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									                      MUSIC TITANS                              “The Power of Music”
                      Music Directors: Steve Thompson & Rick Branswell www.titansmusic.com
                      21250 42 Avenue
                      Langley, British Columbia V3A 8K6
                      Mr. T‟s Cell: 778-808-4955

June 15, 2010

Dear Band Parents and Students:

This letter is full of information about the Grade 7 Band Program which is the music offering for Grade 7 at our school. Mr.
Steve Thompson and Mr. Rick Branswell teach the music program from grade 7 to 12 at Langley Fundamental Middle and
Secondary School. We look forward to teaching the Grade 7 Band next year. Learning a band instrument can be very fun,
challenging and rewarding!

Please read this letter through carefully so you and your child can get the best start on a band instrument this coming year.

Here are some important dates to consider in preparation for band:

Information & Instrument Trials          Tuesday June 15 afternoon and Wednesday to Friday at lunch and after school
     If you have questions and would like to try out several band instruments this week, I will be in the Music Room at
       lunch time and after school on Wednesday to Friday June 16-18 from 2:00-3:30 pm. On Tuesday (today) the
       students will be trying instruments under our guidance.

        You do not have to have an appointment; just drop in any time on Wednesday June 16, Tuesday June 16 or
        Wednesday June 17 between 2:30-4:30 pm for about 15-20 minutes to try out the instruments again and ask
        questions. If the scheduled times do not work for you, please e-mail or phone me to make other arrangements.

Instrument Choice                        By Friday June 18th
     We need to know your likely instrument choice by Friday June 18th (or earlier). Please send in the form to your
       classroom teacher and I will collect them. You may also e-mail me at sthompson@sd35.bc.ca or
       titansmusic@gmail.com or call Mr. Thompson’s cell phone 778-808-4955 with your:
                                              st    nd
                NAME, PHONE NUMBER, 1 & 2                INSTRUMENT CHOICES, E-MAIL

Renting an Instrument                    End of July to mid August
    Long & McQuade Music and Tom Lee Music in Langley have informed me that the best time to rent instruments is
       late July to mid August when they have their rental stock in and before the crazy rush that happens at the end of the
       summer and beginning of the school year. Of course you can rent instruments at any time, but they tell me that this
       time period is best. Please read through the information in the letter regarding instrument choice and the attached
       brochures from Tom Lee and Long & McQuade (although they are outdated). Please rent or purchase from a
       reputable music dealer, not a „big box‟ store. The cheap instruments carried by non-music stores do not
       work well and they do not have support for repairs or maintenance.

Beginning Band Workshop                 9:30 am – 12 noon, Saturday, September 18 @ LSS
    All beginning students must attend for their first lesson which will cover proper assembly and care of your
       instrument, the playing basics and your first sounds. I realize that many students will try their instruments out over
       the summer, but this is a valuable morning session which they should not miss, taught by teachers from around
       Langley who specialize on these instruments.
Tom Lee Music (604-532-8303) and Long & McQuade Music (604-530-8704) provide similar instrument rental options.
Read through the attached brochures and call the stores or me (cell 778-808-4955) if you have any questions. Here is what
you will receive with your rental:
          Good quality used or new instruments guaranteed
          free care & maintenance supplies and music folder
          free general maintenance (I also highly recommend theft & damage insurance for $1 per month.)
Please rent or purchase from a reputable music dealer, not a „big box‟ store. The cheap instruments carried by
non-music stores do not work well and they do not have support for repairs or maintenance.

You should also buy:
        A folding music stand (about $10) for home practice
        Standard of Excellence Enhanced (plus CDs) for your chosen instrument (about $10)
        1 box of Rico Royal reeds for clarinet/sax players (must be #2.5 strength)
What You Can Expect in Band
You will be doing more than 'learning to play the clarinet': you will be starting a musical journey that could lead you into a
whole new exciting world! Graduates of my music program remember their music classes as a place to meet and make
lifelong friends, explore the artistic side of life, build self confidence through performing for audiences, travel with bands and
choirs, and meet the challenge and discipline it takes to learn a musical instrument. I have found that those who become
involved in music excel academically, develop positive attitudes and associate with other students with a similar mind-set
and goals.
Beginning Band Course Goal and Content:
To provide, through basic instruction in instrumental technique and musical development, the opportunity for success in
instrumental studies in future years.
The course content will include: instrument and hand position; posture; breathing; embouchure; articulation; music
reading; fingerings; concert pitch; major and chromatic scales; Band Concepts (balance, intonation, blend, instrumentation,
dynamics, style, interpretation); Musical Concepts (beat and meter, pulse, tempo, listening abilities, phrasing); Rehearsal
and Home Practice Disciplines (warm-ups, marking of music, following a conductor, balancing technical and performance
practice); instrument care and maintenance; conducting an ensemble; music theory.
Parents will need to supply the following:
1) The supplies mentioned above: instrument, supplies, book, and music stand
4) Support for their child in the form of positive encouragement and monitoring home practice.
5) A commitment to their child's studies for the full school year
Students will need to supply the following:
1) A great attitude.
2) A willingness to learn.
3) A commitment to their instrumental studies & practice for the full school year.
Instrumental Selection
When selecting an instrument, please consider the following.
       Physical         - formation of teeth and lips required to succeed on the desired instrument
       Educational      - the required instruments for a successful beginning ensemble
       Financial        - the rental cost of some instruments is prohibitive.
Suggested beginning instruments:
             FLUTE          CLARINET                       TRUMPET                   TROMBONE
Other instruments are possible, however they may be costly or unavailable to rent/buy or more difficult for a beginning player
to learn. Those who wish to play percussion/drums should first play another instrument for one year to develop music
reading skills. Electric Bass is not a band instrument but is sometimes used to substitute for tuba. Please contact me if
you have percussion/drums or bass in mind. Anyone desiring to play saxophone (costly to rent) or oboe (challenging to
play) should begin on clarinet or flute to develop good technique and tone and then switch later on. Students wishing to play
the French horn should first begin on the trumpet. Most rent-to-own policies allow you to trade in for another instrument if a
student changes their mind.
After discussing this letter with your child, We ask that you e-mail us regarding your instrument choice and any questions
you may have. Please attend one of the information and instrument try-out sessions mentioned above.

Steve Thompson & Rick Branswell, Music Teachers
e-mail sthompson@sd35.bc.ca or titansmusic@gmail.com cell: 778-808-4955 (please try e-mail first before calling my cell)
Grade 7 Band Instrument Choice
                Please Return By Friday June 18th (or earlier)
(We are creating a database with this information for our own records)

NAME: ________________________________________

PARENTS’ NAMES: ______________________________________

CLASSROOM TEACHER/DIVISION (circle) Brathwaite Ehman Simonetto/Baxfield

PHONE: ___________________ CELL or ALTERNATE PHONE: _________________

PARENT E-MAIL:         _____________________________________

STUDENT E-MAIL:        _____________________________________

Please briefly describe your musical experience (instruments, lessons, etc…):

INSTRUMENT CHOICE: (final choice subject to the approval of the band teacher)

   1st CHOICE: ______________________

   2nd CHOICE: ______________________


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