The Xavier Catholic Schools elementary orchestra program provides 4th grade students with a valuable and high quality musical experience where they will learn to listen and play as an ensemble. The program encourages personal discipline while advancing the critical links among music study, academic achievement and positive growth and development.
The major goal of beginning orchestra (violin, viola, cello and string bass) is to provide a solid base of musical skills and techniques while providing an opportunity for students to have fun making music with others. This is accomplished through weekly lessons, large group rehearsals and recitals and concerts. They will learn musical notation as it applies to their instrument, become increasingly familiar with simple rhythms, key signatures, dynamic markings and much more.
Orchestra is available to students in grades 5-8 at XMS. Orchestra meets two to three times per week. Each student has one 15 minute private lesson per week. Students perform in 2-3 concerts per year and are encouraged to participate in the annual Solo and Ensemble Festival at XMS or the WSMA Solo and Ensemble, based on grade level. Students will continue to learn how to play and perform on their instruments as a large ensemble through the Essential Elements book, in addition to learning a variety of string orchestra repertoire in both class and at their lesson. If a student is beginning orchestra for the first time, summer lessions are highly recommended.
The group’s main focus will be to build ensemble techniques through performance. The repertoire used in the course is drawn from Baroque through 20th Century music. Students meet for approximately six private lessons per term to work on basic technique through scales, etudes and concert music. Students have the opportunity to perform solos and small ensembles at WSMA Festivals as well as a required class performance at this event.
Chamber Music Ensemble meets two mornings a week before school. The class will focus on small ensemble playing with each person playing an important role. Students often perform for our school masses. Performances include but are not limited to various festivals and Solo and Ensemble Festival.
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