Our band camp is still scheduled for August 3 - 7th!
Members - keep an eye on your emails and the Band App for the specifics as we progress through the summer.
2020 Virtual Performances
Atwater HS Concert Choir
I Wish You Well, My Friend
Atwater HS Symphonic Band
Atwater HS Alma Mater
COVID - 19 Updates
June 29th Update
Thank you everyone for your patience as we navigate these uncertain times. If you are a planner like me, not knowing what comes next could be very anxiety-inducing. I am hoping to give everyone weekly updates via Email, Band App, and on the website. The MUHSD Band Directors have been very active through June to ensure that we have a meaningful program this fall, and I hope that this brief summary (which is very much subject to change) will help alleviate some of the uncertainty.
MUHSD has been wonderfully supportive of our identity as an active music program. MUHSD band directors have been working closely with our individual administrations and the district risk-management to bring sectionals in the early weeks of July and to allow for our band camps as scheduled, though they may look different, though I am not sure what ‘different’ means yet. Currently, we are to have 10 students per teacher/instructor. This makes full-band an impossibility as of now, but street percussion, guard and small section rehearsals will be possible. Please keep an eye on your band app and this website for updates following the July 4 weekend!
Fall 2020 Shows
All schools in Merced County are not to travel outside the county for competition or performance. To adhere to this mandate, the MUHSD band directors are creating 3 independent shows, complete with street percussion competition, parade band & guard competition and quality judging. Please add these tentative dates to your calendars:
Show #1 - Atwater HS - October 24
Show #2 - Livingston HS - November 7
Show #3 - Golden Valley HS - November 14
Show #1 is our host show (I know, I keep doing this to us, sorry!), but we will be able to use this as a fundraiser for our program - we will need parent and student volunteers. More info to come…
Our schools will open on an A and B schedule, meaning 50% of the school will be assigned as ‘A’ schedule students, and 50% will be assigned as ‘B’ schedule students, with Monday and Wednesday requiring ‘A’ schedule students to attend and ‘B’ schedule students attending Tuesday and Thursday. Any day a student is not required to attend will be required to do distance learning from home. Assignment to ‘A’ or ‘B’ schedules will be determined by your last name, alphabetically. Fridays are reserved for ‘special groups,’ which have not yet been defined. I have put in my request to have all Band students on the same schedule, all guard students on the same schedule, and all choir students on the same schedule. More info to come…
For actual class, I do not have an answer as to how our various ensembles will rehearse or even WHERE we will rehearse. I do not yet know if we will be able to rehearse together as one unit. I have ideas as to what would maximize our efforts, but I cannot communicate these yet until our administration addresses the myriad of questions, concerns and possibilities that may be coming.
As we approach the beginning of school, I am very aware that the COVID curve is trending in the wrong direction and I am fully privy to the possibility that everything could change multiple times before we open. The best thing we can do is hope that we can be together again and perform as we always do: with excellence.
Practice the march! It is on our Band App. Email me if you need an invite. Revisit our warm up book (which I am updating dramatically) and remember your fundamentals (not just scales - tone, intonation, lip slurs, octave leaps, etc) and communicate ideas with each other to make this year as memorable and effective as we can make it! Get on YouTube and watch Drum Corps videos, old parade videos, or look up videos on techniques that you may have been curious about and give them a try (vibrato? Circular breathing?).
I truly do hope that you are all doing well and I hope that you are getting some vacation in, even if it is just hanging out in the backyard with your family (besides the occasional hike, that’s all I’ve done!). Remember: everybody is being dealt the same hand - what matters now is how you will make the most of it.
Director of Bands & Choirs, Atwater HS