String Ensembles Billboard

From the Music Directors

For most groups, there is a lot of music to learn in a much shorter period of time than you had to prepare for your last performance. We suggest that everyone really bear this in mind and double down on learning your music dutifully. It does not work to come to CYS every week and just read down your music without having practiced those parts that are necessary. We understand this is also a very hectic and busy time of year, with honor bands and orchestras, competitions, many school activities, upcoming CYSauditions, etc., but you also need to be able to focus clearly on the task at hand and your conductor must (I repeat, must) be able to detect demonstrable progress from week to week at your rehearsals.

We really ask everyone to take your CYS commitment seriously, and please make very sure of the following:

  • Arrive early to CYS: make sure that your parents and carpool buddies know this. Arrive in plenty of time to set up before the rehearsal. Arriving at the downbeat of rehearsal time is considered late. Please remember that we are looking at your attendance record (including tardies) when you walk in to your auditions in a couple of months from now.
  • Keep track of your absences and remember to check in with your attendance coordinator. If you are late (i.e. over 10-15 min late) our attendance coordinators may have already gone, please make sure you let your conductor know about your presence and contact your attendance coordinator that you were late with an explanation why you were late. 
    • Be reminded that the absence request forms must be submitted at least 2 weeks in advance. (It is a good refresher to review all the membership policies in your group's billboard page.) We have been getting too many last minute notifications, too often, and this can disrupt how the conductors wish to plan their rehearsals. If you have your absences already planned, there is no need to wait at least 2 weeks to submit your request form. Submit your absence request form immediately. 
    • Bear in mind that checking in to a rehearsal or a concert but immediately running off somewhere else to study and not participate in the rehearsal/concert or attend a required concert (i.e. student is not in the actual rehearsal room or inside the concert hall, not in the theater lobby or at the theater parking lot) is considered an absence. If there are circumstances that needs to be considered, please communicate with your conductor, coordinator, and CYS staff immediately as they may be able to assist you further with the matter. Our understanding has always been that our students are there at CYS because they seriously WANT to be, and thus if they check in, they are THERE at rehearsal or the concert.
  • No phones or homework assignments of any kind out, for ANY reason, during ANY part of a CYS rehearsal. You are given a break to do that. 
  • We really urge everyone to listen to the recordings, and OFTEN. If you have some idea of how the piece is supposed to go, you will have a better chance learning your parts and understanding where you fit in with the rest of the group.  
  • Bring your CYS music to your private teachers and work with them on your parts, not just your audition piece.

The bottom line here is: take great pride in what you are doing at CYS, because we are all very lucky to be able to be making great music together at a really very high level: something that very few people your age really have an opportunity to do. It can be pretty darn easy to just forget that sometimes and take it all for granted, which is the LAST thing you should do. CYS is a fabulous musical experience and we wish for everyone to feel a sense of artistic community and growth at any level that is a true honor to be a part of! GO CYS!

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