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MB Orientation and Information

posted Apr 26, 2017, 6:10 AM by Athens Drive High School Band   [ updated Apr 26, 2017, 6:14 AM ]
Dear New/Returning Marching Band Member and Parent,
The purpose of this letter is to provide you with information regarding the marching schedule for the upcoming months.  All band activities can also be seen anytime on the calendar portion of the band website.


Drum Major Candidate Training and Audition

May 1, 3, 4, 8                                        3:00-5:00pm

May 10 (audition)                                  3:15-5:00pm


Section Leader Interviews (including guard/percussion captains)

Students will sign-up for a 10 minute interview during the time listed below. 

May 2-3                                                 3:00-5:30pm


Rising Freshmen Orientation Meetings

New members attend one or both; Section Leaders attend both.

May 15 & 16                                            6:30-8:30pm


Colorguard Clinics & Auditions (no experience necessary)

The clinics and auditions are required for all students intending on participating in colorguard. 

May 15 & 16                                                6:30-8:30pm                            Clinics

May 22 & 23                                                6:30-8:30pm                            Auditions


Percussion Clinics & Audition

The clinics are highly recommended for all new students as well as returning students who are interested in auditioning on an instrument that they have not played before.  The audition is required for all students, new and returning.

May 15 & 16                                                    6:30-8:30pm                            Clinics

May 22 & 23                                                    6:30-8:30pm                            Auditions


Leadership Meetings for all rising Seniors/Section Leaders

May 4                                                                2:40-3:10pm

May 30 (election of band captain)                    2:40-3:15pm

TBA (inventory/cleaning)                                  TBA                                                                   


July 24-27                                                        6:30pm-10:00pm*

*Leadership meetings for seniors and section leaders will be held 3:00-5:00pm Monday through Thursday; attendance is mandatory.


Band Camp at N.C. Wesleyan College (Rocky Mount, NC)

July 30 - Aug. 4 All day/night                         


Post Camp

Aug. 8, 9, 10                                                    6:30pm-10:00pm                                

Aug. 15, 16, 17                                                6:30pm-10:00pm

Aug. 22, 23, 24                                                6:30pm-10:00pm


After-School Rehearsals (beginning Tuesday, Aug. 29 to early November)*


Tuesday                                                          3:00-5:30pm (*)

Wednesday                                                     3:00-5:00pm (*)

Thursday                                                         3:00-5:30pm


*Rehearsals for drumline, front ensemble, and guard may vary from the above due to instructor availability.  The drumline usually rehearses in the evening on Wednesday (not after school); the guard usually rehearses in the evening on Tuesday and Wednesday (not after school).  The entire band usually rehearses after school on Thursday.  All changes will be communicated in writing as far in advance as possible and the current calendar is available anytime on the band website.


*We will be having extra rehearsals in November and December to prepare for our trip to the Outback Bowl.  More information concerning these rehearsals will be distributed once the school year begins.  We will work with students involved in other sports/winter activities.


Performance Schedule

At the time of this letter, all performances are TBA, but include 5 home football games (usually Friday evenings), 5 competitions (on Saturdays), and several other events (parades, school assemblies).  In general, the students will be involved in some type of activity on most Saturdays from mid-September to mid-December.  A complete rehearsal and performance schedule will be distributed in May.


Additional Information/FAQs



Students interested in colorguard or percussion must attend the clinics and audition in May.  Specific placement within units will depend on talent/skill level.  Woodwind and brass players who have successfully completed 8th grade band in middle school are not required to audition.  Students who have not participated in middle school band should contact the band director for specific requirements.


Orientation Meetings?

All rising freshmen and students new to marching band are highly encouraged to attend one or both of the orientation meetings on May 15 & 16.  [Percussion and guard students must attend these meetings as they are audition dates.]  The purpose of these meetings is to provide an opportunity for students and parents to visit our campus, meet our staff and parent boosters, and actually do some rehearsing (wear tennis shoes and bring your instrument).


Summer Rehearsals?

  • Summer rehearsals are necessary due to the school schedule and the amount of training/conditioning involved in this activity.  Percussionists and guard usually meet 1-2 days per week throughout June and July to learn/strengthen fundamentals.  These informal rehearsals are NOT MANDATORY, but highly encouraged.  The instructors will provide dates and times for these rehearsals in early June. 
  • Pre-Camp is required for all band members (including percussion and guard) in order to teach/review marching fundamentals and for students to get acquainted with each other and the staff.  Band Camp is the most important week of the marching band season.  It is an intense week where students focus almost entirely on learning the competition show.  The purpose of Post Camp is to reinforce and strengthen skills, movement, and music learned at band camp. 
  • If you would like to participate in the 2017 Marching Band but cannot attend one or more of the summer rehearsals, please contact the band office as soon as possible.  Band camp is the most critical of all weeks; exceptions to this week are made sparingly and are based on musicianship skills and circumstances. 


Our marching band performs a variety of music reflecting the three major roles that we fulfill to our school/community and students:  1) ceremonial/patriotic music (Star Spangled Banner, America, etc.) to fulfill our role as ambassador; 2) pep and spirited music (oldies and current hits) to add excitement to sporting events and rallies; and 3) “artistic music” to enhance the music education of our students and audience.  It is this

music that we play for competitions.  



The Athens Drive Marching Band will be traveling to Tampa Florida to participate and perform in the New Year’s Day 2018 Outback Bowl!  It is simply a “special year” for our marching band… like the season we performed in the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade or the Memorial Day Parade in Washington DC.  It’s an HONOR to be part of a national event like the Outback Bowl! 

Everyone in the Marching Band will attend the Outback Bowl trip.  Since all Marching Band members will be part of the trip, the Outback Bowl trip is included in the 2017-18 Marching Band Fees and Fair Share Obligations. 


Marching Band Fees and Fair Share Obligations for 2017-18:


Marching Band Non-Refundable Registration Fee


Marching Band Fair Share Obligation ($775 for Color Guard)

Marching Band receives NO FUNDING from WCPSS, making it necessary to assess a “fair share obligation” for participating in the marching band.  “Fair Share” funds cover the costs of band camp, instruments, extra staffing, music, charting, equipment, transportation, and other service needs.


Outback Bowl Trip

Includes hotel, transportation, tickets for Busch Gardens, Disney, Outback Bowl Activities (Parade, Field Show Competition, Bowl Game including mass band half time show, and more), hot breakfast every day, one additional meal a day, etc. Students will need additional money for one meal a day and any souvenirs. Sibling discounts do NOT apply for the trip.  NOTE:  Original trip costs were over $1,000.  Because of the special nature of this trip, bus transportation costs are being covered by the band’s general fund, an estimated $200 value per student.


Service Commitment  (maximum 5 shifts @$35 each)

Each family is assessed $175 “Service Commitment”.  Families have the option to 1) pay it, or 2) work at qualifying venues to “earn” it.  Two venues qualify for Service Credits – State Fair Parking and PNC.  By working a shift at either of these venues, a family earns shift pay AND a $35 credit (maximum 5) for their student’s band account.  After a family has worked 5 shifts and fulfilled the Service Commitment portion of fees, the family can continue to work these fundraisers to earn shift pay for the student’s band account.  Simply put, the Service Commitment is like a $35 “bonus” for a maximum of 5 shifts worked at a qualifying venue (State Fair Parking and PNC).   

NOTE:  All wind and percussion students are required to purchase marching shoes through the band for approximately $45.


Payment Plans

To assist families and to ensure sufficient cash flow to pay marching band and Outback Bowl expenses (the majority of expenses occur early in the season), several payment plans have been designed to meet a variety of financial situations. Financial assistance will also be available for families who demonstrate need.   Of course, money earned through fundraisers and service commitments will lower these amounts.


Payment plans include expenses for BOTH Marching Band AND the Outback Bowl trip.  Families will be required to select a payment plan when completing the Marching Band Registration Form.  For a complete list of payment plans, including a description, payment amounts and deadlines, visit the band website under “Marching Band” then look for “Fees and Fair Share” or follow this link.


Financial Assistance

Financial assistance is available through the booster organization for students who demonstrate need for marching band and the Outback Bowl trip.  No student should be discouraged to join due to financial obligation; we will assist every family willing to contribute their “fair share”.  Financial aid information and forms are available on the “Forms” page of the website or by contact Dr. Markoch, any Co-Treasurer or any Co-President.


Families with two or More Children in Marching Band

Families with more than one student in the marching band program will receive a discount. 

  • Registration Fee:  $100 for the first student; $80 each additional student
  • Fair Share:  $975 for the first student; 20% less for each additional child.  If one child plays a wind/percussion instrument and another child is a member of the color guard, the 20% discount will be taken from the guard assessment.

Payment Information

The Band Boosters accept a variety of payment forms, including checks, credit cards, and online payments. For more details, visit the “Online Services” section of the band website and “Payments”, or follow this link.


How do I sign up?

In order to be included in the 2017 Athens Drive Marching Band, each student—new and returning—must complete the “Registration Form” located on the Forms page of our website at www.athensdriveband.com, or by following the link at the top of the homepage by June 2nd.  The website contains complete details about payment plans and due dates. 

During registration, you will be required to submit a payment.  The amount of the required payment is dependent upon the time of registration and the payment plan selected.  Because our music and drill is custom written for our band, we must know exact numbers by June 3rd.  A student is considered “registered” once the Marching Band Registration form has been completed AND the corresponding payment has been made.  Students who enroll after June 2nd are not guaranteed a position.


Final Thoughts

  • Because the success of a group such as the marching band is contingent upon participation from everyone involved, it is crucial that students be at ALL rehearsals and performances.  If you see a serious conflict with any of the aforementioned dates, please let me know in writing as soon as possible.  Many circumstances—including doctor appointments—can be adjusted now in order to avoid hindering the progress of over 160 students!
  • We are proud of the fact that over 90% of all instrumental music students at ADHS (those enrolled in Concert Band, Symphonic Band, and Wind Ensemble) participate in the marching band.  We are also excited about the accomplishments of this group:  During the past 40 years the marching band has won numerous “First Place” and “Grand Champion” awards and has performed in such famous locales as the Washington D.C. Memorial Day Parade, the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade, and the Walt Disney World Electric Light Parade.  And we are so excited to be performing in the Outback Bowl in Tampa, Florida later this year!  This is an outstanding music program and we look forward to your enthusiastic participation!
  • If you have any questions regarding the contents of this letter or our band program, please do not hesitate to contact me (email is easiest).  We look forward to seeing you soon!

   Dr. Jerry Markoch