Orchestra

Audition for 2021/22 Chamber Orchestra!

Audition materials will be available in late-February 2021 and will be held in March. All current string students in grades 9-10 are encouraged to audition! Find answers to FAQs below:

WHAT DO I DO FOR THE JANUARY REGISTRATION?

  • The current Skyward registration only gives you one option--go with that! Your schedule will be adjusted after the audition process in March.

    • Current Freshman, register for Concert Orchestra

    • Current Sophomores and Juniors, register for Chamber Orchestra

    • Current 8th Grade, register for Concert Orchestra

WHAT HAPPENS IF I AM REGISTERED FOR CONCERT ORCHESTRA AND I MAKE CHAMBER ORCHESTRA? WHAT DO I DO FOR MY REGISTRATION IN MARCH?

  • Nothing to do. Mrs. H will work with the guidance department to get your schedule re-arranged. If there is a conflict (which is rare), the guidance department will contact you and go from there.

  • Same thing if you are registered for Chamber Orchestra and don't audition. Mrs. H will contact guidance and have your class changed to Concert Orchestra.

CAN I BE IN CHAMBER ORCHESTRA WITHOUT AUDITIONING?

  • The simple answer is no, however there is one exception for the 2021/22 school year.

    • All current students in grades 9/10 need to audition. Audition materials will include literature previously performed by Chamber Orchestra and a short sight-reading element. All students will be given the same amount of time to prepare for the audition.

    • Auditions will be submitted via video.

      • This also means you can take the time to submit your best work.

  • The exception for the 2021/22 school year is that all current Juniors enrolled in this class do not need to audition. They are already in Chamber Orchestra and will be able to stay for their Senior year. If a current Junior would prefer to move to Concert Orchestra, please reach out to Mrs. H and she will help you on an individual basis.

WHAT ABOUT CURRENT 8TH GRADE STUDENTS?

  • All current 8th grade students will enroll in Concert Orchestra.

  • Students are not eligible to audition for Chamber Orchestra until the spring of their Freshman year.

    • This is consistent with the rest of the music department at WHS.

HOW TO I ENROLL TO BE IN MULTIPLE MUSIC CLASSES? I SING OR PLAY A BAND INSTRUMENT.

  • We are so pleased to have the unique ability to have students enrolled in more than one music performance class at WHS. We purposefully have our performance classes meet during the same hours so students can share. If you enroll to be in multiple music classes, you will alternate days throughout the week. For example: Orchestra Monday, Choir Tuesday, Orchestra Wed, Choir Thurs, Orchestra Fri, and then the next week Choir Mon, etc...We also work together as a staff to make sure during a performance week, you are attending that class all week to prepare and be comfortable in the performance.

  • If you are interested in enrolling in multiple music classes please register for Shared Music.

    • Concert Orchestra students are in INTERMEDIATE SHARED MUSIC.

    • Chamber Orchestra students are in ADVANCED SHARED MUSIC.

I AM IN CONCERT ORCHESTRA AND WANT TO TAKE ORCHESTRA DAILY FOR TRI 2/3.

  • Concert Orchestra, as with it's intermediate ensemble equivilants in choir and band, meets on alternating days during Tri's 2 and 3. The group is divided based upon your schedule into a Day 1 ensemble and Day 2. The classes run opposite Health and Financial Literacy, which are both required to graduate at WHS. You may choose to take these classes over the summer or online and be available for daily Orchestra classes.

  • If this is the case, please register for INTERMERDIATE SHARED MUSIC.

  • Chamber Orchestra meets daily for 3 trimesters.

WHY THE CHANGE?

  • This has been in the works for several years and in the final planning stages since early 2019. We decided to move ahead as planned--we are ready.

  • Historically the orchestra program in Watertown was quite small. In 2020, there were only approximately 55 students enrolled in grades 6-12 and the orchestra was struggling. The district invested in the program and hired Mark Leiser that year to turn things around. The program grew and had over 100 students enrolled when he retired. Mrs. H has worked diligently to keep the ship moving forward and we now have the enrollment numbers to support such a change. The HS only moved to 2 orchestras in the last few years, having out grown their classroom. The program overall has increased, requiring the hiring of another instructor for RMS, Ms. Eggerichs. The plan has been all along to mirror our successful band and choir programs once the change to multi-level ensembles was stable. Even in this unprecedented year the program remains strong and is ready to join the ranks with the rest of the department.

Concert Orchestra

Concert Orchestra is an intermediate group where students develop the skills necessary to move towards our advanced group. Concert Orchestra is open to students in grades 9-12. Students need to have prior string experience from advanced beginner to early intermediate, either from participating in a prior school program or private study. Students learn a variety of music and work with guest artists as available. The ensemble performs four concerts throughout the year and has the opportunity for additional performances beyond the classroom. This includes a Symphony experience, pit orchestra, Solo/Ensemble, State Solo/Ensemble, Pep Band, and performances throughout the community.

Chamber Orchestra

Join our most challenging string ensemble and perform music at the Advanced and Collegiate Levels. In Chamber Orchestra you will work as a team to fine tune your ensemble sound, practice skills, teamwork, and leadership. We perform a variety of music and work with guest artists as available throughout the year. Chamber Orchestra is available for enrollment by audition only. Students enrolling in this course must possess the ability to perform intermediate to advanced string literature. Performances are scheduled as part of the class throughout the school year. Students in Chamber Orchestra have additional opportunities for performance outside of the class structure including Pit Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra, Solo/Ensemble Festival, State Solo/Ensemble Festival, Pep Band, and performances throughout the community.

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