Should They Be In Band?

Topics and polls that cover the overall marching band activity

Moderators: malletphreak, Hostrauser, instrumental director, Trumpet Man 05

User avatar
Posts: 541
Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2002 11:59 pm
Location: usc

Post by TrumpetsRule17 » Tue Nov 11, 2003 1:13 am

well i think that both has its pros and cons
by letting everyone that wants to be in band be in band, people who have natural talents r discovered. people who would never have joined band can experience the fun. plus, field shows often require a group effort that can only be created by having everyone in

However, i think it would be nice to have auditions because it would give us an idea of who needs extra help and stuff

at arcadia, we have an audition for parade band but let everyone be on the field for competitions
USC c/o 08
Arcadia Band vp 03-04
Arcadia Trumpet sl 03-04
Arcadia c/o2004

Section Leader
Section Leader
Posts: 763
Joined: Sun Dec 08, 2002 8:04 pm

Post by BttrDrummerThanU » Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:12 am

Now, I have two thoughts on this subject. And they don't relate to just marching band. It's any performing unit.

1) Fact 1: Band is a performance activity (unlike math)

In response the person that said "If someone's bad at math, we're not going to kick them out"... Well, the fact is that Math is not a team sport/activity. 30 kids can sit in a room and do their homework. All the students can do their homework, takes tests. Some get A's, some get F's. But the ones that get F's do not affect the ones that get A's. Why, because math is an independant academic area. Is student does his/her own work and is responsible for his/her own work. If one kid in a math class fails, it's not going to affect the rest of the class.

Now lets put this into the musical performance world. A ensemble of 40 musicians. They can all know their parts perfectly. All it takes is one person to goof around, not know what they are doing, or not care...and it effects the entire performance. This could be a wrong note, horrible intonation, wrong entrances, (or in a color guard world....drops, not being together). One person can ruin a performance for the entire ensemble.

So that is one reason we can't allow everybody to be a part of our "performing ensembles" The ones that don't care or the ones that don't try will ruin it

2) Every student is entitled to a music education

Fine by me.....but, if there is a student who doesn't know his/her stuff (be it her spots in the show, his parade march music, his rifle work) i'm not going to let that person perform and ruin the show. They can get a "musical education" in the classroom. In the classroom they can make mistakes or whatever. But i will not let one student ruin or embarrass the ensemble.

For example...i have an ensemble right now. In that ensemble is a trumpet player (or i should say trumpet holder) who does absolultely nothing. He is there because mom wanted him and is forcing him to take band. he does not enjoy it, he never practices and is maintaing a steady F. Do I care.....not really. WHY you ask? because i give my students every opportunity to get help. Some of them just dont care. So he sits there, holding his trumpet, not trying just staring at the ceiling. He's not causing problems, not causing a disturbance. But when it comes time to perform at the concert, he must know his music if he wants to walk on stage. A performance is a chance to show off what you've prepared. If nothing is prepared, you aint walking out there.

So here's my point..

Auditions: Yes a good idea for performing and high level ensembles (wind ensembles, marching bands, etc.)

Every school has (or should have) a lower ensemble, usually concert band/beginning band, etc..... If a student does not have the skills to get into the auditioned group, there should be another place for him/her to hone his/her skills until he/she is ready.

The only reason a student should be denied a musical education is just a pure, outright discipline problem. Other than that, there should be a class suited for their ability level.

thats all


User avatar
New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2003 12:28 pm
Location: somewhere over the rainbow

my solution....

Post by BHC123 » Tue Nov 11, 2003 9:39 am

i believe or corporal punishment....mwhhaha :twisted: ....hehe jk but i would really like to on the stupid ones that waste my time and their time on the field not giving a crap.
Our Greatest Glory Lies Not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall

did u hear what happened in mexico today??
2 cars crashed and 500 ppl died!!

User avatar
alto s@x 87
New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 13
Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2003 8:42 am
Location: Upland, CA

Post by alto s@x 87 » Tue Nov 11, 2003 11:23 am

Responding to RifleLova, Upland does have auditions for guard but not for band. This year we had like 70 or 80 people try out for guard so not everyone that tried out got a spot. That number has dropped to about 55 now, including all the girls that dropped out mid-season.
freaky dutch boy

Upland High School
Class of '06

New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 59
Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2003 9:16 am
Location: Palmdale, CA

really slow people...

Post by phlpngeek04 » Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:13 pm

in our band we have a couple of people who just do not know how to either march, play or just dont know how to do both at the same time. we try to help them but they just seem to be fed up with people telling them to do this or to do that. :x i say if you cant do the thing your told the first 15 times its said to you, maybe you should pick another activity. some of the older members try to help but for some reason they just dont get it. :frustrated: the one of the people i am talking about is an older member to the corp yet she cant keep her instrument up. she plays flute. we have this thing about keeping the flute parallel to the ground and about half the flute line is too lazy to do that. is it really that hard to keep your flute up for more than 10 seconds?!!! :frustrated: that just gets on my nerves. another one of the upperclassmen plays alto sax. she cant play her instrument while marching or when shes in the spotlight. and... she cant march at all. we do marching basics every day and she cant do it and it doesnt even look like shes trying at all. she just walks. we tell her to march but she says shes trying and then starts walking to her next set. im sorry but there are some people who have to be kicked out of marching band. if they cant do it the first time thats a different issue. but if they cant do it throughout the whole year they should be able to march at competitions. maybe at football games and stuff like that but not at competitions. they cost us points and the people who want to get better cant because 'you are only as strong as your weakest player'. so the weakest players need to find another thing to do other than marching band. sorry for all the people who read my post. i just had to let off some steam.
Cpl Fontilara
Currently at MCAS Miramar, San Diego, CA

User avatar
Grand PooBah
Grand PooBah
Posts: 3510
Joined: Fri Aug 08, 2003 5:27 pm
Location: Yuma, Arizona

Post by formermarcher » Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:17 pm

Although understandable, this isn't the best place to let off some steam.

However, I think you hit alot of points on the head, that some other people might be struggling with.
"It is your destiny to be the leader who uses this event to rally a city, a nation...a world"

"Its not what you do or what you say, but HOW you do it that matters the most"

UC: Riverside, Class Of 2007

User avatar
Posts: 112
Joined: Tue Apr 22, 2003 9:43 am
Location: CA

Good Point

Post by Ace » Tue Nov 11, 2003 8:09 pm

I don't think you should have to audition for marching band. If someone wants to do something they want and it won't hurt others then by all means let them. So what if it hurts your score, your not performing for points, your their to entertain and for experience. Another thing that ticks me off is when upper class men are extremely good in both playing and marching but instead of helping others to improve they just sit around and mess around and act all stuck up to the lower classmen. :evil:
My Keys
02'-03' Synth
03'-04 Caliope

Poly PIT

New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 62
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2003 8:27 pm
Location: Murrieta


Post by Coach » Tue Nov 11, 2003 9:25 pm

Auditions are thought about with such a narrow view. I am all for auditions. As a previous post was made compareing marching band and math. It is like compareing lettuce and grapes. There is no relation between both. Band in general is a non academic class which in turn is not required to graduate from California high schools. There are many other options to meet your performing arts requirments. If the attitude is not there, with my experience peer pressure has worked well enough to get people to quit. If all else fails the teacher/administrator holds the ultimate decision in getting rid of the students.

Getting back to the audition part of the topic, I feel people need to broaden their thoughts on the process. Auditions should be held with the same process as a job interview. Not only does the employer care about your experience you have to carry out the task asked, but is also interested in attitude, ability to work with others, reliable, self driven, and above all your desire to want to learn new things. Auditions in my opinion should be held in the same manner.

Over the course of the past 18 or so years I have heard all excuses as to why they are in band. The problem is there are to many wrong reasons. It is now time for the directors to step to the plate and not allow such problems occur. With all the prerequisites in the interview list above, these are the ingredients
needed to start the beginnings of a quality music program. Some say it should not be the choice of the teacher to kick out someone from the program, but personally I am much more interested in a small program with quality musicians with great attitudes then a program with large numbers and the lack of desire to be great musicians. As the old saying goes 1 sour apple rots the bunch.
Be the Best YOU can be,
Because YOU can!

Posts: 515
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2002 11:57 pm


Post by BlueStarMom » Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:58 pm

At JW North the Blue Star Regiment, a.k.a. the BSR incoming freshman have a mini band camp. Then all new and returning members have a 2 week band camp together in August. They learn marching, the colorguard and drill team also learn drill. However, there are section leaders. The older BSR members adopt an incoming freshman, as a "band buddy". They even exchange gifts before competitions. There is encouragement to work hard, and also to have fun afterwards.

Due to attrition some musicians may drop out for whatever reason. The band director may decide a certain musician does not want to be there, and encourage them to pursue some other interest other than band. There can be multiple reasons. You should give any individual who is interested a chance to be in band. By the way, the colorguard and drill team do have tryouts.
Blue Star Regiment
You'll Never Walk Alone

User avatar
Support Staff
Support Staff
Posts: 1158
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2002 5:59 pm
Location: Sunnyvale, CA

Re: Auditions

Post by guardthepiccolo » Fri Nov 14, 2003 9:54 pm

jcys wrote:

We have probably, to my knowledge, one of the few "no audition" color guards. Any kid can sign up. We take them all, including what schools call "special" kids..which is meaningless to us, because they may struggle in english doesn't mean they aren't wonderfully talented in color guard. Some people may say this results in "standard" performances..and compared to some maybe so, but we are still usually in the top 10, and this year these girls have won 1st place at everything they have been at. And these kids have 1 color guard instructor the see only twice a week for ONE hour. The rest is all done by the captains.


We also have a no-audition colorguard. Anyone can join, and most people are motivated to do their best and advance really quickly:) Our band is no-audition also, and I agree with JCYS in the fact that it should be an educational experience. Unlike sports, band is a class(usually) and IMO, is here to enrich students with art appretiation, as well as developing many skills that are very useful in this world. I do think it's ok to audition people into band if there is also a class that does not require audition so that someone who wants to be in band still has the opportunity. I do not believe that people should be told that they can't be in band because it is truly a learning experience, and it also gives the less fortunate a chance to improve.(Thoughts apply to K-12 music programs in schools)
Benicia High School C/O '05
Colorguard Instructor

User avatar
New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue Nov 26, 2002 5:46 pm
Location: Majestic Corps [KHS]

Post by BabySloth » Sat Nov 15, 2003 12:24 pm

Hmm....auditions or no auditions....

As many people have previously stated, it really depends on how you view things. I mean, everyone should definetely be entitled to being in band, but if the person's heart isn't in it, then that is a different story. If people are in band to just get the PE credits and hang in the back of the band room during practice, then they shouldn't be wasting the time of all the people who actually want to be there. One solution to this might be to have a JV marching band.
That sounds odd, I know, but all the people who wanted just to be in band to get the credit and hang with their friends could be in the JV band, and then you could audition up into the Varsity band [i.e.- the band that competes in all of the high-end field and street competitions]. I'm not sure if there are any schools who already do this, but if you're in a school that does have a JV and a varsity band, I'd love to hear how that works out.
If more schools would adopt that, then it might lessen the tension between the people who pull their weight and the people who don't.

Just a thought.
"I'm not really the famous one. I just sit in the back and hit things." - Will Champion on being a drummer

User avatar
New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2003 1:47 pm

Post by PricklyPearPeople4meandU » Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:00 pm

this year we got a few new freshies in our section and they all started out fine. of course they werent very good at first and they didnt get the idea of marcing but after a while they all caught on. now i could understand if they were having troubles keeping on time and on the right foot at first, but past halfway through our season they should at least be able to be in step! well one of the girls in my section just couldnt do it. she kept getting off tempo, wrong foot, skuffling her feet, rocking back and forth, etc...the list went on forever. our band director asked me to help her privatly with another senior outside of band and so i did. she didnt seem to make any improvement AT ALL. :frustrated: i was so frustrated and i seriously wanted to BOOT HER OUT OF BAND. but of course thats not an opption so we kept working with her and amazingly she got better! not very good, but still MUCH better. and she also started having fun. at the end of our season i was sooooooo proud for taking this not-very-good-at-all freshie and turning her into a way-better-than-she-was/could-have-been marcher!
so yeah, even tho auditions for marching band seem lke a super idea, its also real great and rewarding to work with the peeps you want out and help them get better...if that makes any sense...oh well :lol:
-@ and *# forever!!! Pineapple knows what i mean.
What are Prickly Pear People? Who knows, theyre a fruit of my imagination.
~So follow, the leader down, and swallow ur pride and drown.~
~This is a forgery, this is a forgery...~

User avatar
New Recruit
New Recruit
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Nov 11, 2003 12:22 pm
Location: benicia

Post by GongGoddess » Mon Nov 17, 2003 1:42 am

I honestly beleive that it takes more then an ability to play well to be in band. There are kids in our wind ensemble who are lazy and have awful attitudes and are only there because they play there instrument well. We have kids who work the behinds off in symphonic band but aren't given the opportunity to shine in wind ensemble, because we need strong players in S Band and because the number of musicians has to be even in both bands. i think a kid has to have some talent a good attitude and at least a year of HIGH SCHOOL band under their sleeve before being placed into wind ensemble unless they are desperate for specific instrument. I dont know but i think there needs to be more then a short little audition to determine if a kid is ready for an advanced musical class of anykind.
Dont touch me there your not a priest...

but I'm his illigatimate love child

Post Reply