Friday, November 27, 2009

Field Show 2010

The band trip to Fairfield was a great experience for all the Cougar Band. It provided new insight for the design of the 2010 contest field show. I have been giving a lot of thought to the careful selection of music for next season. Recently I have enjoyed the music of Beethoven. Check out some cool Beethoven-esque field music - scroll to "Music of Beethoven" then click to listen.

The Tournament of Champions featured many fine groups playing music that was recognizable to the audience; much of it was classical music themes in powerful musical arrangements for the modern field band.

I am enjoying a day continuing to settle into our new house in Spanish Springs. Still full from yesterday! Lots of leftover turkey, etc.! Trying to find the box with Christmas lights...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

California Here We Come!

Right back where we started from...

Northern California CHAMPIONSHIPS are held annually at Fairfield High School - home of the Scarlet Brigade - in Fairfield, California.

The Cougar Band will finish the marching season today! Under cool, clear skies the band members will work for a couple of hours, load charter buses, travel to Fairfield, warm-up, compete, and finally watch some of the best bands in northern California. It will be a fun day of friendships.

I plan on having fun! Each band member will return home - very early in the AM (about 3am) - with the marching season behind them and many memories to carry into their lives.

Best wishes for a successful day to each Cougar Band member (and all the parents, staff, and supporters!)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Last Evening Practice in the Can!

That's it! The final evening practice for the Cougar Band marching season 2009 is over, done, finished, complete, gone. Lot's of cleaning was the main focus of this week and the show will reflect this effort in a positive way at Fairfield High School on Saturday, Nov 21st - this Saturday.

As the season comes to a close the Cougar Band can rest assured that the load of work has been worth the great effort. Each performance has been better than the performance before. I am so pleased with the progress of the Cougar Band in this last week.

Now let's go to the "Tournament of Champions" at Fairfield, CA and have a blast entertaining a big crowd. :-)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

New Office for Music Teachers

Early on Saturday morning - I had a day-dream. My desk was moved so I could enjoy the beautiful vista of Spanish Springs valley. This prompted a major interior decorating update to the music office at SSHS. Perhaps, for the first time in many years (ever?), the furniture has been rearranged. Many old boxes and accumulated stuff was discarded. Thanks to the students that helped make this happen. :-)

Band Day - Big Bucks!

Thanks to the community of Spanish Springs. Without the generous donations of the many families and individuals that supported the Cougar Band members on Saturday, Nov. 14th - Band Day - the Cougar Band would not have an additional $6,800 plus change.

I am pleased to announce a contest to guess the exact amount of change - actual coins - gathered on band day. The winning Cougar Band member will receive Movie Tickets. Good luck!

Now, on with the last two practices and final performance of the "Watches of the Night" field show at Fairfield High School (CA).

p.s. I slept early and long on Saturday night. My feet hurt! Cry baby. lol

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans' Day Parade

A good time for the Cougar Band: 11th month, 11th day, 11th hour in Downtown Reno.

The Cougar Band marched and played to the huge crowd lining Virginia Street. Without cases, hat boxes, or pit/props the band quickly loaded and returned to SSHS well ahead of schedule.

Great job Cougars! I love to support the Veterans of the USA at this annual event.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

NEW Web Address

Go to rather than "sshs"cougarband dot org. The reason for the change is a bit complicated and confusing. The main reason I sought a change was the increase in online storage space for band pictures, images, and music. The new site host allows for 1000 TIMES MORE SPACE. And for about 1/4 the cost. Weird how that works sometimes.

Please note that cougar bands is plural in the new web address. This reflects the presence of multiple ensembles at SSHS including jazz band, concert band, wind ensemble, and - of course - the Cougar Marching Band.

Pit Equipment - Arrives Tomorrow

The Sound System for the Pit percussion is schedule to be delivered to SSHS on Monday - tomorrow. This equipment will allow the pit instruments to be musically balanced between each other as well as projected to a wider audience.

The sound system will also allow wind instruments to be heard through the use of individual wireless microphones.

I am excited about this addition to the Cougar Band inventory.

Veteran Parade: This Wednesday!

11/11 is always Veterans' Day in the USA. The Cougar Band will proudly support our troops and vets of all wars this Wednesday at the annual Veteran Parade in downtown Reno.

This performance will be in full uniform and include all band members. Pit performers will play alternate instruments (cymbals, toys, or wind instrument - if they play one).

The parade begins at the 11th hour (of course, Google that if you don't know why). Note: the US Congress says that "Veterans' Day" is correct; attributive rather than possessive.)

NV State Band Championships

Congratulations to the Cougar Band: a successful far the best of the season.

I am sincerely proud of the progress and achievement presented to the band fans at UNR on Saturday, 11/7. The "Watches of the Night" show was amazing. Great job. Thanks to the many parents that made it all work (food, props, moving equipment, chaperoning, etc.).

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

NV State Band Champs this Sat.

This week is filled with band rehearsal, practices, PlayOff football game!, and the Nevada State Marching Band Championships @ UNR.

Let's work hard to make a great showing at the State Championship band contest.

Band Fees - Keep 'em Coming!

Thank you to all the many families that have contributed BandFees to the Cougar Band this year. The result is I was able to process payment for the amazing staff that has guided the Cougar Band toward continued improvements.

Go Cougars!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Nevada State Band Championships!

This week is THE week for the Nevada State Band Championships. This annual event takes place at Mackay Stadium on the campus of UNR on Sat. 11/7. Each marching band in Northern Nevada will strut-their-stuff on the college field for a big crowd of band fans.

The Cougar Band had an awesome rehearsal Monday evening (11/2) of this important week of band rehearsals and performances. After a big win - scoring 91.5 - at Carson High on 10/31, the Cougar Band members are ready to show the world on an ever-improving musical/visual package.

With the added home football game this Friday (11/6) - the first ever Playoff Football game hosted at SSHS - the band will enjoy an additional opportunity to entertain Cougar Football fans with stands tunes and the all-important field show "Watches of the Night".

Some parents were thrilled to see the Cougar Band outscore Elko at the Carson show last Saturday. I am proud that the band placed 2nd overall. Although there is not an "official" ranking of bands, it is clear that the Cougar band has placed 2nd behind McQueen and ahead of all other bands in northern Nevada. Let's keep closing the gap with consistent improvement! Go Cougars!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Cougar Band Earns 91.5 at Carson

The Cougar Band was one of only two bands to receive a score in the 90's on Saturday, October 31st at the annual Nevada Day Championsihp at Carson High. The judges immediately understood the "passage of time" concept and enjoyed the effective display of pageantry. The ensemble sounds of the band have improved since the contest at Galena High; the judges rewarded the band accordingly.

Thanks to a dedicated group of volunteer parents the band was able to move all equipment to Carson and back to SSHS in a timely manner. The Cougar Band has an awesome parent booster group and talented design and technical staff. The success of the Cougar Band is due to this pool of wonderful volunteers and staff.

Highlights of the show performance included a very smooth "on and off" of the pit and props. Thanks Dads! Also, the excellent work of all three drum majors: getting "outside the box" (Michelle), leading/conducting/moving props (Stephanie), and conducting/playing-trombone (Quinton). The drum majors will continue to promote excellence - you can be sure - as the season moves forward. The staff provided excellence in preparation at SSHS and Carson.

It was a great pleasure to see the Cougar Band rewarded with a score placing them above all the other bands - including Elko, Douglas, Reed - excepting McQueen. We will keep building a better band. McQueen can see us in the we come.