For The Aspiring Musician
Band Together NOLA is a collection of ensemble-based music education programs specifically designed to teach young musicians the art of practicing, rehearsing, and performing as a group. Combining academics and music theory with real-world insights and hands on experience, Band Together NOLA provides aspiring young musicians the opportunity to apply their skills in a group setting, while learning valuable lessons applicable well beyond the world of music.
THE FULL ENSEMBLE COURSE
Our signature program, The Full Ensemble Course places students in group ensembles (3-7 players each) based on the total number of applicants per Trimester, their skill level, primary instrument, genre preference, scheduling availability, etc.
Bands will meet once a week for 10 weeks at a fully-equipped rehearsal studio. Sessions are divided into four segments:
Mind/Body Warm-Ups (15 min) - Through a combination of breathing exercises, stretches, and light meditation, students will begin each session learning the importance of relaxation, mindfulness, and self-awareness, setting the tone for a more positive and productive learning environment.
Daily Lesson (30 min) - Each Daily Lesson will focus on learning and developing one of the myriad skills that are essential for ensemble participation. These include both musical concepts (i.e. tuning/intonation, blending, arranging, clear communication/cues etc.) as well as essential non-musical skills (i.e. interpersonal communication, giving/receiving constructive criticism, organizing, planning and running rehearsals, etc.) that are crucial to fostering a healthy, well-functioning ensemble. for many of these Daily Lessons, a selection of guest speakers (local musicians, business owners, community members) will share their real-world experiences and offer students advice and instruction on the topic at hand.
Musical Warm-Ups (15 min) - From running basic scales and rhythmic patterns, to simple chord changes and improvisation, full group exercises are crucial to both individual and ensemble proficiency, and will strengthen students' abilities to hear and process their own sonic output, the sound of the group as a whole, and most importantly, how they all fit together.
Full Ensemble Rehearsal (45 min) - Once warmed-up, the latter half of each session will be spent rehearsing a number of musical selections (chosen by both the instructor and the group). These Full Ensemble Rehearsals offer students a chance to apply their acquired knowledge and skills as they work together to prepare their song selections for the program's culminating concert, the Band Together Showcase.
After 10 sessions are complete, students will meet one last time for a Dress Rehearsal, where they will focus solely on running all their musical selections and reviewing concert procedure/protocol. This will take place the week of the Showcase, and like the Showcase itself, is a necessary feature of the program.
The Band Together Showcase will feature performances by all Band Together NOLA ensembles, and will be held at a local, family-friendly music venue for the entire community can attend.
Visit our REGISTRATION page to sign up or check current availability.
BAND TOGETHER 101
Band Together 101 is our introductory course and offers younger and/or less experienced students an opportunity to gain valuable ensemble skills while they hone their instrumental proficiency. The course is offered once a week for 10 weeks (along-side The Full Ensemble Course), and students are free to sign up for one lesson at a time, and as many (or as few) as they'd like.
Each one-hour session will progress similarly to our Full Ensemble Course, going through mind/body exercises, full ensemble warm-ups, and a brief lesson. Students will then be able to choose, as a group, from a number of different performance options for the day, including (but not limited to): an open jam session, learn and perform a simple song, practice collective writing, etc. The lessons and activities will be designed to allow for beginners and first timers to meaningfully engage, while also providing a longer goal-oriented arc for those who attend multiple sessions.
Students who attend 6/10 group sessions are eligible for performance in the course-culminating Band Together Showcase. If a student wishes to perform in the Showcase, they must attend the Dress Rehearsal (an extra rehearsal held between the last session and the Showcase) and demonstrate sufficient proficiency on their instrument and their parts.
Visit our REGISTRATION page to sign up, or to check our current availability.
INDIVIDUAL & GROUP LESSONS
In addition to our Ensemble Courses, Band Together NOLA also offers individual and group lessons on a wide variety of instruments and in a range of styles and genres. Lessons can be reserved one-at-a-time or in blocks based, and are offered on most days of the week.
All of our highly-qualified instructors are local musicians active and invested in New Orleans' vibrant communities and culture, offering a well-rounded educational experience focusing on technical proficiency, musical literacy, and especially group dynamics.
NOCCA PREP COURSE
The New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA) is a local, highly-competitive, arts-based high school, offering young New Orleans artists a high-quality, well-balanced education. Our NOCCA Prep Course is specifically designed to prepare prospective students for the application and audition process. Lessons will cover the basic elements of music theory, ear-training, and sight-singing, as well as tips and techniques on effective studying, practicing, and test-taking.
The NOCCA Prep Course is offered two ways: a 10-12 week group session that meets once a week at set times, or as an individual, one-on-one course (with more flexibility for lesson length/frequency).
Please visit our REGISTRATION page to sign up and/or to view availability.
FULL ENSEMBLE COURSE
Open to students aged 8 - 16
Students must be currently taking lessons, either in school or privately*
At least one year of playing experience (2 or more recommended)
Students must provide their own instrument
Commitment to 100% Attendance**
* If a student does not currently have a private/school instructor, but still wishes to be a part of our program, we have a number of excellent teachers on staff and offer bulk rates for signing up for both the program and lessons.
** IMPORTANT NOTE: This course is intended to develop group skills, and as such it is imperative that students attend every session, and equally as important that they work on the material outside of rehearsals, so that they are prepared during each rehearsal to work as a group. Excess absence and/or lack of preparation significantly and negatively affects the group as a whole. Therefore, to guarantee maximum participation and enjoyment of the program, we maintain a strict absence/preparation policy. Three or more absences (outside of reasonable circumstances, to be considered on a case-by-case basis) will result in a student's removal from their group, without a refund. Similarly, continued lack of preparation may also result in a student's expulsion. These policies are not meant to be cold or restrictive, they simply reflect the extreme importance of reliability when working with others. We firmly believe that holding our students to the higher standards will encourage them to do the same for themselves and their peers.
As the goal of Band Together NOLA is to be as inclusive as possible, we are always open to making exceptions when the situation or need calls for it, and will work with everyone as best we can to make this a truly communal experience for all to enjoy.
BAND TOGETHER 101
Open to students aged 7-17
At least 3-6 months of experience on primary instrument (1+ year recommended)
Students must provide their own instrument
Students must attend at least six out of ten sessions, plus the Dress Rehearsal, and demonstrate sufficient dedication and proficiency, in order to participate in the Final Showcase
NOCCA PREP COURSE
Open to students aged 9-14 (grades 6-8)
At least one year of experience on primary instrument (2+ recommended)
Private lessons on primary instrument are strongly encouraged (but not required) to accompany/compliment the course