Beginning Band Information Page
††††††††† Welcome to those of you who are considering membership in the Dutchtown Middle School Band. We hope this will be the beginning of a long and successful association with music, both here and in high school. This page has information on what you will need for beginning band for the first year, and what you can expect from band both this year and in the future.†
††††††††† If you are a 5th grade
student at either
††††††††† Band instrument testing will be done at both primary schools by the end of the first week in May. At this time you should start making the decision of what instrument to play in the band. We will be making a recommendation to each child that is interested in band as regards what instrument to play.† Parents will be getting a letter to this effect soon after testing takes place.
You do not need to buy a band instrument at this time, and I do not recommend that you do so as yet.† We will be having a meeting to discuss what instrument to purchase and how to go about this before school starts in August.†
When it does become time to purchase an instrument, you should realize
that this is a very important decision and that you should consider price as
only one element in the equation.† Most
times the least expensive instrument available is not the most cost
effective.† I strongly recommend buying
or renting a first line US or Japanese made band
instrument.†† I suggest that most
students should rent an instrument at first; in order to make sure that the
instrument that we have chosen will be appropriate for the student.
Occasionally, we have to change a child's instrument in the early months of
band.† Also, some students will switch
to a school owned instrument, such as French Horn or Tuba early in the first
year of band. Most music stores have a rental program for beginning band
students. My personal recommendation is Zeagler Music in
Flute. Gemienhardt 22SP. Also acceptable are Armstrong, Artley, Selmer and Yamaha.
Clarinet.†† Selmer 1401.† Also acceptable are Vito, Leblanc, Buffett, Yamaha, Artley, and Armstrong.
Saxophone.† Yamaha YAS-23.† This is by FAR the best Alto Sax for beginning band students, and I am reluctant to even mention other brands.
Trumpet. Yamaha YTR-2320. Also acceptable are
Bach TB-300.† Also acceptable
Students will need to purchase a Bell Kit.† This will include a practice set of bells
and a snare drum practice pad with sticks for each.† CB, Ludwig, or
Once you have an
instrument, the next thing is making sure you have the supplies you will
need.† When you buy a new instrument
most of this will be included.† For the
following listed instruments, I will give the supplies needed. Many items
such as reeds and oils will need to be replenished during the year.† I sell limited quantities of some of these
items for emergencies, but normally you should purchase these things at a
music store. Most items will be available at Zeagler
Please make sure you have the following supplies at all times.
Flute.† A Silver polish cloth or soft cotton cloth.† A cleaning rod.
Clarinets.† At least 4 working reeds at all times.† You will need a reedguard for 4 reeds.
Reeds should be Rico 2 Ĺ strength.† A cleaning swab.† Mouthpiece cap.
Saxophones. At least 4 working reeds at all times.† You will need a reedguard for 4 reeds.† Reeds should be Rico 2 Ĺ strength.† A cleaning swab.† Mouthpiece cap and end plug.† Neck Strap.
Trumpets, French Horns, Baritones and Tubas.† One bottle of valve oil.† A container of Tuning slide grease ( I find the best is Selmer Tuning slide grease.) A soft cloth to wipe fingerprints.
Trombones.† One container of Slide Cream or Slide Oil.† Slide Cream is preferable and works better.† It is also more economical.† If you are using slide cream, you will need a water spray bottle ( like a hair spray mist bottle.)† Tuning slide grease.
Percussion.† A pair of snare drum sticks size 2B or SD1.† A pair of M-4 Bell mallets or equivalent.
Home Practice.† Students should practice a minimum of 30 minutes for 5 days each week.† Practice charts will be signed and returned in beginning band as outlined in the band handbook.
Performances and rehearsals.† Beginning band members will have 2 required performances the first year. They are the Christmas Concert and the Spring Concert.† The beginning band will not generally have after school practice.† It may be necessary to have one after school rehearsal prior to each of the two concerts.† Once a student is in the 7th grade and up, you can expect an after school rehearsal once a week.
Private Lessons.† Private instruction is recommended.† There will be an optional private lesson program set up after school. More information on this will be coming.† The Bandroom is usually open after school till 4:30 if students are interested in coming to get extra help.† See Mr. Bresowar to make sure that it is ok to come that day.
Students will make amazing progress with a little support and encouragement.† All beginning students reach a point where the newness has worn off and they get a bit tired of band.† This will be the time for a little encouragement.† Please contact me if there are any problems or questions.† We need to work together to have the best band possible.
Band is a great experience.† There are many benefits and rewards for good band members and good musicians.† I look forward to working with your children this year and in years to come.
Director of Bands