Bison Bands Fall Newsletter
Band Family Updates
Dear Parents, Guardians, Friends, and Families:
I hope this newsletter finds you happy, healthy, and SANE!
In case you were unaware, November is National Gratitude Month. Parents and guardians, I wanted to take a moment to share with how much I appreciate your continued support. The instruments, the lessons, carpool, reeds, sticks, etc... You do so much for your children, and I am confident that it seems underappreciated and overlooked, but I assure you it is not.
Students, I am so grateful for your efforts, your spirit, and your musicianship; but more importantly, I am most grateful and impressed with your perseverance. This situation is not what you signed up for, and the fact that you come to class or rehearsal every time ready to learn and grow is a testament to your grit. This will pay you dividends of great success long into your future.
While this fall has not been typical, we feel that the activities, events, projects, and lessons have continued to provide the best possible music education during remote learning. From Hero Projects to Friday Family Performances, we hope that students have been able to find the musical blessings that exist in these difficult times.
At some point, this will end, and we will return to normal and we will once again make music in the classroom and on the stage or field together. We will be able to look each other in the eye and show the appreciation for the spirit, enthusiasm, and grit we all deserve. Until then, please let this message serve as my personal, "Thank you" and acknowledgement of our National Month of Gratitude.
Please read this entire newsletter as there is some great news about what our students have been doing. Most importantly, please be sure to check out the Bandarama Showcase video that has long been in the making.
ILMEA District 1 Honor Band
Every fall, over 2000 music students from across Chicagoland prepare a rigorous audition for the esteemed Illinois Music Education Association honor ensembles and festivals. After the audition, only the best musicians are chosen to participate in the district festival. This district festival also may qualify them for participation at the state level.
On Saturday, November 21, Anna Micor represented Fenton at the ILMEA District 1 Honor Band. Anna qualified on both flute and piccolo; a feat rarely experienced! Anna was also named first chair piccolo for the entire District 1 band auditions! Congratulations Anna!
Thank you goes out to the Bensenville Arts Council for supporting our guest artists for the Boot Camp!
Private Lesson Scholarships
Bison Chamber Band
Be sure to check out the video later in this newsletter to hear and see some of the small ensembles that students created this fall!
John Bruce Yeh visits Concert Band rehearsal
Marching Bison Band
Unfortunately, we weren't able to march for any performances this year, but we were able to meet in person outside at Fenton and maintain a socially distant rehearsal! You can see some images below of that experience.
Be sure to check out the video later in this newsletter to hear and see some of the Marching Bison Band from the season.
Virtual Band Classes & Practicing
In order to keep our student musicians in tip top shape, there are a few things that need to happen at home while we are in virtual learning.
One of these is that all students should be practicing their music for 20 minutes five times a week outside of class. Normally, students would get a lot of this practice time in during class; however, due to our remote situation, this is not possible. Parents and guardians, you can help encourage your child to do this by asking them to play for you from time to time. They have holiday music that would brighten up anyone's home. Everyone should be noticing some music playing in the home.
Additionally, even though we are at home, we please ask that all students refrain from eating, drinking, or chewing gum during band class or instrumental music practice. Musical instruments do not respond well to the residues of food, drink, or gum. Students, remember that "nacho cheese is the enemy." :)
Thank you for your support!
Bandarama Showcase Video
In this video, you will hear the members of the Bison Chamber Band perform their small ensembles, meet our band student leadership team, meet our Marching Bison Band seniors, and see the Marching Bison Band from their in-person rehearsals.
If the video doesn't work for some reason, please click here for a Youtube version. This video will be available for a month on Youtube.
Be on the lookout in late December for another showcase of our students and the work they've been doing with their holiday music.
Please feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or concerns. I hope you and your family have a relaxing, restful, safe, and grateful Thanksgiving.