HHS Bands Blog!
Friday, April 29, 2016
  Band room disaster and reopening plea!


Hi everybody,



First of all, thanks to everyone who came out to collage.  It went really well, and was a very special night for the kids and I as we sent Mr. Bushey off.  As always, I am super proud of the way our kids performed and conducted themselves!

But now the bad news: (READ THE POST BELOW TO FOR CONTACT NUMBER)


Same day as Collage (yesterday, 4/28/2016), the roof over the band room leaked and flooded two rooms in the band complex. The uniform room and the booster room.  The instrument storage room also had a leak but it was minor.  Lots of damage to the cabinets storing all the uniforms and booster items, a fair amount of damage to some of the uniforms and booster items themselves.  Special thanks to Ms. Miller, Ms. Rushlow, Ms. Smathers, Connor Norton, and anyone else that responded quickly along with the kids (and their epic drive to help the mothership!).  The band room is closed today and we are going to try and reopen on Monday.


WE NEED YOUR HELP!! ANY PARENTS OR STUDENTS WILLING PLEASE SHOW UP AT 7AM IN THE BAND ROOM ON MONDAY!  WE ARE GOING TO DO OUR BEST TO PUT THE ROOM BACK TOGETHER AND GET THE PROGRAM MOVING AGAIN.  WE ALSO SHOULD HAVE AN IDEA WHERE TO PUT UNIFORMS UNTIL THE SITUATION IS REPAIRED AND STABLE.


OK that's all I have.  Have a good weekend and get ready to hit the ground running again on Monday!


-Smigell



 
  HELP NEEDED
Monday morning at 7am, we need anyone willing and able to help put uniforms and equipment back in their proper place.  Any adult help is appreciated.  If you didn't hear, the roof leaked in the uniform room and the booster room.  The many who came out on Thursday to help get things out and dry were greatly appreciated.  If you're able to help, please contact Christyne MacDermaid so I know how many are coming.  734-476-0312. 
THANK YOU BAND FAMILIES!!!
 
Sunday, April 24, 2016
  NYC Trip Delayed Return

We are running behind due to traffic.  We are about 30 miles East of Cedar Point atm.  The GPS says a 2hr 30min drive still (unless we hit traffic again). Time of arrival shall be about 11am now.

We would appreciate it if all the students could help unload all the buses before they go home.  If parents that are picking up the students could help unloading the bus,  that would be greatly appreciated.

We will keep you posted if there are any more delays.

 
Thursday, April 21, 2016
  my post for the symphony!
Hey folks!

Here are my little notes on the pieces for tonight's performance of the philharmonic:

(Post was made with a phone so excuse the typos)

Mr. Smigell's  fun little link list to the symphony :)

We are going to see and hear Sibelius 7th symphony and Das lied Von Der erde by Mahler (the song of the earth)!

ITS GONNA BE AWESOME

TIPS FOR GOING TO THE SYMPHONY AND ENJOYING IT:

1. Be polite to those around you.  Don't talk during the music (between movements is fine).  DONT USE YOUR PHONE FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING HOLY!!!
2. It is ok if you are bored sometimes! I have two degrees in music and I get fidgety sitting through an hour's worth of symphony! It's alright! You will find that you become refocused in a little while.  When music is that long, here are times when the composer is. "Working through" themes to get to the interesting parts.  Try to listen to what the composer is doing with the theme.

Things to look at when between important parts of the music (you are bored)
-look at all the bows going up and down together!
Look at what each instrument player does when they are a pro!
-try to see if the players are doing what the conductor wants.  Does the sound follow his hands? Does the orchestras movement match his movement?
-try to see if the conductor ever makes a mistake! Sometimes they do!
-watch the percussionists! They sit around a lot but when they do stuff, they are so precise and incredible!

3. Don't clap in between movements!  When in doubt, wait to clap until everyone else does.

4. We will have been going hard since 8 that morning! You might get a little sleepy... That's ok.  Happens to the best of us.

5. Don't feel bad if you don't understand everything that is going on.  Many many MANY season ticket holders don't know either (they just pretend to).
6. You know a lot more about music than you think.  Just because you don't know the vocabulary doesn't mean your enjoyment is any less than an expert!  If you enjoyed yourself, that's genuine!
7. You might just find out you love classical music!  Don't worry, I won't tell a soul ;)

Here is a YouTube of Leonard Bernstein conducting the song of the earth!

Check out this video on YouTube:

http://youtu.be/idRevTkIPts

And here is the YouTube of Sibelius symphony #7, again with Leonard Bernstein conducting! (He is one of my very favorites!)


http://youtu.be/dfwLm1rW14Q

THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT SIBELIUS 7:

- It was the last big thing Sibelius wrote even though he lived for 33 years afterward!
- It's short for a symphony... about 23 minutes all in one movement!
- It is considered to be one of his greatest achievements!
- It has lots of big epic parts and beautiful quiet parts, try to find the themes and when they come back a little different!
- It has plenty of wind instruments playing in it!  See if you can hear yours when it plays!  Listen to the sounds they are making! Isn't it great?
- This is an upbeat little symphony that is big on sound and tries to show "the joy of life and vitality"



If you want to read a lot about it with both audio and musical examples, Wikipedia does a great job:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_No._7_(Sibelius)

Soooo... On the the song of the earth

THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT SONG OF THE EARTH IF YOU WANT TO ENJOY THE MUSIC AND BE OBLIVIOUS TO THE UNDERLYING THEMES

-the music is epic!! Mahler is many classical music fans' favorite composer because his music contains so much passion and emotion.  The highs are so high!  The lows, so low. He is definitely regarded are one of those once or twice in a century kind of geniuses like Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, etc etc.

-ITS REALLY LONG!  about an hour!

-a lot of the lyrics are inspired by Chinese poetry.  I also think that some of the music has a teency bit of a 19th century composers taste of "Chinese music" in it too here and there.

-many many big time experts regard this as his finest symphony.

-ever heard the curse of the 9th symphony? There is a running superstition amongst composers because many great composers died after they wrote their ninth symphony (cough cough.. Beethoven) so he purposefully did not give this symphony a number, as it was his ninth.  (Read the bummer spoiler for more details)

Only scroll down if you want the whole story... It's a bit of a downer :-/








You sure?














Ok















THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT SONG OF THE EARTH IF YOU WANT TO KNOW THE WHOLE STORY (spoiler, it's a bummer)

-the symphony was written during a very sad time of his life.  His daughter had died, Mahler was near the end of his life and he knew it.. He had just been diagnosed with a heart condition that was eventually going to kill him and it stopped him from doing the two things he loved most, conducting and hiking.

-The lyrics to the pretty songs are a bummer, but they are heart-rendingly poignant and beautiful.

-even though Mahler tried to avoid the curse, it got him anyway.  He never finished the tenth symphony (which he tried to call his ninth)

-the symphony is about Mahler contemplating life and a lot of his own mortality (death).  Unfortunately (fortunately for us) many times an artist will do their best work when They are suffering the worst.  This is it for Mahler, his finest work.  The bittersweet combination of good memories, regrets, joy! fear of dying, and in the end, finding peace and redemption. The last movement is called abshied.. Farewell.  I cry every time at the end.  If you don't know what it's about, it simply is the best lullaby you've ever heard.  I bet half our group is asleep at the end, especially with the day we are going to have!!

GOOD NEWS? Unless you understand German, most of the sadness will be lost on you :)

This one is the link to the NYP's actual page of the event: it has some brief (somewhat depressing when talking about mahler) program notes, and a little link to listen to some of it.  It also has the nyp maestro Alan Gilbert talking about the pieces :)

http://nyphil.org/concerts-tickets/1516/gilbert-sibelius-mahler

And here is the link to the wiki of song of the earth:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Das_Lied_von_der_Erde
 
Tuesday, April 19, 2016
  HHS NYC Trip
The HHS NYC Band Trip is here!

NYC Trip:

1) NO NUTS on the bus / in rooms. We have some students who are severely allergic to all nuts - so to make sure we have a safe environment for them, we ask everyone to please do not bring anything with nuts to snack on on the bus / eat in the rooms. Thanks!

2) Clothes. We have a few announcements to make about changing into nice clothes. You will only need 2 nice outfits now - (One for the Symphony and one for the Broadway - details below). Once we leave the hotel for the day - we don't return until the night.

  • Wednesday =>; Thursday: Everyone needs to have their Thursday daytime (casual) outfit and one of their nice outfits for the Symphony (and w/e else they need for them - aka toiletries, dress shoes, etc.) in their carry on when they get on the bus on Wednesday. We won't be able to get into our suitcases until we check into the hotel on Thursday night - so make sure you have everything you need with you in your carry on. Changing rooms will be available at the hotel (when we get there for breakfast) and we will stop to change somewhere later on in the day for the Symphony.
  • Friday:  To make everyone more comfortable throughout the day (and to save time) - student's don't need to dress up for their music clinician performance anymore. Whatever you wear at the clinician will be what you will wear all day until we change for the Broadway show. We ask students to not wear holey or stained clothes - but they are allowed to wear jeans and a tshirt if they want. Everyone most bring their formal outfit / shoes  / etc. that they are going to wear to the Broadway show w/ them on their carry on. We will stop and change somewhere later on in the day for the Broadway. 
  • Saturday: AKA - Casual Saturday. Only bring whatever you want to wear / need for the bus ride home on your carry on. You will not have access to your suitcase once we load it up.
Forms:
Release Form, Medical, Special Needs Request and Info Packet / Packing ListHere
 Final Itinerary - (Minor changes like where we will stop to change is not on the itinerary since due to the nature of the trip, the exact timing will depend on how we are progressing / traffic /etc.)

Packing List:  Here

Students are responsible for 3 lunches on trip - including anything else they want to buy and / or snack on. It is recommended to at least bring $50 for the 3 lunches since pricing is expensive (think Cedar Point or Disney expensive).



NYC Trip Report Time / Leaving / Arriving:

Report Time is at 5pm on Wednesday, April 20th . Everyone must check in - this includes chaperones.

Eat dinner before checking in - the buses won't be stopping for a while after we leave.

We will be arriving at HHS on Sunday, April 24th at about 9:30am - We will update the blog / Facebook when we are within 1 hr from the HS with a clear ETA (because traffic is always a mystery when traveling).

Senior Students on the NYC:
A Reminder: Tomorrow is the only day you can buy prom tickets. They are $50 and won't be on sale after this week.

~ Nicole "Jade" Prewett


 
  We are looking for 2 male students and 1 female chaperone to go on our New York trip at a discounted rate.  Please contact Christyne MacDermaid at 734-476-0312 for more information. 
Monday, April 18, 2016
  Anyone works near Lake Orion?

We have Lake Orion High School's cymbal stand.  If someone anyone who works that direction and they are willing to drop it off for us.  Please contact Mr.  Smigell at: smigellj@howellschools.com.

Thanks!

~ Nicole "Jade"  Prewett

 
Friday, April 15, 2016
  Lock-In is Tonight - Band Camp Forms / Deposit Due - A Little Info on NYC Trip - Meier Flowerland Fundraiser Hey Guys! Here is some things that you should know!

Lock-In:

The annual HHS Band Lock-in is Tonight, April 15th @9pm - Tomorrow, April 16th @5am. It is for all students in the HHS Band Program and 8th graders. Admission is $10 to help cover costs for food / drinks. Super fun night. Info Form and Permission slip below.

Info Form: Here
Permission Slip: Here

Band Camp:


Students who plan to participate in Howell High School Highlander Marching Band in the 2016 -2017 school year must attend camp in August. Camp begins with pre-camp dates at Howell High School, followed by 5 days/ 4 nights together at Eagle Village. 

Pre-Band Camp: 8am – 4pm @ Howell High School
Thursday, August 11: Leadership Day – Squad Leaders and Drum Majors
Friday, August 12: New Member Day – Everyone New to HHS Marching Band
Band Camp @ Eagle Village: http://www.eaglevillage.org/
Sunday, August 14 to Thursday, August 18: Everyone


The Information Packet and Forms that was handed out during the info meeting and that is on the sheet shack. Band Camp Packet: .docx // .pdf

Full Band Camp Costs is $325 - unless paid in full on initial deposit (which is $300).
Initial payment of $50 and all forms are due on TODAY. (You can hand it in at the Lock-In too!)


NYC Trip:

The trip is next week - Who else is excited? ^.^ We have a few announcements about the trip.

1) NO NUTS on the bus / in rooms. We have some students who are severely allergic to all nuts - so to make sure we have a safe environment for them, we ask everyone to please do not bring anything with nuts to snack on on the bus / eat in the rooms. Thanks!

2) Clothes. We have a few announcements to make about changing into nice clothes. You will only need 2 nice outfits now - (One for the Symphony and one for the Broadway - details below). Once we leave the hotel for the day - we don't return until the night.

Forms:
Release Form, Medical, Special Needs Request and Info Packet / Packing List: Here
 Final Itinerary - (Minor changes like where we will stop to change is not on the itinerary since due to the nature of the trip, the exact timing will depend on how we are progressing / traffic /etc.)

We will have another post next week about any other announcements - :)

NYC Trip Rehearsal Dates:

If you are going on the New York Trip and play an instrument, you must make THREE of the FOUR rehearsals. Here are the last two left:

Monday, April 18th, 2:30-4:30PM

Tuesday April 19th, 5-7PM

If there are conflicts please let Mr. Smigell know.  Also, the "three out of four" rule does not mean you should only come to three of the rehearsals.  If you can make all four, please do.

NYC Trip Report Time / Leaving / Arriving:

Report Time is at 5pm on Wednesday, April 20th . Everyone must check in - this includes chaperones.

We will be arriving at HHS on Sunday, April 24th at about 9:30am - We will update the blog / Facebook when we are within 1 hr from the HS with a clear ETA (because traffic is always a mystery when traveling).

Fundraiser:

Meier Flowerland Fundraiser goes until Tuesday, May 3rd - and cards will delivered on Thursday, May 5th. The information and forms are on the sheet shack next to Mr. Smigell's office.

Collage Concert:

Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band and Percussion Ensemble will team up with the choir program and other special guests for an amazing concert. This will be Mr. Bushey's last Collage Concert with us. :(

The Collage Concert is Thursday, April 28th at 7pm - and it's free!

~~~~~~~~~~

That's all the information I have to forward to you guys. Have a fun night at the Lock-in tonight and I can't until next week!

~ Nicole "Jade" Prewett







 
Friday, April 08, 2016
  HHS Band Program Lock-In

Lock-In Info and Forms:

The annual HHS Band Lock-in is Friday April 15th @9pm - Saturday April 16th @5am. It is for all students in the HHS Band Program and 8th graders. Admission is $10 to help cover costs for food / drinks. Super fun night for everyone involved. Info Form and Permission slip below.

Info Form: Here
Permission Slip: Here


Chaperones are needed in order for this event to take place. If you can help, please go to Volunteer Spot at the link below to sign up! Contact Christyne MacDermaid at 734-476-0312 or Laura Allegoet at 586-214-4986 with questions. Thank you!

Sign Up Link: http://vols.pt/q9RmUX


Thanks!

~ Nicole "Jade" Prewett



 
This is a message distribution forum for the Howell High School band. If you have any questions, you can email the director, Jason Smigell at smigellj@howellschools.com. The band office phone number is 517 540 8300 ext 86194. Emails sent to the howellschools.com email address are public. All personal, non-business emails should be directed to jsmigell@mac.com

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