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In the Kearney High School band program we strive to offer the best and highest quality ensembles around. While all the ensembles we offer are important the concert band is at the core of what we do.

Wind Ensemble

This group is the top performing ensemble in the Kearney High School band program. The music is difficult and musical independence is a must. The Wind Ensemble is open to students in grades 10-12, with performances throughout the school year. Participation in marching band and pep band is a requirement for this class.

Symphonic Band

This group is open to all KHS instrumentalists and explores a slightly easier repertoire than Wind Ensemble. However, musical excellence and hard work are musts as we strive for great performance every time we play together. Members are also required to participate in the marching band and the pep band. Symphonic Band is open to students in 9th- 12th grade.

Concert Band

This ensemble is a chance for younger students to continue to develop and refine his/her skills as an instrumentalist. While the performance standards of this group remain high the literature will be slightly easier than the other groups. There will also be opportunity for students in Concert Band to gain jazz experience through out the year. Concert Band is open to students in grades 9-11. Participation in marching band and pep band is a requirement for this class.

Jazz Lab Band

This group is the entry-level group for students wishing to gain experience in a jazz group. The class provides students the opportunity to become familiar with jazz basics in playing demands, styles, and techniques. Although the group will perform at concerts and some community events, the course objective is to teach students a basic fundamental knowledge of how to read, understand, and play jazz music and a rudimental understanding of the history of jazz. Students must be enrolled in either Concert Band or Symphonic Band or have special permission from the instructor.

Jazz Ensemble

The next level of the jazz experience in the KHS band program. Students will be expected to perform difficult music at a high level and have an opportunity to play throughout the community. Subjects covered will be a variety of musical styles, jazz harmony and theory, improvisation, and jazz history. Jazz band is open to 11th and 12th graders and is limited to traditional jazz band instrumentation. Members of the jazz band will be required to be enrolled in marching band and one of the concert bands. Exceptions may be granted at the discretion of the director.

Marching Band

The marching band serves as an educational tool to teach students the challenge of marching and playing as while improving basic instrumental technique. It also represents the KHS band program at band competitions, parades, and home football games. This ensemble meets from 6:30-7:45 every morning during the 1st quarter. Each year we will put on a show for all home football games and compete in several statewide competitions. Attendance at band camp in early August is mandatory. Marching band is open to students in grades 9-12 and it is required that a student be enrolled in marching band AND a performing ensemble at Kearney High.

Percussion Techniques

Percussion Technique is a class designed to engage and grow the developing percussionist. Subjects covered will range from marching percussion to 4 mallet technique and everything in between. Perc. Tech. will meet during the 1st semester only and will take the place of the students concert band class during that semester. Students will then join their assigned concert band second semester.

Pep Band

A great chance to have fun playing music and encouraging our sports teams at KHS. Rehearsals will be worked into the regular band day and participation is a must for all KHS band members. There will be two equal but separate bands, the Blue Band and the Gold Band, and the two groups will equally split the time commitments. If a student needs to miss a given pep band performance then he or she will need to find a substitute from the other band.

AP Music Theory

An upper-level course for students interested in pursuing music at the college level or who have a strong desire to get more into the theory behind music. Topics will include music theory, harmonic and melodic dictation, analysis, and much more. Music Theory is offered as a block course in the second semester. Students will have the opportunity to take the AP Music Theory Exam and have a chance to earn college credit through the process.

Color Guard

This group is a part of the Bearcat Marching Band and rehearses with the band during the morning marching band rehearsals. There is also a required practice(s) outside the school day that will be determined by the group before school starts. Color Guard is open to anyone in the school. Attendance at all marching band performances is required.

Frequently Asked Questions

Remember when your children wouldn’t eat the food you made for them? You always said, “Try it before you decide you don’t like it.” Music is the same way. You should sign up for music even if you are unsure. If at some point you decide that music is not for you, drop the class. It is much easier to drop something after trying it, than to join late when you decide you miss it.

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 junior high. From day one, your child will be musically and personally mentored by successful upperclassmen who have a vested interest in their success. They 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 in junior high.

YES! There might be occasional conflicts, but know that our faculty works hard to resolve as many conflicts as possible before they occur and to work collaboratively to solve them when they arise. We want students to be well rounded.

The many ensembles have different requirements for participation. Some ensembles require very little (less than standard homework) while other ensembles 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.

The costs associated with music depend on which ensembles your child participates in and what events they participate in. The music boosters and staff work together to provide fundraising opportunities for each and every child and ensure that no one is excluded due to financial issues.

All incoming students should register for Marching Band and Concert Band. In addition because of our pairing of music classes students have the opportunity to sign up for Concert Choir, which for most of the year meets the same time band does.

We wish funds were available for us to provide every child with an instrument, however, this is simply not possible. The school provides many of the larger and more expensive instruments. We encourage students playing smaller, less expensive instruments to either rent or purchase their own instrument. We will not let instrument availability or financial constraints keep your child from participating. More information regarding instrument availability will be mailed as the new school year approaches.

Please know that we are here to answer any and all questions that you may have. Due to the busy nature of our program, it is difficult to contact us by phone. The best way for you to reach us is through email. This will allow us to respond to your query, whether you are available by phone or not.

You may use the form below to send any of the directors an email:

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