If we have not had the pleasure of meeting yet, I am Avery Gray your new Mount Pleasant High School Band Director. I am extremely honored and excited to continue in the tradition of excellence that has preceded before me with both Mr. Lee and Mr. Tulbert. Even in these uncertain times, music has the special power of lifting spirits.
During the past few weeks band students and I have quickly began to get to know one another and create music, even virtually. Albeit not the typical band rehearsals we as musicians are accustomed to each day during band we have been playing. Both in person and remote students are asked to join the teams meeting and follow along with the class while muted. All students remain muted, unless asked otherwise, due to the sound delay in the Teams Meeting. In accordance with the CCS guidelines in person students can only play wind instruments in an isolated room by themselves. Currently, wind students are playing in the band side rooms (uniform room, instrument storage room, music library, guard room, percussion room) during class. It is expected that students play with us during class unless they contact me prior. If this is a problem or concern for any families please feel free to email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Students are also asked to have their cameras turned on each day, otherwise this will affect their skill development grade. It is vitally important for students to turn on their cameras so I can address any technique issues while they play, for example embouchure adjustments. It is expected of students if this is a problem, camera/internet connection, to contact me prior to class.
During our county asynchronous days, usually Fridays, students are given assignments to complete by 11:59 pm in order to be marked as present. I typically open the assignment Thursday at 3 pm and have it due on Fridays at 11:59 pm. Students must complete the assignment prior to 11:59 pm in order to be marked present for the day. Again, if there are any problems completing the assignment please contact me via email as soon as possible so I can best assist you.
Optional Outdoor Marching Band Rehearsal
The 2021 high school football season is starting in early spring due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Cabarrus County Schools has approved marching bands to perform in the stands during the games. I would love to start rehearsals for students who are interested. Our performance at the games are dependent on student participation and attendance at after school rehearsals. The first home football game we would perform at is Friday March 12th. If you have any interest please come!
Our first rehearsal is scheduled for Thursday February 11 from 4 pm- 5 pm. The following week rehearsals will be scheduled for Tuesday February 16th at 4 pm and Thursday February 18th at 4pm both for one hour. Parents are currently not approved to help or volunteer at rehearsals, if you have questions please contact me this decision is from the school board.
I am very excited about the possibility of the students being able to perform, especially since it’s been over a year since they last experienced that. The one draw back about performing at the football games is currently with outdoor gatherings we have a cap at 100 people in attendance for football games. With that being said, “spectators” (fans at the games) tickets are being sold to parents of the football team and cheerleaders. I know there are many different opinions on this decision and it could possibly change before our first performance this is again a school board decision that is affecting all Cabarrus County Bands. Parent support is vitally important for students and I do not want to diminish that, my hope is to address the issue and possible solution in the coming weeks during a booster meeting.
I plan to have a booster meeting either the last week of February or the first week of March. I will send out an email, remind, and inform your students during class when I finalize the date early this coming week.
If you have not yet signed up for the band’s remind text app please do so to get quick updates on assignment deadlines and rehearsals. Remind is available through web browser, www.remind.com, text message, or app. To join via text please text the number 81010 with the message: @mpband1
The class code is @mpband1
I look forward to meeting you all in person hopefully sometime soon. It has been a real pleasure getting to know your students in class and I am excited for the future of the program.
Thank you and have a great weekend!
-Ms. Avery Gray