
We can't wait to start making music, thanks entirely to your support! God bless!
You are receiving this message because you now have new fees attached to your SchoolCashOnline account based on orders you placed. This will include rentals for secondary instruments for Stage Band, NDC Music Jackets, Panorama T-Shirts, and/or 2020/2021 Concert Season DVDs.
Please arrange for payment of these orders as soon as possible. I can only release what you have purchased to you once payment has been submitted.
Thank you very much!
Joel Windsor, MME, RMT
Music Specialist, Notre Dame Collegiate
If You Couldn't Attend, or Need A Reminder of the content, Here Is The Info You Need!
If you are looking to rent a flute, clarinet, trumpet or trombone, or a violin or viola, or an alto or tenor saxophone, we recommend you rent from Long & McQuade. To do so, here is how.
If you want to purchase an instrument, that is best done in person. If you already have access to an instrument (from a sibling, cousin, or friend), you obviously don't need to rent one!
But what about larger instruments?
If you are looking to rent a bass clarinet, tuba, baritone saxophone or cello, we recommend you rent from Notre Dame Collegiate. Here is the steps to do so.
NEW ANNOUNCEMENT - Students Begin Playing next week
I originally planned to have instruments in students' hands so that we could play beginning Monday. While that work for Grades 8-12, Grade 7s unfortunately will need to wait for a bit to get theirs. Grade 7s, order your instruments now so we can play sooner!
If you have questions ...
You can ask questions directly in the NDC Music Discord in the #windyj-tickets channel, or you can also email Mr. Windsor, and he will answer as best as he can!
Welcome all Music Families to the 2021-2022 Season!
First, let me thank you for supporting your student in music education. We learned last year how music came to be among the most important things for our youth and their well-being. We're pleased to develop that even further this year.
Today's blog post includes information about ordering instruments, jackets, shirts and DVDs, as well as information about after school music ensembles. There is also information about how we will be doing the music program different than last year with Discord, Breezin' Thru and List A/B/C pieces, and how to support your students' musical learning. Finally, there is also information about band trips and what to expect with them, as well as our fundraising organization the High River Catholic Fine Arts Parents Association (HRCFAPA) and their AGM. There is a ton of information, so grab a coffee and relax as you read!
Instrument Rentals - September 9, 2021
Instrument Rental Night includes Long & McQuade and Notre Dame Collegiate instrument rentals, and will be occurring by ZOOM at 6:30 PM on Thursday, September 9, 2021. Use the link below to join.
Students are expected to have their instruments in their possession by Monday, September 13, 2021. That will be the first day we are playing instruments.
If you don't know what instrument you will be playing yet, you might be in Grade 7, or you might be new to the school. Every new musician has had time with an instrument try-out kit, and now just needs to complete the instrument selection form. We use that information to help you decide what instrument is right for you.
Discord Music Community - The Main Resource for Music
Over the past years I have tried out a few systems that were to help students be successful in their musical skill development. They all cost a fortune, and none of them worked.
Last year I began to use Discord, which is an invite-only online community that I customized to provide all the features I was looking for; the ability for students to engage in music by listening, playing, playing along with, and recording their development. In the end the Discord has grown into an extension of the close-knit NDC Music Community. We were even able to use Discord for the same features we got with ZOOM and Google Meets. It was a perfect pandemic solution.
This year we continue with this tool, and invite parents to join in.
Again, Discord is invite-only, meaning I have to send you an invitation to get in. I also moderate the system, so there are no distractions like Nigerian Princes or strange Snapchat Filters that get in the way. People who join have to follow a code of conduct, which is really easy to follow and ensures the safety of the online space.
For students, every musical resource we will be learning with is already there including theory resources, musical recordings, sheet music, and advancement opportunities. Students can send me "support tickets" to get a one-on-one question answered, and it can't get lost in a sea of emails, and it helps me make sure I meet your students' needs fully and completely.
For parents, you have access to all my announcements (including musical volunteer opportunities), can ask me individual questions whenever you think about it, can sign up for volunteer and chaperone duties, and can even hang out in a "voice channel" that operates exactly as ZOOM does. It is a far better communication tool than emails and Facebook (although I won't be giving those up so I still recommend bookmarking this page and liking the Facebook Page).
Still Breezin' Thru Theory
We continue to use Breezin' Thru Theory as our main resource for learning the written language of music. Students are expected to complete at least three chapters this year (only more if they are in multiple ensembles, or didn't complete something in previous years). Breezin' Thru Theory now allows students to log in using the Redeemer Google ID, making the learning process even smoother than before.
Students know exactly which Breezin' Thru chapters have been assigned to them as they appear as separate text channels in Discord.
List A, B and C Pieces are Back, and Supported in Discord
All students in all grade levels will be selecting two solo pieces to practice their skills. They will choose pieces from a list of resources Mr. Windsor has available, most of them Royal Conservatory of Music Repertoire resources.
A List A piece is usually an up-beat "classical" piece, helping students to develop their understanding of rhythm and style. A List B piece is usually a much more melodic, helping students develop their tone and musicality. A List C piece is usually a modern piece arranged by Mr. Windsor for the students, and can be pop, rock, musical theatre, or soundtrack music (as examples).
Students select 2 of these three options. Their music becomes available in the Discord, where they can record their practice logs and record themselves performing their music. These recordings become part of their Skills and Techniques mark.
Students can also opt to enter their solos in Festivals, like the Highwood Lions Music Festival. Doing so opens doors to scholarships and awards.
If you have questions, jump into the Discord server and open a #windyj-ticket.
How to Support Your Students' Musical Learning
After School Music - Stage Band, Steel Pans, Strings
We have many other optional opportunities for students to get involved in music-making. Students can sign up for these ensembles Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at lunch in the music room, or by joining the ensembles on Discord.
The Woodshedders are our Stage or Jazz Band, playing rock, swing, and latin music. Students often play "secondary" instruments in this group, making it a perfect opportunity to learn a second instrument including saxophone, trombone, trumpet, piano, bass guitar, or drumset. Participation in Concert Band is a prerequisite for this class. They meet on Wednesdays after school beginning September 15, 2021.
Panorama is our Steel Pan Ensemble, playing Caribbean, popular, and rock music. There is no prerequisite for this group, and they rehearse on Wednesday evenings beginning September 8, 2021.
St. Cecilia Strings is our string ensemble, giving students an opportunity to learn violin, viola or cello. There is also no prerequisite for this ensemble, and they rehearse on Tuesdays after school beginning September 14, 2021.
NDC Music Jackets and Panorama Shirts
With a music program of over 120 students and an inventory of only 95 NDC Music Jackets, we have to order more! This is also an opportunity for you to order your own, complete with your name embroidered on it. Orders must be in by September 15, and jackets will cost $60.00 with the name embroidered on it.
Panorama also has an opportunity to order Panorama T-Shirts, which can be used on hot-weather days as our uniform instead. Again, orders must be in by September 15, and the t-shirts will cost $30, laid out as shown.
DVDs of the 2020-2021 NDC Music Concert Season
With all performances from the 2020-2021 School Year being conducted online, we have videos that we can keep for years to come. To get your own memento of the craziest year of musical learning ever, you can order your own DVD here. DVDs are sold at cost ($5.00 each), and no profit is made from these sales.
Band Trips and What To Expect
First, I must be clear that all band trips are subject entirely to the directions of the Chief Medical Officer of Health's guidelines and restrictions, and subsequently any guidelines or restrictions stipulated by the Christ The Redeemer Catholic School Division and our school administrators. At the time of this posting, masks are required on busses, and we would follow that expectation even on a charter coach to whatever destination we go to. Nonetheless, at the time of this posting, in-province field trips and excursions are acceptable extra-curricular activities, and as such we are moving forward with our band trip plans.
Edmonton Cantando Festival - April 11 to 13, 2022
Grade 8 Concert Band, Grade 9 Concert Band, The Woodshedders and Panorama
This band trip has been approved, and is moving forward. The current outline of this plan is a departure after noon on Sunday, April 11, an evening concert that night, hotel accommodations with breakfasts included, festival performances in the Winspear Theatre and the Yardbird Suite on Monday, April 12, workshops on Tuesday, April 13, and downtime at West Edmonton Mall. We will be looking for 6 to 8 chaperones for this trip. Final fees will be determine prior to November, however we are suggesting families budget a maximum of $200.00 per student until all fundraising contributions have been determined.
Airdrie Festival and Studio Bell - Dates TBA in March 2022
Grade 7 Concert Band
This is a perennial trip that has been approved and is moving forward. It introduces Grade 7 students to music festivals and school field trips. It is an overnight trip where students stay in the Super 8 Motel in Airdrie, enjoy downtime at the Genesis Place swimming pool, perform in the Airdrie Rotary Festival of the Performing Arts including a workshops with the adjudicator, and explore Studio Bell, all while arriving back at the school on the second day in time to catch the school busses. Anticipated cost of this trip, which also includes breakfast and accommodations, is $100.00 per student, however this fee cannot be confirmed until Airdrie's Festival sets their dates.
U of L Students For a Week - Dates TBA in April or May 2022
Senior Concert Band
This band trip has been approved in concept, but there are many particulars that are not yet fully planned. The intention is to have students live 4 days and 3 nights as if they are studying music at the University of Lethbridge. This trip will not only introduce them to what being in the music faculty might be like, but what post-secondary life in general will feel like, thereby helping them to be better prepared for life after high school while also learning more about music. Details will be announced as soon as they have been solidified.
Strings and Solos At Festival - Dates and Locations TBA
St. Cecilia String Ensemble, Any Solo Performers
This trip is contingent upon a number of factors, including what adjudicators each of the nearby festivals hire (Mr. Windsor is very particular about which adjudicators work with NDC music students). Once Highwood Lions Music Festival, Lethbridge & District Music and Speech Arts Festival, and Airdrie Rotary Festival of the Performing Arts announces their adjudicators and festival dates, we will be identifying further details about the trip these students will take to learn more about music.
Marching Band - At the Little Britches Parade in May 2022
Mandatory for Grade 7 Concert Band, Voluntary for all other students
The NDC Marching Band is one of High River's favourite parts of the Little Britches Parade, and we are excited to come back this season. Students in Grade 7 begin marching in March of 2022, and will be joined by dozens of other students who love marching band from other grades to participate in the parade. More details will come, but there is no cost to this activity, though it happens on the May Long Weekend.
Fundraising & the High River Catholic Fine Arts Parents
Band trips come at a cost, but those costs can be reduced for everyone with your support of the fundraising efforts of the High River Catholic Fine Arts Parents Association, or HRCFAPA. Many things in the music program don't happen without parent support. If you have a student in a music program, you are automatically a member, and can get involved during their ZOOM AGM at 7:00 PM on Thursday, September 9, 2021. You can also like their Facebook Page to keep up-to-date about their fundraisers.
Thank You For Your Support of Music Education
In the pandemic year we learned how critical music is to well-being and identity formation of every student. That you support your student in music education is to be commended, as you are making the conscious decision to help your students fully realize their complete humanness, and develop into the remarkable individuals they were always meant to be.
I am so blessed to work with your students, and I can't wait for this incredible music year!
Joel Windsor, MME, RMT
Music Education Specialist, Notre Dame Collegiate
Welcome to Band, Grade 7 Families!
This year is going to be a great, unique musical adventure, and I'm looking forward to what we are able to produce together. By the end of this morning I will have had a chance to meet each of your students, and we will have begun the process of making music!
Getting Your Instruments - Rentals
Instrument Mouthpiece Try-Out Kits - Many of your students have already been given a mouthpiece try-out kit. If your child has one, they will need to finish with it today, and return them to Mr. Windsor on Friday, September 3, 2021. At that time I will be able to disinfect them and pass them to another student so that they too can determine what instrument it is they want to play.
Instrument Selection Forms - Once your student has tried out the mouthpiece kits, it's time for them to make a selection of their favourite choices of instruments. The deadline for this form is Monday, September 6, 2021.
Instrument Rental Night is Online - By Thursday, September 9, your students will know what instrument they are playing this year, so now all you need to do is get the instrument for them. We have made it easy to do so.
Long & McQuade is our main partner for providing instruments to students, and our representative will be joining us for a ZOOM Instrument Rental Night Thursday, September 9, 2021 at 6:30 PM. If your student is renting a flute, clarinet, trumpet or trombone, you will find the best value at Long & McQuade. If your student is playing tuba, the best value is to rent from Notre Dame Collegiate, where your rental includes two tubas (one at school and one at home so transportation isn't an issue) at a very reduced cost. If your student is playing bass clarinet or baritone, both Long & McQuade and Notre Dame Collegiate are valid considerations.
Fine Arts Parents Meeting - September 9, 2021 at 7:00 PM
The High River Catholic Fine Arts Parents Association has their Annual General Meeting via ZOOM on September 9, 2021 at 7:00 PM. This meeting will not be recorded, but provides you with an amazing opportunity to hear about the Fine Arts programs directly from the teachers themselves, as well as how you can support them easily through some of our amazing fundraisers.
The Fine Arts Parents have helped out with our band trips in the past, helping to make it affordable for everyone. If you want to join in that support, please join the HRCFAPA Meeting immediately after instrument rental night.
Watch your Email Tomorrow for a Full Run Down of the Entire Music Program Here at NDC! Thank you for Joining us in this wonderful music-making experience!
Mr. Windsor will provide you with some interesting hints, help, advice, and resources on this page.