Update for April 25

Thanks be to God for our FVL Schools Band Program!

We have arrived at the last week of the Cadet Band and Concert Winds rehearsal and performance schedule!  We thank our gracious God for His blessings on our program!  Without His guidance our efforts would be in vain.  We also thank Him for our wonderful parents and volunteers who help in countless ways to ensure the success of our young musicians.  We thank Him for the directors of our program and their professionalism and the joy for music that that they share with the bands. We thank Him for the many principals and teachers at our member schools, for helping to promote band and make it possible to give lessons during the school day. Last, but certainly not least, we thank God for the many students who make up our FVL Schools Band Program!  Their endless source of energy and enthusiasm is a constant pick-me-up for all of us who work with them week in and week out.

I also want to thank our band members for their efforts in lessons this year!  I am amazed every week with the progress our students are making in their lesson books, but more importantly to see how they are growing as musicians.  Playing an instrument is an activity that begins somewhat slowly for most students, but as they start to "get it"; it becomes increasingly more enjoyable as a player when they begin to produce really excellent music.  It is also an activity that they can enjoy for many years to come, as they enter high school, college, and beyond.  This year we have had MANY of our students playing in church and accompanying choirs.  What a joy for us directors to see the musical gifts of our students being put to such good use!  As parents, your encouragement of your young musicians is crucial to their growth and advancement.

Music is one of the few activities that can be enjoyed for a lifetime, both as a participant and as a spectator.  It is a passion that touches the emotional, physical, and intellectual senses.  As Martin Luther so beautifully stated, "Music makes people kinder, gentler, more staid and reasonable. I am strongly persuaded that after theology there is no art that can be placed on a level with music; for besides theology music is the only art capable of affording peace and joy of the heart."

End of the Year Activities and Events

Saturday, April 25 - Final Rehearsal of the year - the day will include:

  • 8:15 - 9:45 - Final Rehearsal for Cadet Band and Concert Winds
  • 9:45 - 10:30 - Band Awards!  We will be handing out various awards, including Medals for students who completed books during the second semester, WSMA Solo Medals, Attendance Awards, and the Director's Awards (2).  We will also have snacks and beverages provided compliments of the FVL Schools Band Parent Committee!  We would like all band students and parents to be in attendance if at all possible. Grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins (and other siblings) are also welcome!

Sunday, April 26 - FVL Schools Spring Band Concert

  • Concert begins at 6:00 PM in the FVL Auditorium.
  • Band members should arrive by 5:00 PM (Concert Black and White clothing), so we can hand out Concert Vests and Ties prior to warm up.  Cadet Band and Concert Winds will report to their regular rehearsal rooms at that time.
  • The students are encouraged to wear their medals for completing books to the concert!  It adds a special touch to the band uniform, and is a visible acknowledgement of a job well-done!
Information from our Photographer for Band Pictures

Dear Fox Valley Lutheran Middle School Band parents,

We enjoyed photographing your children on Saturday. If you did not get a chance to order, there is still time! Please use the link below to do so:  www.pinnaclepix.com
  • Online viewing
  • Select Fox Valley Lutheran Middle School Band.
  • Enter your email and the password: fvlband
Please contact me with any questions.
Christine Cedergren, Director of Business Development
Scanlan Studios
Pinnacle Group Photography
433 S. Commercial Street
Neenah, WI 54956
920-729-9013
Lessons Continue the week after the Concert at all schools

For all schools, lessons will still be given during the week following our concert (April 27 - April 30).  By that time, most schools would have been visited at least 24 days for lessons.

Due to school play rehearsals at St. Paul, Appleton, lessons given on Monday, May 4, but NOT on Tuesday, April 28

For Students Renting Instruments from FVL

Instruments that belong to FVL will be collected by Mr. Neujahr and Mr. Kramer when the last lesson is given for the year.  The instruments will be sent to Heid Music in Appleton for routine cleaning and maintenance.  If students are using an FVL instrument, and have need for it over the summer months (lessons, music camps or other summer musical activities), a parent must contact Mr. Neujahr and let him know.  An individual plan can then be worked out so that the instrument can still receive its annual check up at Heid Music and you can get it back when it is ready.  The best method of communication is email, at jneujahr@fvlhs.org.

Congratulations to the following students for recently completing lesson books:

We congratulate the following students who have completed a lesson book and moved on in our series "Standard of Excellence".  Our lesson series contains three books, 1 (Red), 2 (Blue), and 3 (Green).  We use the Rubank Advanced Method for students who advance beyond Book 3 fo the Standard of Excellence series.

Jonah Bixby, Grade 6, Mount Olive Appleton, French Horn - Completed 1
Ben Slominsky, Grade 5, Mount Olive Appleton, Trombone - Completed 1
Jacob Mindock, Grade 5, Mount Olive Appleton, Euphonium - Completed 1 
Paige Wudke, Grade 6, St. Paul Appleton, French Horn - Completed 1
Kurt Kubek, Grade 5, Immanuel Greenville, French Horn - Completed 1
Rebecca Eveland, Grade 5, Immanuel Greenville, Alto Saxophone - Completed 1
Karina Qualmann, Grade 5, Immanuel Greenville, Flute - Completed 1
Jerrett Schuette, Grade 6, Immanuel Greenville, Percussion - Completed 1
Kealy Doran, Grade 5, Riverview Appleton, Alto Saxophone - Completed 1
Jack Peters, Grade 5, Riverview Appleton, Trumpet - Completed 1
Leah Nolte, Grade 5, Riverview Appleton, French Horn - Completed 1
Christian Schmidt, Grade 5, Riverview Appleton, Trumpet - Completed 1
Autumn Shae, Grade 6, Riverview Appleton, Flute - Completed 1

Autumn Vah, Grade 6, St. Paul Appleton, Flute - Completed 2
Alyssa Keller, Grade 7, Bethlehem Hortonville, Clarinet - Completed 2
Alaina Thern, Grade 7, Immanuel Greenville, Flute - Completed 2

Emily Ellis, Grade 8, St. Paul Green Bay, Oboe - Completed Rubank Advanced Volume 1 for Oboe!

Beginning Band Student Open House Dates and Information

The Beginning Band Student Open House is an event where new and interested students can try out various instruments.  There is no obligation to attend.  If students and parents can not attend one of our Open House events, they are still able to join the FVL Schools Band Program next fall.  We will have many instruments set up for trial, including flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, French horn, trombone, baritone, tuba, and percussion kit.  Having all of these instruments on hand for students to try out will help them determine what instrument they would like to play.  It is a fun and exciting night for new students, as well as the parents!  Yes, it does get a little loud with all of the "music" being played, but seeing the smiles on the faces of the students and parents makes it all worth the effort!

This year we will be hosting two Beginning Band Open House events.  The times and locations are as follows:

Tuesday, May 19 - 6:00 - 7:00 PM
St. Mark Lutheran School
1167 Kenwood St
Green Bay, WI 54304

Thursday, May 21 - 6:00 - 8:00 PM
FVL Auditorium
5300 N Meade Street
Appleton, WI 54913

We are running two open house events in an effort to make it easier for parents and new students to attend.  We would really love to have more students from the Green Bay schools in our program, so we are adding the Green Bay event.

The Green Bay Open House will be held in the area between the church and the school.  You can use the parking lot with the entrance off of Oneida Street.

The FVL Open House was originally scheduled from 6:00 - 7:30, but there are a few area grade school graduations that night.  We will extend the time to 8:00 in an effort to make it possible for more students and parents to attend.

If parents and students can not make one of our Open House events, please contact me at jneujahr@fvlhs.org and I can assist you with any questions you may have.

Beginning Band Camp Dates and Times

We are looking forward to hosting our Third Annual Beginner Band Camp!  The camp will be held on Monday and Tuesday, August 10 and 11. We will begin activities at 9:00 AM and will conclude each day at 12:00 PM.

There is no cost to attend this camp! All we ask is that camp attendees have fun learning a new band instrument, and consider joining the FVL Schools Band Program for next school year.

More information on this camp will be available soon.  In the meantime, if you know of students who will be in grades 5 - 8 next year, you can help greatly by spreading the word!  Many of our FVL Schools Band students have younger siblings who will be eligible for band next year as well.  Get excited for the FVL Schools Band Program!

 

 

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Update for April 18

Rehearsal and Performance Schedule for the Remainer of the Year

Two Saturdays to go!  Band Awards Day coming soon!  One more Concert!  WOW!  The year has gone by very quickly, especially during this second semester.  We have accomplished much this year, including increased numbers in our program, as well as great progress in lessons and band rehearsals.  Thanks to all of our wonderful students and the parents for helping to make our program so valuable for our FVL Schools!

  • April 18 - Regular rehearsal and Band Picture Day (Info in the Director's Update for March 21 and also below in this Update)
  • April 25 - Final rehearsal and band awards (Awards to follow the rehearsal)
  • April 26 (Sunday) - Cadet Band and Concert Winds Spring Concert - 6:00 PM

Please note that there will be an ACT exam taking place at FVL on Saturday.  The ACT test-takers will also be using the Commons doors, so there will be additional traffic in the parking lot and the Commons entrance.  All testing rooms will be in the Academic area of the school, so our rehearsal and photos will not interfere with the ACT exam.  We are expecting more than 150 students from northeast Wisconsin taking the test on Saturday.  The Commons entrance will be open by 7:15 AM for the arrival of the ACT exam takers.  Mr. Alan Nolte will be unlocking doors at that time, and will also lock up the building following the ACT exam, which will not conclude until approximately 1:30 PM.

Band Picture Day on Saturday, April 18

As was previously noted, this coming Saturday will be our band picture day.  Information has been previously posted for this day, so please refer to the Update from March 21 for the following information:

Dress for the Day - students should wear their Concert Black and White to rehearsal
Photographer information, including an Online Pre-Order form for picture packages

We will be taking group photos, as well as individual student photos.  It will also be possible to have siblings in the same photo, even if they are in different bands.  Please - if siblings would like to have pictures taken together, simply notify the director (Mr. Kramer or Mrs. Nogar) at the start of the day so that they are aware and can accommodate your request.

The pictures will be taken on the FVL Auditorium Stage.  We will have choir risers set up for the group photos, and individual "glamour shots" will also be done on the stage.

We will be taking the Cadet Band group photo first, followed by the Cadet Band individual photos.  Then we will take the Concert Winds photo, followed by the Concert Winds individual photos.

WSMA Concert Festival Wrap

I want to begin by thanking our parents and teachers for coordinating the car pools to and from our grade schools on April 1!  We had very close to 100% attendance that day, with only a few absent due to illness. Our students are also to be commended for their excellent dress!  It was very impressive to see students of that age taking the time and effort to look fantastic for a performance such as this.  Many of our young gentlemen were sporting dress shirts and ties, and our young ladies looked very nice in their dress slacks, skirts, and dresses.

We had very good ratings on the day as well.  Two of the adjudicators awarded us with a "II" and one adjudicator awarded our band with a "I".  Considering our relative lack of rehearsal time, our students performed admirably!  With only 2 or 3 rehearsals a month to prepare literature, we have a slight disadvantage over other middle school bands who have the luxury of 2 to 3 rehearsals a WEEK!  Having said that, our students take it upon themselves to rehearse their music outside of our Saturday rehearsal time, and our few group rehearsals are very productive.  Thanks again to our musicians for their ability to do the very best in the time that we have together.  Thanks kids!

Here are a few comments from the adjudicator rubric forms:

  • You have worked very hard on balance.  Many places it's excellent!
  • A very nice looking ensemble.  Very attentive and working hard to do well.
  • Good control of ensemble sound.  Very good percussion - not overpowering.
  • Your attention to your director is great.  Your behavior was very good for young musicians!

Other general comments include encouragement to use more dynamics, as well as work on ensemble intonation.  The three adjudicators were very impressed with our group and what they are able to accomplish in so few rehearsals.  All in all, it was a very good day for our Concert Winds!

Congratulations to the following students for recently completing lesson books:

We congratulate the following students who have completed a lesson book and moved on in our series "Standard of Excellence".  Our lesson series contains three books, 1 (Red), 2 (Blue), and 3 (Green).  We use the Rubank Advanced Method for students who advance beyond Book 3 fo the Standard of Excellence series.

Jackson Becker, Grade 5, St. Paul Appleton, Alto Saxophone - Completed 1
Erin Greshay, Grade 7, Riverview Appleton, Trumpet - Completed 2
Makenna Menting, Grade 5, Riverview, Appleton, Trumpet, Completed 1
Connor Lynch, Grade 7, New Hope Christian, Trombone, Completed 3

LESSON REMINDER - Mr. Neujahr will not be giving lessons this week, April 13 - 17.

Mr. and Mrs. Neujahr and daughter Johanna will be traveling to Columbus, Georgia, which is the home of US Army Fort Benning. Son Joshua will be graduating from Army Basic Training this week.  A bit more info about this trip was given in the Update for March 28.

Unfortunately, this also means that I will not be here for picture day this coming Saturday.  Our flight does not return until later on Saturday evening.

Mr. Kramer WILL be giving lessons as normal during the week of April 13 - 17.  We are nearing the 24th lesson at every school, so all students will receive lessons the last two weeks of April.  Depending on each school's number of lessons, some schools may be visited yet the first week of May.

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