Rehearsal Notes Week 7, October 31, 2017

Hello Bytown Musicians,

Great esprit de corps! Not only did we make eerily fine music, but many musicians wore very creative costumes –  which added to the fun! This week, we had our first full two-hour band rehearsal. The embouchures really held up well, which means your daily practicing is paying off!  Now that we are past the beginning weeks, you can probably practice for 30-40 minutes without exhausting your muscles.  Trick: A sip of water between pieces relaxes and refreshes the embouchure.  And remember the old saying: slow and steady…..



**We are Collecting money for refreshments (approx. $2) and to thank custodians and teacher (approx. $2) next week**

Extra rehearsals with Cathy (please email!): Monday Nov 6- 1:45-3 (bring $ to cover Woodroffe rental) and 7-8:15

Social Meetup: 4:15 @ Broadway Bar and Grill Fisher/Prince of Wales

Concert Date:  December 10 at Brookfield HS  2 pm (BBB will warm up on stage at 1 pm, and set up volunteers will be needed at 12:30) 

Potsdam One-Day Band Camp and Potluck:  Saturday!  (don’t forget your passport, instrument, and your fingering chart (in the back of your book)

 Spring concert: April 15 … save the date!


This week we read: EE 24, 25 (remove the breath mark four bars before the end, and stagger breath/sneak a breath anywhere but there!),28,30,31, 41 (eighth notes)

Next week:  EE  25 (lightly), 28 (practice playing by ear and add in the missing part of the song), 30,41, 44, 52

Please continue to listen to the links this week for each piece, at least three times for each piece:1.  for the feel of the piece, and the overall map of the piece.    2. focus on your instrument 3. Follow with your music, with your instrument in your hands, doing the fingering/positions/sticking silently, not making a sound with your instrument (pp – pretend to play)

Ogopogo:  The piece is really starting to take shape!  Focus is increasingly on dynamics and shaping the notes with a crescendo (gradually louder) or diminuendo (gradually softer).

Autumn:  Continue to focus on achieving a light, detached articulation at a steady, slow tempo. More silence between quarter notes (black notes). To achieve this stop the staccato with your tongue a tat-tat-tat-tat kind of articulation. This will help keep the air pressure to avoid an accented note. The half notes are played for their full value.  Aim to play slurs only where they are marked; some eighth note pairs are slurred and others are articulated.

Big Raven:   We made it right through the piece, with some natural and supernatural sounds… for Hallowe’en fun. The low brass instruments are featured at 44, so play out with a big sound! Upper wind instruments may choose to edit out the second eighth note.  By practicing one bar over and over slowly and then gradually more quickly, you will get some of the tricky parts under your fingers!  Play with increasing attention to the articulations: staccato (short, detached notes) and tenuto ( the line indicates to play the note for the full value with extra weight in the middle of the note, not on the attack at the start of the note.

Twist and Shout   We played the whole piece at a medium slow tempo.  Staccato notes are short, detached notes (don’t speed up on them).  The low instruments of the band have an important part in the second last bar…enjoy a nice full sound on those notes! (We want to hear the smile in your sound!)


Special “basic music reading and how-to-practice” optional session for beginners:   Monday, November 6 at 1:30 or 6:30 pm (Location to be announced, depending on numbers) Please email Cathy if you plan to attend, and include your preferred time.  We may be able to get Woodroffe United Church (and all pitch in $5 each) if there is a larger number in the afternoon, as indicated by the show of hands.

SmartMusic and Essential Elements Interactive are two ways to really maximise progress on learning to read music.

If you have not had a chance to try it out, check back in last week’s note for more info on your ID number and how to register. Last reminder!


  1. Autumn Antonio Vivaldi (arr Douglas Wagner – the version that we will play a fast and lively allegro)

  1. Big Raven Vince Gassi (Toronto composer – inspired by the paintings of Emily Carr, the sounds of the forest, and legends surrounding the Raven)

  1. Ogopogo(Legendary Lake Creature of Okanagan Valley, BC)  Robert Buckley (Canadian)

  1. Twist and Shout