Nov. 9th Orchestra Update

Hello Orchestra Community! 


I'll try to be brief, but it won't be easy.  :)


Calendar Updates

Apparently, some dates that were cancelled in August for evening rehearsals that did not make it off the Google Calendar. My apologies! In general, we do discuss evening rehearsals a few days in advance in class, so there are no surprises. With a certainty, I can tell you the next evening rehearsals are:


Monday, December 7th:

  • Concert Orch 6:30-7:30p (with winds)

  • Symphony Orch 7:30-9:00p (with winds)


POPS Meeting TOMORROW! 7p in B116 at Pioneer

Tomorrow evening at 7p, the POPS Board will be running a general membership meeting for ALL PARENTS to attend. There will be much on the agenda, including upcoming fundraisers, calendar items, the monumental task of hosting Solo and Ensemble, and much more. Please attend if you can!


Orchestra Social Event

There will be an added opportunity for Orchestra Students to socialize in the coming month or two. It will likely be a bowling gathering, or something at Zap Zone. Council and myself are working on this behind the scenes for the program. Keep an eye out for the invitation to these events.


Lost Music? Need Recordings? Dropbox!

It should ALL be in the Dropbox for your orchestra. Get to the Dropbox from the link below, or using the password ******* on the website.


The Need for Practicing/ Practice Club!

After 8 years in Ann Arbor, I am fully aware of the busy schedules each student keeps. However, I have noticed a decline in preparation for playing exams, particularly the midterm from this past week. I would like to remind all families that practicing is REQUIRED for improvement and growth in orchestra. Yes, the more advanced ensembles need more practice time, but most importantly is the need for CONSISTENT and FOCUSED practice. With this said, I am introducing...

The Pioneer Orchestra PRACTICE CLUB! This will run each Friday through December break from end of 6th hour through 4:30p in B116.


I began opening this option 2 weeks ago, and 3 people took advantage of it the first week. This past Friday, we had about 12-15 students participate. It was a very fun and simple way to get some practice in (chamber groups/solos/orchestra music), and if nothing else, blow off some musical steam going into the weekend.

The Practice Club will meet again this Friday until 4:30. Feel free to come and go and practice as you please. I will be available to help!


Accompanist List

The number one question over the past few weeks: Do you have a list of accompanists I can call to play with me at S/E? Well, this is the most updated list I have. It is small. Good luck!


  • Erica Arnold                           734-994-0891
  • Sandy Collins                           734-663-3702
  • Beth Dixon                                    734-665-7057
  • Melinda Haithcock                 
  • Rosalie Koenig                           734-717-2336

Private Teacher List

Reminder: Private Lessons are NOT required to be a part of our program. However, many students request private teacher lists weekly to prep for auditions, playing tests or S/E. Once again, here is the list I have:  Private Teachers


All State Auditions

I am delighted to announce that we had 12 Pioneer string students audition for All State Orchestra this past month! Results should be coming in the next few weeks. Congratulations for all who participated!


Citizenship Sign-Up (2 for the year!!!)

It's time to sign up for your SECOND citizenship opportunity! The help we need now, more than ever, is the student solo and ensemble volunteering. We are asking each student to sign up for 2 shifts if at all possible for the S/E weekends.  Please do so ASAP. 


Other ways to volunteer in the immediate future:

Librarian work-- Tuesdays at Lunch! More slots opened for now through December. 



Senior Concerto Competition

This week is the 60th Pioneer Concerto Competition. We are extremely proud of ALL of our seniors who participate, and look forward to sharing the culmination of the audition process on the concert in March. In the meantime, if you have a senior, or ARE a senior, try to enjoy the process as much as possible, and be proud of what you have accomplished. I don't have an exact timetable for releasing the results, but it will likely be within the next week or so. 


GRAMMY Semi-Finalist for 2015-2016

The Pioneer High School Music Department has been selected as a semifinalist for the GRAMMY in the Schools Foundation competition again this year! Congratulations to all Pioneer music students. We are currently in the process of reviewing recordings from the past year for the next round of the competition. We will keep you posted as we learn more. 


POPS/Fundraising Update

Coming later this week. Email blast regarding:

  • RACE FOR THE PODIUM (who will be conducting Sleigh Ride for the December Concert? ) -- fundraising details coming soon! 
  • PIE/CAKE SALE PART 2 -- fundraising details coming soon! 
  • SOLO AND ENSEMBLE PARENT HELP-- details coming soon!

Winter Concert (Tuesday, December 8th, 7:30-9p) Repertoire

Philharmonia Orch (20 min)

Themes from Jupiter -- Holst (arr)

Themes from Unfinished Symphony -- Schubert (arr)

Turning Point -- Holfeldt

Carnival -- Tchaikovsky (arr)


Concert Orch (25 min)

Ancient Echoes of Time -- Wagner

Scherzo Pizzicato -- Tchaik (arr)

Serenade, mvmt. 3 -- Dvorak

Tannhauser March -- Wagner (arr)

Sleigh Ride-- Anderson


Symphony Orch (30 min)

Symphony 4, movement 3 & (excerpt from) 4 -- Brahms

Les Preludes -- Liszt

*Brahms 4 finale will be performed in its complete form at Orch Night, 2016. *

Final Senior Vote:  Brahms - 23   Liszt- 13