Music

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The Music Department offers students of all grade levels and ability an opportunity to learn to play a band instrument as well as to study the theory and history of music. Students are encouraged to learn and utilize the most recent computer technology to compose, edit, and record their own pieces. St. Michael’s offers its students several options of bands and ensembles which perform for public audiences. Each year, the Music Department is well represented at various music festivals through the participation of the Wind Ensemble, Symphonic Band, Concert Band, and both the Senior and Junior Jazz Ensembles. Special trip bands are created for each grade to offer the students enriched performance opportunities by participating in an international tour to destinations such as Chicago, New York, Florida, and Europe. Students can also participate in our Drumline – a unique marching percussion ensemble for students of all grades and musical backgrounds.

Performing Groups

Grade 8

Grade 8

The Grade 8 Band consists of all the Grade 8 music students. This band does not rehearse after school but prepares and studies their performance pieces in their actual music class. This ensemble performs at the Christmas and Spring Concerts.

Honour Band
The Grade 8 Honour Band consists of the top-level musicians from the Grade 8 music classes. Students are invited to join this group based on their playing ability and dedication to participating in an after school band. The band rehearses from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Thursdays after school in the music department. This group performs at the Toronto Catholic District School Board music festival, Canada's Wonderland as well as at the Christmas and Spring Music Concerts.

Grade 9 & 10

Grade 9 Concert Band

The Grade 9 Beginner Band consists of all the Grade 9 music students who take the beginner level course. This band does not rehearse after school but prepares and studies their performance pieces in their actual music class. This ensemble performs at the Christmas and Spring Concerts

Grade 9 Symphonic Band

The Grade 9 Advanced Band consists of all the Grade 9 music students who take the advanced level course. This band does not rehearse after school but prepares and studies their performance pieces in their actual music class. This ensemble performs at the Christmas and Spring Concerts.

Grade 9 Trip Band

This group is created in January/February for a performance tour that will occur in late April of each year. All Grade 9 music students are eligible for this band. To join this group a student must fill out an application and a band is fromed based on the applicants. Rehearsals are held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday's after school in the music department. This group traditionally travels to Chicago to perform at various schools, community centers and at St. Michael's Cathedral. This ensemble performs at the Christmas and Spring Concerts.

Grade 10 Symphonic Band

The Symphonic Band consists of all the Grade 10 music students. This band does not rehearse after school but prepares and studies their performance pieces in their actual music class. This ensemble performs at the Christmas and Spring Concerts

Grade 10 Trip Band

This group is created in January/February for a performance tour that will occur in late April of each year. All Grade 10 music students are eligible for this band. To join this group a student must fill out an application and a band is created from the applicants. Rehearsals are held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesdays after school in the music department. Past tours include trips to New York City, Boston, Cleveland and Washington D.C.

Festival Winds

The Festival Winds is created from the top-level Grade 9 and 10 music students. Students are invited to join this group based on their playing ability and dedication to participating in an after school band. As its title suggests, this group is formed to perform at various music festivals but also performs at concerts within the greater Toronto community. In 2012, this group received a Gold standing at Musicfest Canada and throughout the years has performed at various schools, hospitals and businesses. They rehearse from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Mondays after school in the music department. This ensemble performs at the Christmas and Spring Concerts. After the music festival season is over this group disbands to allow the students to participate in the trip bands.

Grade 11 & 12

Senior Concert Band

The Senior Concert Band is created by combining the Grade 11 and 12 music classes. This band does not rehearse after school, but prepares and studies their performance pieces in their actual music class. This ensemble will perform at the Christmas and Spring Concerts

Senior Wind Ensemble
The Wind Ensemble is the top-level band for the school. It mainly consists of students in the Grade 11 and 12 Music Programme, but any student who has the ability to perform at this level can audition for placement in the band. This group rehearses on Monday's after school from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. The rehearsals are held in the Centre for the Arts (based on availability) or in Music Room 1. The Wind Ensemble competes in music festivals and goes on a performance tour every two years. Past tours have taken the band to Florida, the Bahamas, California, Mexico, Italy, Germany, Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic. This ensemble performs at the Christmas and Spring Concerts.

Jazz Ensembles

Junior Jazz Ensemble

The Junior Jazz Ensemble is a training group for those young musicians interested in performing jazz music. The group rehearses from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursdays after school in the music department and performs at our “Club Blue Note" held in May of each year.

Senior Jazz Ensemble

The Senor Jazz Ensemble is created to explore and develop students' knowledge of jazz music by performing in a 'Big Band' setting. All students are invited to audition for this group which rehearses on Thursdays after school from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. This group performs at music festivals and is the featured ensemble at our “Club Blue Note” held in May of each year.

Drumline

The SMCS Drumline was founded in the fall of 2005. This ensemble was created to encourage excellence and teamwork in our young men, add a new energy to school spirit at sporting and community events as well as offer the school increased visibility in the Greater Toronto area.

Junior Drumline
This ensemble is intended for students in Grades 7-10 who have little or no percussion experience. It is the training ground for the Sr. Drumline. Students who demonstrate the techniques necessary to succeed in the Sr. Drumline can be promoted at any time.

Senior Drumline
This ensemble is made up of mainly senior students who have demonstrated a proficiency for rudimental drumming.

Choir

The choir at St. Michael’s presents an amazing opportunity for Grade 11 and 12 students who enjoy singing or who wish to pray through music.

The choir meets once a week and works on different liturgical hymns, psalms, and liturgical responses in preparation for the school masses. Members are assigned particular singing parts that are suited best for their voices and allows for the overall sound of the choir to be beautifully harmonized.

At the masses, the choir is accompanied by the organ and the St. Michael’s band and brings forth an important element conducive to the overall spiritual dimension of the mass. The choir allows prayer to not only be spoken, but also to be sung through God’s gift of music.

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