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Concert Band is the mid-level band at St. David. Comprised of students mostly in their second and third years of music study, students in the concert band review concepts learned in Beginning Band and are introduced to more advanced concepts necessary for performance. Students in the concert band develop more musical independence and advanced ensemble skills, and emphasis shifts from learning rhythm and notation to musical style. The concert band performs two concerts per year - a Christmas concert in December and a spring concert in May.

Audio Links

Christmas Concert Music

https://www.jwpepper.com/Christmas-Mash-Up/10368053.item#/  (Christmas Mash-Up)

https://www.jwpepper.com/Frosty-the-Snowman/2700081.item#/ (Frosty the Snowman)

https://www.jwpepper.com/First-Rockin%27-Christmas/2345247.item#.WZoKka2ZO1s (First Rockin' Christmas)

Concert Band Curriculum

Timing

  • The ability to establish a pulse and stick to it
  • Various exercises to establish an inherent sense of keeping time

Articulations

  • Staccato
  • Marcato
  • Tenuto
  • Legato
  • Different types of accents
  • Advanced slur patterns
  • Syncopation
  • Introduction to swing

Range

  • Flute: Low C to high G
  • Clarinet: Low E to high C
  • Saxophone: Low B-flat to high F
  • Trumpet: Low A to high C
  • Trombone: Low F to high F
  • Baritone: Low F to high F

Tone Production

  • Breathing exercises
  • Listening to reference recordings to develop a personal sound 
  • Use of warm air
  • Playing at soft volumes with supported air

Tuning

  • Proper use of the tuner
  • Elements that affect pitch (reed strength, temperature, different volumes of playing, etc.)
  • Develop listening as opposed to relying on the tuner

Technique

  • More advanced articulation variations and exercises
  • Crescendo/decrescendo exercises
  • Controlling pitch on dynamic changes
  • Major scales: concert B-flat, concert E-flat, concert A-flat, concert D-flat, concert F, and concert C tongued in eighth notes at quarter note = 100 (both ascending/descending and in thirds) by the end of the year
  • One octave B-flat chromatic scale (tongued in eighth notes at quarter note = 100) by the end of the year
  • Sight-reading ability to grade two

Theory

  • Style
  • Form
  • Historical/cultural background
  • Key signatures (both major and minor)
  • Circle of fifths/fourths
  • Difference between concert pitch and specific instrument pitch

Balance and Blend

  • Blending and matching tone to surrounding musicians, within sections, and within the entire band
  • Train ears to hear different sounds within the band (melody, harmony, bass line, moving lines, etc.)
  • Pyramid balance
  • Bringing out lower parts within sections
  • Matching everything: note lengths, articulations, tone, pitch, etc.
  • Not sticking out of the ensemble

Other Concepts

  • Phrasing (four-measure phrasing, musical contour)
  • Time signatures: 4/4, 3/4, 2/4, common time, cut time, and 6/8
  • Continued sight-reading procedures and practice
Documents