Pope students did a FANTASTIC job at the honor band/all state tryouts this past weekend. Pope placed 56 students in the District Honor Bands (3rd highest participation of any school in the District!) We also had 41 students pass to the 2nd round of the All State auditions! Congratulations to all the Pope students who took the tryout and especially to those who made a band and/or the cut for All State.
Congratulations to all of the Pope Ensembles and the Hightower Trail 8th Grade Band for outstanding holiday programs. The Annual Fine Arts Showcase was a huge success and the groups all performed magnificently! A highlight of the evening was the group of “guest conductors” from the audience during “Sleigh Ride”. Many thanks to all who helped make this event a success.
Our Winter Concert at HTMS also produced fine performances from the Ninth Grade Band, 8th Grade Band, Symphonic Band, and Ninth Grade Percussion Ensemble. Thanks to the PBPA volunteers for setting up the reception following the concert.
Now we look ahead to second semester and the start of the LGPE (Large Group Performance Evaluation) process. It is our state music association equivalent of an “end of course” test. This evaluation involves the most advanced music that we will learn and perform all year, and it does take some extra time to prepare. Look over the calendars for January through March and work out the potential conflicts with after school sectionals and Symphonic Band Camp now. We need all students in attendance at our scheduled rehearsals. The top two bands have more extra time commitment, while the third band is predominantly class periods and rehearsals during AO periods inside the school day.
Symphonic Camp is an annual event that involves all three second semester bands. The Concert Band (band three) will only rehearse on Friday evening. They will have a guest conductor for that rehearsal block. The Symphonic Band and Wind Symphony will rehearse Friday evening and from 9am-5pm on Saturday. They will have a guest conductor and also a time for section rehearsals with area professionals for their instrument. Please work out any conflicts, as this will be the only time the students will get to work with a guest conductor and section coaches in this setting.
We are looking forward to an outstanding second semester with all three bands! Make sure to attend the Pre-LGPE Concert and go to the LGPE performances to support our groups.
Sometimes it seems we spend more time "parenting" than teaching. We talk to the kids about behavior, public image, social media use, teamwork, time management, goals, and the list goes on...
We try to make them aware that EVERYTHING affects your image and your performance. Getting something EXACTLY right and getting something SORT OF right are not the same thing. Imagine flying on an airliner where the pilot safely lands "most of the time"... would you sign up for a ticket?
As picky as it might seem, we talked about how to wear the concert attire on numerous occasions during the Fall semester. Specifically, we addressed shoes and socks. For the gentlemen, we said several times over 4 months: "full length black dress socks...no anklets or footies."