Can I do sports AND band?

YES! Of course you can! But... it requires that you plan and communicate properly. The SFHS Spirit and Pride has members that participate in: baseball, basketball, bowling, cheer leading, cross country, swimming, flag football, football, golf, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track and field, volleyball, weight lifting, and wrestling.

Band Takes a lot of time. Will I have time to study for my other classes?

With over 100 members, including Honors, AP, IB, and AVID students, band members prove that time is available... Students learn valuable time management skills. We also have experts in all academic areas who would love to help tutor you!

Is band expensive?

Every effort is made to minimize out-of-pocket expenses. There are NUMEROUS fundraising opportunities throughout the year designed to offset expenses.

With so many required classes, will I be able to fit band in my schedule?

YES! It IS possible to get band on your schedule whether you are in IB, AP, Dual Enrollment, AVID, or Honors, it just takes a little careful planning. In addition to your 7 different classes each year, participation in Marching Band fulfills the Fine Arts credit required for graduation and also earns you a P.E. waiver. Many Students Also elect to take the HOPE course and others classes online or at IRSC.

What do I get out of Band? EVERYTHING!

It will make your high school career.... You do not want to miss out on being a part of the South Fork Spirit and Pride Family!

Is Marching Band a class?

Marching Band is not a class. However, the Marching Band is a co-curricular activity that occurs after school and students receive grades for their participation and performances. Members of the Concert and Symphonic Band classes, along with the members of the color guard make up the membership of the South Fork High School Sprit and Pride Marching Band. Musicians in the marching band must be registered for a band class.

How is Band different in high school?

While the actual act of playing your instrument is similar, the social network and safety net that high school music provides is very different from middle school. From day one, you will be musically and personally mentored by successful upperclassmen who have a vested interest in your success. New SFHS Band Members will have dozens of new and like-minded friends before school even begins and have experiences (Friday night football games and trips) that are unlike anything they have experienced before.

What can I do to get ready for Band in the fall?

Besides the easy answer (practicing), there are many things to help your transition into high school go more smoothly. If you aren’t already doing private lessons, that is a great way to start. Just by joining marching band, you will be playing over the summer and through the fall, and be much more ready for concert season. For jazz band students, SFHS does not start Jazz Band activities until the fall, but listening to jazz repertoire can be fun AND beneficial, and the director can suggest some material.

What is Band Camp?

Band Camp is a two week-long event that takes place before school starts in late-July or early-August each year. This is the time when the marching band begins to learn their marching drill and perfect the marching show music. Band Camp takes place on campus at South Fork High School typically from 8:00am until 5:00pm, Monday through Friday. Band Camp is an opportunity for band students to form friendships that last throughout the year. An incoming band student will have advantages over other incoming students at SFHS because of the bonds they have formed during band camp. Band Camp is mandatory for all students wishing to participate in the South Fork High School Sprit and Pride Marching Band.

What if I don't own an instrument?

The band program is able to provide most instruments for students to rent. Please contact the band director to arrange a rental.

I cannot play an instrument or read music; can I still join the Band?

Yes! SFHS has a Beginning and class is for the absolute beginner. No experience is necessary. Students will be taught how to play an instrument and how to read music. You will be placed in a class with other beginners.

What if I don’t play a traditional marching band instrument?

Marching instruments include: Flute, Clarinet, Saxophone (Alto, Tenor, & Bari), Trumpet, French Horn (Mellophone), Euphonium (Baritone), Trombone, Tuba, Battery Percussion (Snare Drum, Tenor Drums, Bass Drums), and Pit Percussion (Keyboard Percussion, Timpani, Piano (Synthesizer), Auxiliary Percussion). If you do not play one of these instruments, YOU CAN STILL JOIN. If you play a different instrument we may be able to find you a similar instrument to learn. If you have a basic musical background (piano, choir, elementary level instrument, strings, etc.) you will probably be able to learn a marching percussion or pit instrument easily. If you are interested in learning dance/movement, joining the color guard might be an excellent option for you. Many color guard members have no background in the musical or marching arts when they start, so this may be a more comfortable option for members with no musical background.

What is the Color Guard?

The Color Guard provides a visual picture alive with message and meaning and adds to the general effect of the marching show. Guard members use flags, rifles, sabers and dance as part of the drill design adding to the visual interpretation of the music.

Will I be able to keep up with homework and other academic responsibilities if I'm in the band?

ABSOLUTELY! The students in the band program are some of the most academically disciplined at SFHS. In fact, the band has one of the highest aggregate grade point averages of any club, team, or organization on campus. There is a wealth of research documenting the correlation between participation in school music programs- particularly instrumental music- and higher test scores and academic achievement. Just by nature of the busier schedule, band students find that they learn to manage their time more efficiently. Many band students are on the honor roll, are members of the National Honor Society and receive academic awards throughout the year. A large percentage of the students in SFHS’s thriving AP and IB programs are made up of band and/or auxiliary students. Each year, the top ten of the senior class is populated with band students who are thriving both musically and academically.

How much out of school time is required?

The different ensembles at SFHS have different requirements for participation. Some ensembles (like the concert band) require a modest amount of after school practice (less than standard homework) while other ensembles (like marching band) require more substantial commitment. Generally, the greater the level of commitment, the greater the reward and memories. Regardless of the ensemble, a year-long calendar will be provided well in advance to help you plan for these events.

I’m a parent…how do I get involved?

Parents can visit their Cut-Time account to see opportunities to help with the band program. There is so much going on with our band, we just couldn’t function without our incredible Band Family! The band parents help with fundraising, event planning, and so much more. The most important thing however is the volunteering their time. If every parent were to volunteer at just one event, we would have plenty for the entire year!!! “Many hands make light work!”

What is the Battery and Front Ensemble?

The battery is the marching part of the percussion section. The battery consists of snare drums, multi-tenors, bass drums, and cymbals. The Front Ensemble consists of the stationary instruments of the percussion ensemble, including marimbas, vibraphones, xylophones, bells, chimes, crotales, cymbals, concert bass drums, a keyboard, and various other stationary percussion instruments. Both sections are extremely valuable to the marching band.

What is the Pit Crew?

The Pit Crew is made up of band parents, and it assists the band by moving the front ensemble, drums, props and other pieces of equipment on and off the performance area. Because competitions are a timed performance with penalties assessed for exceeding the allotted time, the Pit Crew plays an important and necessary role in supporting the band’s ability to perform the show.

A closing request:

In closing, we would like to say that regardless of the capacity that you serve as a band parent, from an active board member to cheering in the stands, the choice to support your child is something you will not regret. When a parent dedicates their time to this program, it truly shows the band students, and especially their own student just how much they value what they do!