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Ammount of marching rehearsal

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#1 gordon.cooke



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Posted 31 March 2016 - 02:22 PM

Was wondering how much time people might see as a minimum fir a viable marching band in a high school?

Situation. School had a marching band back in the 60s/70s when mandatory marching band was pretty much normal as a class.
Then the marching band started back up in the early 90s as after school extra curricular (concert band was always a class for credit). That band was joint from the entire district, 2 high schools and 2 junior highs (so 7-12). Pulling from a total student population of about 6,000 we had about 50 students in marching band at peak. Then the school hit budget troubles (one year cancelled ALL extra curicular and sports for half a year) and marching band never really recovered. Like a dozen to 20 students. Limped along fighting too exist, district cut funding and band boosters were able to fund raise the director's stipend for a few years. Then it folded a few years ago (director stipend was only like $1000 for the year).

Id like to try and restart the marching program. There is a new administrator that may be receptive but funding is a major stumbling block in this district.
Obviously it depends on number of kids, but could a once a week rehearsal for say two hours, plus select saturdays be viable to get things going? (Given that students have an in class concert band program every day that would help basic musicality)
When I was a kid I was in a drum corps that was only once a week and that seemed adequate for parading at least. There are now no marching bands or corps in the area and the community is starting to feel how sad the parades are with no music.

Any thoughts on if a single band from two or four different schools (which saves money on director and other costs) versus just having a marching band from a single school (better for school spirit/identity)? Would seem to alloww a bigger band with low interest, but I wonder if the identity issue might drive the lowered interest. Thoughts?