Band members are required to attend all rehearsal and performances. As a co-curricular course, rehearsals and performances are part of the educational process. Absences affect not only the individual who is absent, but also the entire ensemble. An absence necessitates repeating educational instruction when the student returns, as well as eliminating the opportunity to develop blend, balance, and precision with the other students in the ensemble. Students must be on time for all band functions. Learning to be early (on time) now will establish a lifelong habit that is critical to success.
Excused Absence From a Rehearsal: Except in cases of extreme emergency or illness, band members will not be excused from rehearsals. In case of illness, students are expected to contact the band director () as early as possible so that substitutions or replacements can be made. Appointments, meetings, work, vacations, babysitting, homework, studying, etc. will not be valid excuses for missing a rehearsal. A written excuse from the parent or guardian is due within two days of the absence. If you anticipate an unavoidable absence from rehearsal, please submit a written request to Mr. Uhrich
prior to the intended absence. All absences affect a studentʹ′s grade because of lost instruction time that cannot be ʺ″made up.ʺ″ Two or more absences may result in that individual being placed on alternate status.
Unexcused Absence From a Rehearsal: Any student with an unexcused absence from a rehearsal will receive a zero for that rehearsal grade. An unexcused absence may result in the student being placed on alternate status. Rehearsal grades cannot be made up.
Tardy to Rehearsals / Performances: Attendance will be taken at the beginning of a rehearsal or performance. If a student is habitually late for rehearsals they may be placed on alternate status and their participation grade will be lowered. In addition to a lowered grade, any student arriving late for a performance will lose their third-quarter break (Marching Canes) and may forfeit the opportunity to perform (All Ensembles).
Absence From a Performance: Performances are major grades. Any absence that is not brought to the attention of Mr. Uhrich for approval prior to the performance will be considered unexcused. Unexcused absences count as zeros for a major grade, and may potentially result in the individualʹ′s removal from the Band Program. If you anticipate an unavoidable absence from a performance, please submit a written request to Mr. Uhrich at least one month prior to the intended absence.
Marching Canes Marching Camp: All students wishing to be members of the Mount Dora High School Band Program must plan to attend Summer Band Camps. Students who miss all or part of Band Camp will be placed on alternate status and must acquire the needed performance skills and await the opening of a show position before being allowed to perform. Alternate status does not relieve the student from his/her rehearsal, performance, or financial obligations to the organization. See the calendar for dates and times.
Alternate Status (Marching Canes): It is imperative that all members of the Mount Dora High School Band Program be present at all rehearsals and performances. We understand that students get sick and that unforeseen emergencies may come up. However, our success as an organization will be dependent on our attendance. Even one person that is missing from a rehearsal or performance affects all other members. Each member is relied upon heavily to maintain their responsibilities in the drill - we cannot improve the show or make changes when we have ʺ″holesʺ″ in our drill at rehearsals.
ʺ″Holesʺ″ at performances drastically affect the confidence of the performing members around that missing person, which in turn affects the confidence of the entire ensemble. We also lose important musical elements from missing members - the performance simply does not sound the same without them! Everyone is important!
In an effort to maintain the quality of the Mount Dora High School Marching Canes organization, we make use of ʺ″alternatesʺ″ when and where necessary. Alternates are students that are members of the Marching Canes, but they do not have a designated position in the show for one or more musical selections. Students are placed on alternate status for a number of reasons: they may have missed part or all of a summer camp, they may have missed a rehearsal unexcused, they may be chronically tardy to rehearsals or performances, they may be involved in another sport or club at school, or they may simply have just moved into the area and be a new student at Mount Dora. In some cases, a student may have attended all summer rehearsals, but there may be an overabundance of certain instruments in a given year for the number of spots on the field that have been allotted. It is our goal to get our alternate worked into the show at some point, provided that there have been no problems with the student and that the drill allows for the addition of the student and the drill coordinate.
Alternates are required to be at rehearsals and performances, as most of these students will perform at some point. Alternates are members of the Marching Canes, and are therefore responsible for learned material. It is also important to remember that the Mount Dora Marching Canes may spend a lot of money to have the drill for the show professionally written. The only way for us to experience the greatest educational return and level of achievement is for every position in the drill to be occupied at rehearsals and performances.