Stratford Spartan Band
Please visit the SHS band web site for detailed information about the band program and to find out more about Mum sales.
The Stratford band marches during the fall season and plays at football games. In addition, they prepare a marching routine for UIL contest in October. During the spring, the band transitions into concert season, where they prepare for a performance & sightreading contest.
How many members are in the band?
How many members can you have?
We take as many people as sign up and are committed to attending rehearsals and performance. However, not everyone performs at contests and during half time shows.
Do you have different types of band?
We have the marching band during football season, then in November we immediately begin concert season in which we perform concerts on stage. During concert season we have three different bands: concert band, symphonic band, and honors band (from least competitive to most competitive.) Band members also collaborate with the Orchestra program to form the Full Orchestra, the members of which play concerts in the fall and spring and compete at its own UIL competition.
Who is in the band? What do they play?
The band is made up of many different parts coming together to perform a half-time or contest show. The largest portion of the band is the "wind" section, wind referring to the fact that they blow air through their instruments to make music. The wind section is made up of woodwinds (clarinets, flutes, and saxophones) and brass players (tubas, trombones, euphoniums, French horns, and trumpets). The wind players play their instruments while marching in complex formations. The drum line (made up of bass drums, quints, and snare drums) also marches in formations with the wind players. The other section that makes formations on the field is the color guard, but they dance and toss flags, adding another dimension to the visual aspect of the marching band. The last group that plays in a half-time or contest show is the front ensemble, the members of which play percussion instrument like the timpani, gong, xylophone, chimes, and cymbals on the front sideline off the field. Standing on podiums, conducting the music, are the two drum majors.
What instrument can you play?
You can play any of the instrument mentioned above, along with instruments that are not used on the marching field, like bassoon and oboe.
When does the band practice?
The band practices eight hours a week, usually Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 3:30 to 5:30. The band also practices for about an hour before every football game or contest.
Does it take up a class period of the students' day to be part of the band?
Yes, everyone that is a part of the band must have it for one period in their schedule.
Does the band compete in any events?
Along with the events mentioned in question one, individual band members compete in a state-wide competition that eventually leads up to a state band being chosen. There are regional, area, and state level auditions in which students prepare their scales and three assigned songs for a panel of judges. The Orchestra and Choir also have similar auditions, and if a student makes the state band, orchestra, or choir, they travel to San Antonio to take part in the four day Texas Music Educators Association Conference, part of which is a clinic and concert with nationally renowned conductors and the best musicians in the state. Students can also compete individually and in small groups at the UIL Solo & Ensemble Contest.