HOW TO BAND GUIDE

You Have Questions, We Have Answers!

High School Band comes with it's own language and traditions.  There is a lot to learn!  So we have put together a list of the most frequently asked questions. Hopefully you will find your questions and concerns addressed here. 

If you do not find the answer you are looking for, please email a director for assistance.

BAND BASICS

How Can Band Parents Stay Informed?


  1. Sign up for the Parent Remind: Directors will send out pertinent information with Remind texts. For parents of younger band students, we recommend that in addition to the Parent Remind you also sign up for the Student Remind so that you can help your student adjust to the responsibilities of High School Band. Please email the directors or the Band Booster Club for the Remind codes.
  2. Check the Band Calendar: The band calendar has the most up to date information about events and activities. Make sure to click on the actual activity to see additional information. We have created a link to make subscribing to our calendar a breeze.
  3. Attend the Monthly Booster Meetings: Booster club meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month at 7pm in the Band Hall. These meetings are a great way to stay informed!
  4. Read the Weekly Newsletters: Each week the booster club sends out a newsletter highlighting important information and dates. If you are not receiving the newsletter, please email our IT person to be added to our listserv.
  5. Call or Email Your Band Buddy: In the beginning you will have a lot of questions! Don’t hesitate to contact your Band Buddy and ask them anything that you don’t understand.




Do I Need to Own My Instrument?


Most instruments do need to be privately owned/rented and maintained by the student. There are a select few instruments (ie: tuba, euphonium, mellophones, etc) that are school owned and rented to students. If you are unsure whether or not you need to purchase/rent your own instrument, please email one of the directors.




What is the Time Commitment for Band?


Per Texas State (UIL) Law, before/after school activities are only allowed to practice for 8 hours per week once school has begun. During the summer, we have a Band Camp that runs during the weeks leading into the school year. These weeks are more intensive to prepare us for the marching season. When school starts, the band will practice after school. During the marching season there are Friday night football game commitments (performances) as well as Saturday Contests (competition) throughout the Fall Semester. The marching season finishes during the first part of November, and then the Band will only play at football games.




What are the Uniform Requirements?


  • Uniforms are provided by the band. All alterations will be made by the Booster Club. In addition to their issued uniform students will need: a band shirt, band shorts, marching shoes. All of these items can be purchased at Registration or from a uniform officer.
  • It is also very important that your student have a pair of good athletic shoes for practice. These shoes can be kept in their band locker for them to change into after school if they would like to wear other shoes to school; however, a good pair of athletic shoes is very important in keeping your student in good marching condition on the blacktop.




What is a “Report Time”?


Report time is the designated time that the students must be ready (dressed, full water bottle, instrument, etc.) and in the CPHS Band Hall or other assigned area.




Are there Any Uniform Restrictions during Marching Season?


In order to give our band a cohesive appearance we do have guidelines for student's appearances while they are on the field:

  1. Students will not wear makeup while in uniform.
  2. Jewelry, hair ribbons & nail polish are not allowed while in uniform.
  3. Hair must be its natural color.
  4. Hair must not touch the collar of the jacket and must be above the top of the ear or pulled behind it. No visible hair on forehead.
  5. Students must be clean shaven while in uniform.




What is Charms?


Charms is an online program that the band utilizes to maintain student records, contact information, inventory, UIL contest registration, and many other important aspects of the band program. It’s basically the digital hub behind the scenes holding the band machine together! Making sure your contact information is current in this database system is extremely important and will help keep you in the loop!




What is the “No Pass / No Play” Policy?


The Texas Education Agency defines band as a performing art and concert and marching performances are an extension of class time. Attendance at rehearsals and performances is required and is a part of the band grade. A student will be suspended from participating in any extracurricular activity (marching band activities, pep rallies, parades, UIL solo and ensemble and other competitions) after a six week grading period in which a student receives a grade below a 70. The student will remain eligible and responsible for band and technique class requirements including sectionals and performances. Interim progress reports are issued in the middle of each six week period to students who are borderline or failing a class. Students can ‘regain’ eligibility at this time if he/she is passing. AP students do have the opportunity to apply for a waiver to remain eligible. Please email your student's counselor for more information about this process.




How can Students Earn Their Letter Jacket?


  • If your student would like to earn their Letter Jacket before their Senior year, they need to meet the criteria set out in the Hand Book. Please visit the Handbook for those requirements.
  • If your child has participated in the band program for 3 continuous years and plans to continue their Senior year, they are eligible to apply for a Letter Jacket.




What is a “Gupton Rehearsal”?


There will be times during the Marching Season that the band will practice at the Gupton Stadium. These practices will be on the Band Calendar. On these days students will go home after school, and they will need to find their own transportation to the stadium. Students need to arrive at the stadium by 5:30 pm and rehearsal will conclude at 9pm. It is wise if students can eat before practice. Students will need to wear a white shirt, shorts and athletic shoes to this practice. Students will need to bring a full water jug and their instrument to the stadium (and any other item the director requires). Parents are allowed to be in the stands and watch this practice. Please check the Band Calendar for dates and times.





SUMMER BAND

What is Summer Band?


In order to get the band prepared for our marching performance, students are required to attend marching practice in the weeks leading up to the beginning of school. Attendance is required for all band students. Students will need to report to summer band with their instrument, full band water jug, good athletic shoes, lunch & snacks, their phone, and sun protection (hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, etc.). Summer Band times will be listed on the Marching Band Calendar.




Is Attendance Required?


Yes. It is imperative to the marching programs success to have all students attend Summer Band. Please consult the band calendar for summer band dates, and plan your vacation accordingly. Allowances are made for students marching with DCI.




Is Lunch Provided?


No, lunch is not provided. Students will need to bring their lunch with them. Students are not allowed to leave during the lunch break.




Are Drinks Provided?


No, that is why it is CRUCIAL for your student to bring a FULL BAND water jug with them to camp every day. During the day, there will be opportunities for students to refill their jugs. You are also allowed to send additional drinks with your students, but please avoid sugary beverages. ( Pro Tip: To make ice for your student's band water jug use a circular ziplock container or quart sized yogurt/cream cheese container. These make larger chunks of ice that fit inside the water jug, and keep the water colder longer.)




Can my Student Wear a Hat/ Sunglasses?


Yes! Students are highly encouraged to bring sun protection. This includes: sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, spf shirts, etc.




What Type of Shoes Should My Student Wear to Summer Band?


  • In marching band we see many injuries that are a result of improper footwear. In order to protect our students and keep them marching, students should wear a good pair of athletic shoes that provides them with the support they need to have a good foundation on the blacktop. A good pair of athletic shoes will help prevent twisted & rolled ankles, shin splints, sprains and many more injuries.
  • Ms. Stevenson has come up with Athletic Shoe Recommendations for men & women:





GAME DAYS

What is the Typical Schedule for a Game Day?


On Game Days students will remain on campus after school. Please do not ask for any exceptions. On Game Day the students will:

  • report to the Band Hall after the final bell
  • have a short rehearsal
  • eat dinner
  • gather their uniform & instrument
  • load the busses
  • play at the football game
  • load the busses
  • return to CPHS




What Does My Student Need for Game Day?


On Game Days students need to bring:

  • Garment Bag
  • Band Shorts
  • Show / Section Shirt
  • Black Socks
  • Marching Shoes
  • Water Jug
  • Flip Folder
  • Instrument




Where Should I Sit at Football Games?


Most parents sit in the stands closest to the band. This is a perfect time to wear your Band Spirit Wear!




Am I Allowed to Visit My Student at the Football Game?


Football games are considered to be an extension of the classroom, and for everyone’s safety adults are not allowed into the band section of the stands. This helps us to keep everyone safe. Students are not allowed to accept outside food and beverages from parents while at football games unless given permission from the Band Director.




Where do I Buy Football Tickets?


  • Leander ISD Athletic Department does sell Reserved Season Tickets for Varsity football games. Check this link for more information:
  • Tickets can also be purchased from the school and at the stadium.
  • LISD Ticket Prices for Varsity Football Games
    • Adults: $7
    • Students: $3




What is a "Section Shirt"


  • Every year Section Leaders choose a theme for their group. T-Shirts are designed to reflect this theme, and the Section Leaders sell & distribute these shirts to members of their instrument group. This is a student led activity, and directors have no part in this process. If you have any questions regarding the section shirts, reach out to a fellow parent in your student's instrument section.
  • On Game Days students are allowed to wear their section shirts; however, if not all members of the group are wearing the shirt then the section has to wear their Timberwolf Band uniform shirt.




How Will I Know When to Pick my Student Up?


Students are encouraged to call/text their parents on the way home to the school, but an expected end time will always be posted.





COMPETITION DAYS

What Are Band Competitions?


Just like other sports, Marching Band participates in scored contests. These contests usually take place on Saturdays. Competitions are divided into Preliminary Performances and Final Performances. Please consult the Marching Band Calendar for the dates of contests.




What is the Difference Between UIL & BOA Competitions?


  • UIL is the organization that creates rules for and administers almost all athletic, musical, and academic contests for public primary and secondary schools in Texas. At UIL competitions, schools compete against other schools in the same UIL conference (we are 5A). CLICK HERE to Link to the UIL Scoring Rubric
  • Bands of America is an independent company that hosts competitions throughout the nation. BOA is not connected to the school districts. When competing at BOA bands are assigned to a competing class based on the total enrolled students at each band's high school enrollment levels (grades 10 through 12). Classes are used to determine preliminary placements and awards. The highest-scoring bands regardless of class advance to finals performance. Class champions who do not advance to finals are invited to perform in exhibition. Link to the BOA scoring rubric:




What is a Typical Schedule for Competition Days?


Report times will differ for each contest, and you will be able to find schedules on the Marching Band Calendar. A typical Competition Day Schedule is:

  • report to band hall
  • rehearsal
  • students will gather uniforms & supplies
  • load the busses
  • arrive at the competition site
  • unload
  • rehearse
  • perform in the Preliminary round
  • regroup and take a break (if able)
  • gather for the announcement of awards
  • Finals:
    • If we are selected for Finals: we rehearse, and perform, and wait for the final awards, and then we will head back to the school.
    • If we are not selected for Finals: we load up the students, and head back to the school.




If the Band has a Long Break Between Performances, Can I Take My Student Home?


No, the entire band stays together until the competition is over. The time between performances is used to rehearse or for study time.




Will Meals be Provided on Competition Days?


Yes, meals will be provided on competition days. Meal times will vary according to the competition performance schedule. The schedule will alert families to exactly which meals will be provided. Students are encouraged to bring snacks. Please send your student with money in case we are able to stop at Buc-ees! We try to stop whenever our schedule/route allows us the opportunity!




Should I Send My Student with Money?


Yes! If time allows we do allow students to shop for souvenirs. Also we always stop at Buc-ee's if our schedule / route permits us the opportunity!




Can I Videotape Performances?


  • You may videotape at UIL & Football performances.
  • You ARE NOT allowed to videotape at BOA performances.




What are the Ticket Prices?


Prices for competitions vary. UIL competitions only require one (1) ticket. BOA competitions have separate tickets for the Preliminary Performance and the Finals Performance. You do have the option of buying each separately or you can purchase the combined ticket.




Am I Allowed to Clap & Cheer at Competitions?


Yes! In fact we encourage you to make some noise for our band! Please read through this document on Competition Etiquette to get the lowdown on competition behaviour.




What Criteria is Used to Judge Marching Competitions?


MUSIC PERFORMANCE :
How well does the band play? Are they in tune? Are they together? Do they have an "ensemble sound"?

VISUAL PERFORMANCE:
How well do they march? Are they in step? How clean (together) is the color guard work? How is their body carriage? How are the horn angles? How is the spacing?

GENERAL EFFECT:
Is the music conveying a mood or message to the audience? Is the entire visual program conveying a mood or message to the audience? Are the forms and movements readable? How well do both music and visual integrate into a total package that represents the theme?

PERCUSSION:
How clean (together) is the percussion section? Are they playing musically? Is the front ensemble (pit) playing with the rest of the ensemble? How well do they balance with the wind section?

AUXILIARY:
How clean (together) is the color guard? Is their choreography properly reflecting the music? Is the difficulty of the work appropriate for the performers?





CONCERT SEASON

What is Concert Season?


In the Spring semester the band gears up to participate in the UIL Concert programs. Each band will have 3 pieces that they will perform at the UIL Concert competition.




What are the Uniform Requirements for Concert Season?


  • Uniforms are provided for the students: girls wear black dresses and boys wear tuxedos. The uniforms are fitted and altered by the Band Booster Club. All students are required to wear black dress shoes.
  • Boys will have to purchase the additional items: black bow tie, black cumberbund, and a pleated tuxedo shirt. These items can be purchased as a bundle at Al’s Formal Wear (Lakeline Mall).




Am I Allowed to Attend the UIL Concert?


Yes! Parents and friends are encouraged to attend the UIL performance. The dates, times and locations will be published on the Band Calendar and in the Booster Newsletter.




What is the Correct UIL Concert Etiquette?


  • Please silence your cell phone before entering the auditorium
  • Only enter the auditorium between performances.
  • You should NOT enter while a band is performing.
  • Please do not talk during performances.
  • Clapping at the end of performances is encouraged.





VOLUNTEERING

Are There Any Requirements to Become a Volunteer?


All volunteers MUST COMPLETE the Leander ISD Volunteer Application. This is a requirement to volunteer with the Band in ANY capacity. CLICK HERE to APPLY TO BECOME AN APPROVED LEANDER ISD VOLUNTEER




How Can I Volunteer?


As you can imagine, it takes a lot of volunteers to make our Band successful. We have an assortment of volunteer opportunities that appeal to a variety of different skills and interests. And the good news is that it is easy to get involved! The Booster Vice President oversees volunteer opportunities, and will distribute a Volunteer Interest Sheet. You can also approach any Booster Executive Board Member, and they can help you get involved




What are the Main Volunteer Needs?


The Band has a variety of opportunities to volunteer, but we do have 4 areas that are very important to Marching Season:

  • Chaperones: The Band requires chaperones for football games, competitions, and events. Chaperones ride the busses, and assist in keeping the students safe and providing support.
  • Meal Helpers: These volunteers assist in distributing food for the Band before football games. Volunteers are needed in the late afternoon in the CPHS cafeteria before the students board the busses. This is an easy and fun way to get involved!
  • Pit Pack: This is an essential job in the Band. On game & competition days, these volunteers are responsible for the loading & delivery of the band’s instruments and show props. Volunteers also help to move & maneuver instruments and props onto the field. This job truly gets a front row view of the Band! Pit Pack is also the group that develops & builds the show props.
  • Photographers: At every band event we have a team of photographers that have all access passes that allow them to capture all the special moments. The pictures taken are downloaded onto our Smug Mug website, and parents are welcome to download photos at no cost.





REGION / STATE BAND

What is Region & State Band?


Just like in middle school band, students in the Cedar Park Timberwolf Band compete in the TMEA All-State (Region Band) process! Although Cedar Park is a 5A high school, our band students compete on the 6A track in this process!




What Musical Pieces Do the Students Play?


Students are assigned 3 etudes at the beginning of the year.




When Are Auditions?


Auditions are held during the months of November, December, and January.




What is the Difference Between Middle School & High School TMEA Bands?


Perhaps the most exciting difference between the high school & middle school region experience is that, in high school, it doesn’t stop at Region Band / Orchestra! In high school, it’s possible to advance to Area and even State!




What Does the State Band Entail?


Students who earn membership in the TMEA All-State Band get to travel to San Antonio for 4 days and make music with the finest musicians in the State of Texas!




How Do Students Prepare for These Auditions?


All students participate in weekly Master Classes (sectionals) throughout the Fall semester to prepare for the auditions.





 

CEDAR PARK BAND BOOSTERS | P.O. BOX 2322 CEDAR PARK, TX 78630

CHRISTOPHER YEE - DIRECTOR OF BANDS | CEDAR PARK HIGH SCHOOL | 512-570-1259

THIS WEBSITE IS OWNED AND MAINTAINED BY THE CEDAR PARK HIGH SCHOOL BAND BOOSTERS.

IT IS NOT SANCTIONED, AFFILIATED OR SUPPORTED BY LEANDER ISD OR CEDAR PARK HIGH SCHOOL.