Thursday, May 23, 2019

Wrapping It Up...

Dear Parents,

The spring trips and spring concert are behind us, and what a performance our bands had! We are now wrapping up the school year with final playing tests, Advanced Band auditions, and various uniform/instrument check-ins.

ADVANCED and JAZZ BAND SPRING TRIP
The 2019 Spring Trip took place last weekend and students had the time of their lives. Advanced Band performed in California Adventure on Thursday, and Jazz Band performed in the park on Saturday. Both bands performed with a local middle school where I first learned how to play saxophone as a 4th grader. We also had a clinic with Dr. Betancourt, the director of bands at Cerritos College. Along with making amazing music, students had a beach party, pool party, and 2 days in the theme parks to make memories that will last a lifetime.  A special thank you to all chaperones who helped make this trip so successful!  I uploaded pictures from this trip at the bottom of this post.  I also have live streams of both group's performances on our Facebook page: Carson Middle School Bands.

SPRING CONCERT
On Tuesday, all bands participated in their final concert of the school year. I am proud of all the students and all the groups for their fantastic performance. If you were unable to attend, a recording of this entire performance is also on the CMS Bands Facebook page. I am proud of all the musical accomplishments of our students this year, and the spring concert celebrated everything that took place, from successful fundraisers, to successful festivals, and everything in between.

FINAL PLAYING TEST
On Wednesday, I assigned a final playing test to all students in all classes. The link to this assignment with all the directions is at the top of this page. This will also be your student's final week of official citizenship grades.  I will begin finalizing grades next week, and will leave just 1 grade left for some groups: 8th grade promotion.

8TH GRADE PROMOTION PERFORMANCE
On June 5, 6th and 7th grade students from Intermediate and Advanced Band will perform for the 8th grade promotion.  This is mandatory for students in those bands and optional for all others. In addition, 8th grade students in Advanced Band will set up their instruments before lining up for promotion. During the ceremony, they will be invited to go to their instruments to perform 1 final song with the band.  Call time will be 12:30 PM in the band room. The ceremony begins at 1 PM and the students will be dismissed once all instruments and borrowed uniform items have been returned.

UNIFORM RETURNS
Advanced, Intermediate, and Jazz Band students will need to clean and return all machine washable uniform parts by Monday, June 3.  Keep all washed items hung up in the garment bag separate from the dry clean only items.

INSTRUMENT RETURNS
All students must return their school-owned instruments on Wednesday, June 5 unless they are participating in Summer Pops or Jazz Camps.

SUMMER POPS CAMP
Is your student wishing for more band after the school year is over? Wouldn't it be great to only have band each day and not have to balance it out with 6 other classes?  Well, you're in luck. I'm pleased to announce the inaugural Capital City Summer Pops! This ensemble will be put on by the Capital City Community Band and conducted by Mr. Jacques. Students will learn fun movie themes, marches, and pop selections. Rehearsals will be June 11-14 and 18-21 from 10:30 AM-12:00 PM each day, with a concert on the afternoon of Sunday, June 23. This camp is open to anyone who has been a member of their school's band program. For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

SUMMER JAZZ CAMP
Are you also interested in a summer jazz band opportunity? Well, don't feel left out! The 5th annual Jazz Camp is also on June 11-14 and 18-21, and meets from 8:30-10:00 AM each day. Jazz Camp students must have at least 1 year of playing experience on their current instrument. No prior jazz band experience is necessary.  Students will also have the opportunity to be in both Jazz Camp and the Summer Pops bands.  For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

Again, congratulations to all groups on fantastic festival performances, trips, and of course, the spring concert!  Thank you for helping me close up shop for the summer.  Enjoy the pictures from the spring trip!














-Mr. Jacques-

Monday, May 20, 2019

The final events...

Dear Parents,

What a year it has been!  What started with record enrollment has become a huge year with very successful students.  We will celebrate all their successes at our annual spring concert, which is so big this year that we're holding it in multiple parts. Read below for more information.

SPRING CONCERT

Our CMS Band spring concert will be on Tuesday, May 21 in the CMS Cafeteria.  Attendance is mandatory for all groups.  New this year: we will have 4 mini-concerts.  Students are required to attend their portion of the concert and may stay for any other portion that they would like.  Here are the performance details:

5:30 – Call time for Beginning Band and Concert Band in band room
5:45 - Beginning Band and Concert Band take stage
6:00 – Part 1: Beginning Band and Concert Band
6:00 – Call time for Intermediate Band in audience
6:25 - Percussion Ensemble, Intermediate Band takes stage
6:30 – Part 2: Intermediate Band
6:30 – Call time for Jazz Band in audience
6:55 - Clarinet Choir, Jazz Band takes stage
7:00 – Part 3: Jazz Band
7:00 – Call time for Advanced Band in audience
7:25 - Advanced Band takes stage
7:30 – Part 4: Advanced Band

8:15 – Approx. end of concerts. Please help clean up cafeteria before going home to celebrate!

Students will receive full credit for being in their correct concert dress, showing up on time, being prepared, and having professional performance and audience etiquette. We will also be celebrating the successes of all our students at each concert by presenting awards. 

FINAL GRADE NEWS
Students will have until May 30 to make up any tests or complete their final. This year's final will be posted on Google Classroom by Wednesday morning, and it will be due at the end of the day on Thursday, May 30. With the exception of the 8th grade promotion performance, this will be your student's last grade. Students auditioning for Advanced Band or Jazz Band must complete it as a video in order to be considered. 

8th GRADE PROMOTION
Band students who are not graduating will participate in 8th grade promotion on June 5 at 1:00 PM. This event is mandatory for all 6th and 7th grade band members. Call time will be immediately after school in their blue band polos and black dress pants. Students will be dismissed as soon as everything has been returned to the band room and any school instruments are turned in.

SUMMER POPS CAMP
Is your student wishing for more band after the school year is over? Wouldn't it be great to only have band each day and not have to balance it out with 6 other classes?  Well, you're in luck. I'm pleased to announce the inaugural Capital City Summer Pops! This ensemble will be put on by the Capital City Community Band and conducted by Mr. Jacques. Students will learn fun movie themes, marches, and pop selections. Rehearsals will be June 11-14 and 18-21 from 10:30 AM-12:00 PM each day, with a concert on the afternoon of Sunday, June 23. This camp is open to anyone who has been a member of their school's band program. For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

SUMMER JAZZ CAMP
Are you also interested in a summer jazz band opportunity? Well, don't feel left out! The 5th annual Jazz Camp is also on June 11-14 and 18-21, and meets from 8:30-10:00 AM each day. Jazz Camp students must have at least 1 year of playing experience on their current instrument. No prior jazz band experience is necessary.  Students will also have the opportunity to be in both Jazz Camp and the Summer Pops bands.  For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

That's it for now. See you all on Tuesday evening.

-Mr. Jacques-

Thursday, May 2, 2019

The Final Festivals

Dear Parents,

We just completed our final run of festivals, and what a rewarding few days it has been!
  • Last Friday, the Jazz Band participated in the Reno Jazz Festival, and earned straight "Excellent" ratings, as well as placing 9th in the middle school band division! After beginning to attend this jazz festival 5 years ago, this is the first time we have placed in the top 10.  Congratulations!
  • Last Tuesday, the Beginning Band and Concert Band classes combined and performed their first festival in Fernley, earning straight "Superior" ratings! What a way to start their lives in band.
  • Last Wednesday, the Jazz Band performed at the Northern Zone Jazz Festival.  This festival was a showcase of area bands and was not judged. 
I also want to give a special "thank you" to all the chaperones who attended and helped support these trips. If you were unable to attend, I have recordings on our "Carson Middle School Bands" Facebook page. 

UPCOMING EVENTS

May 11 - Intermediate Band Spring Trip 
May 15-19 - Advanced Band/Jazz Band Spring Trip
May 21 - CMS Band Spring Concert

UPCOMING REHEARSALS

May 6 - Advanced Band, 1:30-4:00
May 7 - Jazz Band, 2:30-4:30
May 8 - Advanced Band, 2:30-4:30
May 10 - Intermediate Band, 2:30-4:30
May 13 - Advanced/Jazz Band, 1:30-4:00
May 14 - Advanced/Jazz Band, 1:30-4:00

GRADE NEWS
This week, students are turning in their final practice log of the school year.  Heading into testing, students should be feeling confident on their parts with minimal stress so they can focus on testing. After we finish testing, I will assign a final playing test that doubles as the Advanced/Jazz Band audition. Just a reminder: students can make up any playing tests up until the last week of school.

SUMMER POPS CAMP
Is your student wishing for more band after the school year is over? Wouldn't it be great to only have band each day and not have to balance it out with 6 other classes?  Well, you're in luck. I'm pleased to announce the inaugural Capital City Summer Pops! This ensemble will be put on by the Capital City Community Band and conducted by Mr. Jacques. Students will learn fun movie themes, marches, and pop selections. Rehearsals will be June 11-14 and 18-21 from 10:30 AM-12:00 PM each day, with a concert on the afternoon of Sunday, June 23. This camp is open to anyone who has been a member of their school's band program. For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

SUMMER JAZZ CAMP
Are you also interested in a summer jazz band opportunity? Well, don't feel left out! The 5th annual Jazz Camp is also on June 11-14 and 18-21, and meets from 8:30-10:00 AM each day. Jazz Camp students must have at least 1 year of playing experience on their current instrument. No prior jazz band experience is necessary.  Students will also have the opportunity to be in both Jazz Camp and the Summer Pops bands.  For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

Have a great weekend, and best of luck to your students during testing week!

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

The 7th Inning Stretch...

Dear Parents,

I posted a similar update a few years ago and I think it's time to repost it: With baseball season officially in full "swing," I've recently started thinking of a school year as being similar to baseball.  What do they have in common?  Well, just like a game has 9 innings, the school year has 9 full months.  There are ones that are filled with quite a lot of activity, and others that are rather quiet.  Being that it's spring break, I realized that we also get our own "7th inning stretch," which, might I add, seemed very necessary for both the students and their director!

Spring break is a great time to recharge and refresh. As easy as it is to forget about practicing, this time is also great for revisiting music-related responsibilities at a more relaxed pace.  All classes have new songs and all classes have their final festivals and concerts of the school year right around the corner. With less than 2 months to go, it's going to be a whirlwind finish to what has been a truly wonderful school year. Here's a list of the rest of the year's events as I know them:

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

April 26: Reno Jazz Festival, 10:05 AM performance
April 30: Northern Zone Beginning Band Festival, 11:10 AM performance
May 1: Northern Zone Jazz Night, 6:00 PM performance
May 11: Intermediate Band Spring Trip
May 15-19: Advanced Band and Jazz Band Spring Trip
May 21: SPRING CONCERT - Mandatory for all ensembles
June 5: 8th Grade Promotion; mandatory for all 6th and 7th grade band members.

SUMMER POPS CAMP
Is your student wishing for more band after the school year is over? Wouldn't it be great to only have band each day and not have to balance it out with 6 other classes?  Well, you're in luck. I'm pleased to announce the inaugural Capital City Summer Pops! This ensemble will be put on by the Capital City Community Band and conducted by Mr. Jacques. Students will learn fun movie themes, marches, and pop selections. Rehearsals will be June 11-14 and 18-21 from 10:30 AM-12:00 PM each day, with a concert on the afternoon of Sunday, June 23. This camp is open to anyone who has been a member of their school's band program. For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

SUMMER JAZZ CAMP
Are you also interested in a summer jazz band opportunity? Well, don't feel left out! The 5th annual Jazz Camp is also on June 11-14 and 18-21, and meets from 8:30-10:00 AM each day. Jazz Camp students must have at least 1 year of playing experience on their current instrument. No prior jazz band experience is necessary.  Students will also have the opportunity to be in both Jazz Camp and the Summer Pops bands.  For more information and to register your student, CLICK HERE.

GRADE NEWS
Last week, students should have submitted their video practice log. If your student received a grade of "0," it's not too late and they can turn it in late through April 22 for up to half credit.  Students also earned their weekly participation points for being prepared and actively participating in their rehearsals. I also updated citizenship last Friday.

I hope your students are enjoying spring break. I miss them already and cannot wait to see them all back on April 23.

-Mr. Jacques-

Monday, April 1, 2019

Can February March? No, but April May...

Dear Parents,

Now that our March events are behind us, we're entering a few quiet weeks in band where students will be learning new music for their next round of spring concerts, trips, and festivals in April and May.  This quick update is to celebrate the amazing performances students had over the past couple of weeks and share what's on tap in the next month.

Washoe County Band Festival
On March 18, the Advanced Band performed at the Washoe County Band Festival and earned 2 "Excellent" ratings and 1 "Superior" rating. They also earned a "Superior" rating in sight reading, which was the highest sight reading rating at the entire festival! 

Jazz Extravaganza
That same evening, the Jazz Band performed a benefit concert with the Carson High School Jazz Band and the Mile High Jazz Band.  Students were very impressive and received many compliments from Mile High Jazz Band members and received a partial standing ovation from the audience.

Northern Zone Band Festival
On March 26, the Advanced Band and Intermediate Band traveled to Yerington to perform in the Northern Zone Band Festival. Intermediate Band earned 2 "Excellent" ratings and Advanced Band earned 2 "Superior" ratings.  Intermediate Band's ratings were the 4th highest at the entire festival, and Advanced Band's ratings were the highest out of all performing groups!

Band-O-Rama
I hope you were all able to attend Band-O-Rama this year, as we had our largest representation of Carson Middle School band students, who also happened to be the best behaved group I've ever had.  Although a few students were talking, chewing gum, or out of uniform, this was the first Band-O-Rama where I did not have to write up any students after the event. It was such a pleasant day and the students played very well. 

Would you like to see any pictures or videos of these performances? Like our page "Carson Middle School Bands" on Facebook!

EVENTS AT-A-GLANCE

April 3-6: All-State Music Festival
April 26: Reno Jazz Festival (morning performance)
April 30: Northern Zone Beginning Band Festival (morning performance)
May 1: Northern Zone Jazz Night (evening performance)
May 11: Intermediate Band Spring Trip (Music in the Parks Festival)
May 15-18: Advanced Band and Jazz Band Spring Trip
May 21: SPRING CONCERT

GRADE NEWS
Everybody has received grades for their concert attendance. If their score is a 180 or 190 out of 200, this means that they were either out of uniform, late, or talking excessively.  A score of "0" is due to an unexcused absence or a missing make-up assignment. Please double check and verify that your student's grade is correct for these performances.

On Wednesday, I will announce a video practice log that will allow students to show a practice strategy and apply it to a piece of music. This will be due on the Friday before spring break.

Have a great week!

-Mr. Jacques-

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

2 Weeks, 5 Events...

Dear Parents,

All your student's hard work so far this semester is about to pay off. In the next 2 weeks, we will have 5 events throughout the band program.

CHILI BINGO NIGHT PROFIT
Thank you to all parents, friends, relatives, and students for participating in a wonderful fundraiser.  We raised a record $14,153 from the event. This was an increase of almost $4,000 over last year, without choir's participation and after offering the concession table to the high school band. What an event!  A special thank-you to all our sponsors, who will be receiving cards in the mail shortly.  We could not have done it without all of you, and this money has helped students immensely with their spring trip costs and it allows us to purchase new instruments.

UNR DAY OF PERCUSSION A SUCCESS
Percussion Ensemble had a fantastic first ever performance at the Northern Nevada Day of Percussion last Friday.  You can find recordings on our Carson Middle School Bands Facebook page. 

CAPITAL CITY COMMUNITY BAND CONCERT - MARCH 17
On March 17, the Capital City Community Band will be performing a concert at the Community Center at 3 PM. The concert will also be a salute to young musicians. We will feature the CMS Percussion Ensemble, clarinet choirs from CMS and CHS, and 2 chamber ensembles from the CMS and CHS orchestras.  All participating students will also attend the dress rehearsal on the evening of March 14. All students attending the entire concert and checking in with me at the end will receive extra credit!  For more information, see the flyer at the top of this page.

WASHOE COUNTY BAND FESTIVAL - MARCH 19
Advanced Band will travel to UNR on March 19 to perform in front of judges and other bands. They perform at 1:50 PM in Nightingale Concert Hall at UNR. This performance is mandatory for students in this group. Participating students received a handout in class, and we are looking for chaperones to accompany the band to this performance.  Advanced Band will have an after school rehearsal on Tuesday, March 12, from 2:30-4:30 PM. For more information, see the flyer at the top of this page.

JAZZ EXTRAVAGANZA - MARCH 19
Save the date! The 6th annual Jazz Extravaganza performance is on March 19 at 7:00 PM in the Carson City Community Center.  The CMS Jazz Band will be performing a benefit concert along with the CHS Jazz Band and our professional group in town, the Mile High Jazz Band. This performance is mandatory for students in this group. All proceeds will go to support both of our district's jazz bands. Tickets are $10 each (free for performers).

NORTHERN ZONE BAND FESTIVAL - MARCH 26
Intermediate Band and Advanced Band will travel to Yerington on March 26 to perform in front of judges and other bands.  This festival is mandatory for students in these groups. We will leave first thing in the morning, and return by the end of the school day. I encourage students to bring work with them for the bus ride so they keep up with their academics. For specific performance times and other details, see the flyer at the top of this page.

BAND-O-RAMA - MARCH 28
Our annual Band-O-Rama is coming up at the end of the month.  This event is mandatory for all students in all ensembles. We will have a rehearsal at CHS that morning, bus everyone back to CMS around 10:30 AM, and call time in the evening will be 6:30 PM. The concert begins at 7:00 PM in the Carson High School gym. See the flyer at the top of this page for more information.

EVENTS AT-A-GLANCE

March 12: Advanced Band Rehearsal, 2:30-4:30 PM

March 17: Capital City Community Band Concert
March 19: Washoe County Band Festival
March 19: Jazz Extravaganza
March 26: Northern Zone Band Festival
March 28: BAND-O-RAMA
April 3-6: All-State Music Festival
April 26: Reno Jazz Festival
April 30: Northern Zone Beginning Band Festival
May 1: Northern Zone Jazz Night
May 11: Intermediate Band Spring Trip (Music in the Parks Festival)
May 15-18: Advanced Band and Jazz Band Spring Trip
May 21: SPRING CONCERT

GRADE NEWS
Quarter 3 ends Thursday.  Thursday is your student's last chance to retake any tests and leave final impressions on Mr. Jacques and fellow students for citizenship. All students attending the spring trips must be passing all classes and have no scores of "1" in citizenship in all class for the 3rd quarter.

Don't forget that attending the Capital City Community Band concert on March 17 will earn your student extra credit. Remember to stay until the end and check in with Mr. Jacques to receive your extra credit.

Have a great week!

-Mr. Jacques-

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

A Busy March...

Dear Parents,

The entire school year in our band program tends to build up to festival season and spring trips.  March is the beginning of these events, and students will experience all their hard work paying off in ways they can't yet imagine.  Here are our March events:

CHILI BINGO NIGHT - MARCH 1
Chili Bingo Night is on Friday from 6-8 PM!  How is your student doing with raffle ticket sales? I will accept raffle tickets until the morning of the event, but I'm encouraging students to get them into me ASAP so it makes the collection process easier.

We only have 6 chili entries as of the time of this newsletter.  WE NEED MORE ENTRIES and with this lower number, your chances of winning cash prizes are even higher! To enter and for all other contest rules, click this link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSe6C16P-9If4xig7QHhXqXN6CIw0JKWG_ivVQrNusakGfdgdQ/viewform

We still need volunteers to help run the event. To sign up for a spot, click this link:  https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c094eaba82ea6f85-2019

UNR DAY OF PERCUSSION - MARCH 8
Our newly created Percussion Ensemble is sounding great and I am excited to have them performing at UNR's Day of Percussion!  We added a rehearsal on Friday, March 1 from 2:30-4:00.  We are also rehearsing on March 5 from 2:30-4:30 in preparation for Day of Percussion. All students received a handout with trip details. If you're free that day, we perform at 10:00 AM in Nightingale Concert Hall on the campus of UNR.

CAPITAL CITY COMMUNITY BAND CONCERT - MARCH 17
On March 17, the Capital City Community Band will be performing a concert at the Community Center at 3 PM. The concert will also be a salute to young musicians. We will feature the CMS Percussion Ensemble, clarinet choirs from CMS and CHS, and 2 chamber ensembles from the CMS and CHS orchestras.  All participating students will also attend the dress rehearsal on the evening of March 14. I will have more information about this performance next week.

WASHOE COUNTY BAND FESTIVAL - MARCH 19
Advanced Band will travel to UNR on March 19 to perform in front of judges and other bands. They perform at 1:50 PM in Nightingale Concert Hall at UNR. This performance is mandatory for students in this group. Participating students received a handout in class, and we are looking for chaperones to accompany the band to this performance.  Advanced Band will have an after school rehearsal on Tuesday, March 12, from 2:30-4:30 PM.

JAZZ EXTRAVAGANZA - MARCH 19
Save the date! The 6th annual Jazz Extravaganza performance is on March 19.  The CMS Jazz Band will be performing a benefit concert along with the CHS Jazz Band and our professional group in town, the Mile High Jazz Band. This performance is mandatory for students in this group. All proceeds will go to support both of our district's jazz bands. Tickets are $10 each (free for performers) and I will have more information next week.

NORTHERN ZONE BAND FESTIVAL - MARCH 26
Intermediate Band and Advanced Band will travel to Yerington on March 26 to perform in front of judges and other bands.  This festival is mandatory for students in these groups. We will leave first thing in the morning, and return by the end of the school day. I encourage students to bring work with them for the bus ride so they keep up with their academics. I'll have a handout with more details next week.

BAND-O-RAMA - MARCH 28
Our annual Band-O-Rama is coming up at the end of the month.  This event is mandatory for all students in all ensembles. We will have a rehearsal at CHS that morning, bus everyone back to CMS around 10:30 AM, and call time in the evening will be 6:30 PM. The concert begins at 7:00 PM in the Carson High School gym. I'll have additional information about this next week. In the meantime, save the date!

EVENTS AT-A-GLANCE

March 1: Chili Bingo Night
March 8: UNR Day of Percussion
March 19: Washoe County Band Festival
March 19: Jazz Extravaganza
March 26: Northern Zone Band Festival
March 28: BAND-O-RAMA
April 3-6: All-State Music Festival
April 26: Reno Jazz Festival
April 30: Northern Zone Beginning Band Festival
May 1: Northern Zone Jazz Night
May 11: Intermediate Band Spring Trip (Music in the Parks Festival)
May 15-18: Advanced Band and Jazz Band Spring Trip
May 21: SPRING CONCERT

GRADE NEWS
Video playing tests are due Thursday night. If students do not complete their video by Thursday night, they will perform their playing test on Friday in class. 

Practice logs are also due on Friday.  I will not assign a practice log or playing test for at least a couple weeks so they can focus on the upcoming performances.

There's our upcoming month. Sounds like a lot, doesn't it?  Let's make it through Friday, have a wonderful evening together in the CMS gym for Chili Bingo Night, and kick off March with some family fun and amazing prizes.  See you then!

-Mr. Jacques-