Information about joining the band program, including fees, selecting an instrument, and instrument hire is provided to parents and carers of Year 2 students, usually in Term 3 or 4. Parents and carers are then asked to register their child’s interest and instrument preferences. The band committee endeavours to issue instruments in Term 1 of the following year.
There are several bands of incremental standard and each band has weekly rehearsals. Students in the program also have instrument lessons which are scheduled during school hours. Students start in the training band, which usually begins rehearsals in Term 2 or 3.
The bands perform regularly at school assemblies, the ‘Big Gig’ (twice a year) and at various external events.
Costs to participants include a one-off joining fee, and fees each term for instrument hire (if required), band rehearsal, and instrument lessons.
The band program relies on the help of parent volunteers as it is funded primarily by participant fees and fundraising events.
Joining the band
Students from Years 2 to 5 are invited to register their interest in joining the band program at the start of Term 4.
To allow allocation of instruments and tutors, the cut off for enrolment is Week 5 of Term 1. Students who can play an instrument already (e.g. students transferring from other schools) may audition to join at other times of the year. 'Expression of interest' forms are available from the office during Term 4.
There are several opportunities to find out about the band program and the instrument selection process before a student joins.
The band conductor and tutors review the completed forms and arrange for the students to meet with a tutor during school hours to try out the instruments. During this session, the tutor makes a recommendation of an instrument that will best suit the child. Tutors consider a number of factors, but for bigger instruments, this commonly includes whether a child has long enough arms to reach down to certain notes.
Issue of instruments
The Band Committee endeavours to issue instruments in Term 1 of the following year. Students and parents are required to attend an instrument maintenance and Information evening, where students are issued with their instruments, shown how to look after them, receive their lesson books and band folders and get to meet their tutors.