December concerts


Aubrey                       19th                     9:45
Clinton                       18th                     1:00
Confed                        20th                  10:45
Kitchener                   17th                     9:45
Maywood                   20th                    1:40
Montecito                   13th                    9:45
Nelson                         20th                   1:00
South Slope                20th                 12:30
Suncrest                      19th                    1:30
Twelfth Avenue          18th                   9:45

letter home:

Monday, December 2, 2019
Dear parents of Mr. Denroche’s band students,

What:   “Squeak and Squawk”/meet the teacher concerts  
Dates:  Monday, December 16th at Confederation Park – 4715 Pandora Street 
                 Thursday, December 19th at Nelson Elementary – 4850 Irmin Street
Time:   6:20 p.m. arrival, 6:30 p.m. concert (until approximately 7:15 p.m.)

Please bring a music stand from home or school!

The students and I look forward to the opportunity to demonstrate what has been learned in Band this year by inviting you to an informal concert.  I know many students have after school activities so attendance is encouraged but not mandatory.  Students may attend either or, preferably, both evenings.  I will be seating by instrument, not by school, so this is a great opportunity for my students to meet other musicians!   Arriving by 6:20 will facilitate the set up and starting on time.  And, please help stack chairs at the end of the concert.  

I appreciate all of you for making this experience possible for your children by renting/obtaining an instrument, in some cases providing your children with the opportunity to take private lessons, and of course, listening to the progression from those amazing first sounds to a level that enables your children to be part of a whole which I hope will be a pleasant surprise to you. 

Treats!  Party anyone?  Please bring a treat to share with others following the concert. 
Books, etc.  Finally, a thank you to those of you who have paid for your method book ($12), supplies, and/or instrument user fee if I made arrangements for your child to play a School District #41 instrument.  If you have yet to pay, cash or a cheque payable to Nelson Elementary is now due.  I will give your child a receipt if you are paying by cash. 

Concert dress is casual, see over for program order.           
I look forward to meeting you,

Mr. D

Please encourage your child to play the following for you as we will be performing:     NEW ORDER as of 12/06! 

14        Rolling Along             intro: flutes
17        Hot Cross Buns           intro: oboes
18        Go Tell Aunt Rhodie  intro: electric basses, bass clarinets, trombones, baritones
23        March Steps                intro: trumpets
25        Lightly Row                intro: alto, tenor saxophones, horns
29        Remix                          intro: clarinets
30        London Bridge           duet
31        A Mozart Melody      
34        Doodle All Day         
42        Skip To My Lou        
49        Hey, Ho! Nobody’s Home

Ode to Joy, arr. B. Wilson
Machu Pichu
Ode to Three Ships
Mr. D’s Power Rock
G-Force 5!
Jingle Bells, arr. B. Wilson

If your band has not learned any of the above, sit back and enjoy listening to those who have.  Everybody knows Jingle Bells and that will be our grand finale!

Thank you to everyone who has already let me know they will be there, 
Let’s Go Band!














Please fill in, DETACH, and return the following form to Mr. D by Wednesday, December 11th

Please indicate whether your child will be attending and

approximately how many people will join us in the audience so we can set up chairs



– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –Please detach here  – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –


Name of school: ______________________  Instrument: ____________________


My child, _________________________________  will be attending:


 “Squeak and Squawk” at Confed Park El. Monday, Dec 16th     Yes __________

We plan on having __________ family members and friends attending the concert


 “Squeak and Squawk” at Nelson El. Thursday, Dec 19th            Yes __________

We plan on having __________ family members and friends attending the concert

Practicing at home

My wife’s violin teacher, Raphael Spiro, told her the definition of practice is “correct repetition”.  Here is how to make the best use of your time!

– having regular practice times is best
– 100 minutes per week is the goal (unless you can play the assigned music correctly and with a beautiful sound in less time 😉 )
– When you are playing and make a mistake (EVERYBODY DOES!!!), don’t go back to the beginning.  Go back a few notes and play through the notes you had difficulty with until you can play the passage correctly
– Don’t always start at the beginning.  Start by playing the last two measures, then the last four, then the last eight, . . .

(with help from violinist extraordinaire and master teacher, my wife Nancy DiNovo)

The goal of this practice method is to create mastery and confidence in your playing.  At any point, if you move on from one step to the next and find you’re not ready, repeat the previous step before moving forward.

  1. Name the notes – say the letter name of the note out loud
  2. Name the notes in rhythm
  3. Name the notes in rhythm while fingering the notes (even better if you can sing the correct pitches at the same time!)
  4. Play the passage very slowly three times.  Pay attention to what your muscles have to do to make the passage work smoothly and efficiently.  Include all accents and articulations.
  5. Then, play the same passage four times under tempo with full musicality: dynamics and markings as well as musical expression while paying attention to the connections between notes where appropriate.  Strive to improve each one making each repetition more fluent and tonally beautiful than the previous one.
  6. Perform the passage perfectly ten times in tempo.  You will probably notice that after five or six repetitions the passage will start to sound even more fluent.

FYI – apparently the magic number for you to have mastered ANY skill is to do it 17 times in a row without making a mistake.  Yes, numbers 4 through 6 add up to 17!


And, two quotes from Carrie Brownstein, musician, actor, and author
“I found community and belonging through creativity and music”.
And, on being able to do both comedy and music, “I think I wouldn’t have come to comedy and been able to do a lot of improvisation if it weren’t for music.  I think that helped me gain a lot of confidence.  It gave me faith in the spontaneous moment, in the unknown, about going somewhere that could be unexpected where you might fail.”

Keep practicing – you never know where it will lead!