Middle School Music Program
The Middle School Music program expands on the performance opportunities for student-musicians. Fifth & Sixth Grade students have the option of further developing their vocal techniques in chorus or joining the band program wherein they can begin or continue studies on wind, brass or percussion instruments. Seventh & Eighth Grade continues this with more advanced studies.
In Chorus, students establish good vocal habits and techniques such as posture, breathing, vowel formation, diction, etc. They also develop their musicianship through sight-reading, learning to follow a score and singing pieces with more than one vocal line.
Middle School students also participate in General Music classes. The frequency of this course varies depending on grade level. In each grade, these courses are highly participatory and continue to develop skills from Lower School using John Feierabend's "Conversational Solfege" program. They also include more advanced elements of music history, composition and instrumental performance.
Performance pieces will focus on the traditional high school band compositions, but will also include jazz and popular arrangements. Private lessons are highly recommended to all members of the ensemble, and weekly sectional lessons during study hall blocks are provided for all ninth and tenth grade members. Performances are culminating experiences without an equivalent substitute and are a required component of the course. Unique to the Wind Ensemble is our annual Pops Concert that is performed before the entire school body, as well as a special annual concert at the College of Saint Rose with members of the Empire State Youth Orchestra (ESYO).