The marching band activity has continued to grow here at West Deptford High School and we are still advancing. Over years, the WDHS Marching Band has established itself as one of the very best competitive marching bands in the North Eastern United States! The West Deptford Marching Band (WDMB) has won the Atlantic Coast Championships 9 of the last 10 years!
For students, the experiences gained from this activity go far beyond learning how to play music. Lifelong skills such as being responsible, building self-esteem, learning to lead, how to motivate, sharing, budgeting time, and discovering what a group can do by working together all come into play in this activity. While working together, students make friendships that will build into a strong network of supporters, helpers, and encouragers that will always be there for them when they need them most.
The marching band family has no bounds. We are always looking for people who share our beliefs:
· Together we can achieve anything.
· Everyone is capable of great things.
· Dedication and hard work are key ingredients to success.
Our motto “Today’s preparation determines tomorrow’s achievement” sets the tone for our band. We believe in this concept and want to share it with as many students as possible. The results are tremendous and lead to outstanding musical performances that every member will be proud to share. These are just some ways the WDHS marching band family is special.
HOW DO YOU BECOME A PART OF THE WEST DEPTFORD MARCHING BAND?
At this time you only need to "signup."
By this point in time we would have normally had several open rehearsal events, but due to the national emergency we have plans on hold. Interested students should click the button below to be taken to our online band registration form. All current 7th-11th grade students who live in WD Twp. are eligible to participate. This information will be used to help us in our planning for the upcoming season.
Membership Opportunities for students currently in 7th-11th grade include:
- Color Guard
- Percussion (Mallets)
- Electric Bass Guitar
- French Horn
Note to current 7th grade students: Students are offered the opportunity to participate in the HS marching band during their 8th grade year, but this is reserved for advanced young musicians who are ready to move on to the HS level. With the exception of color guard, 8th grade students who want to be a part of the HS marching band are required to have experience and will be asked to play an appropriate audition.
NOTE: Filling out this form simply indicates INTEREST ONLY and does not commit any student to participate.
As there are many unknowns at this time, we are short on answers as to when we will begin preparing/rehearsing. All we ask is that everyone remain patient and reasonable. We do not know when we will be able to begin rehearsals. Proper notice will be given once we are granted permissions to resume. Once we get the green light, you can bet that we will hit the ground running, eager to provide our members with a great experience.
Below is some information we would "normally provide" but may or may not be relevant during this unprecedented time. This information can change anytime. It is purely provided as basic FYI.
SUMMER BAND REHEARSALS AND BAND CAMP
The marching band begins regular rehearsals in mid-July. During these summer rehearsals, the band undergoes essential training and begins to rehearsal separate segments of the fall show. Day Camp, which is held in mid-August, is the band’s preparation for Band Camp. All regular summer rehearsals and Day Camp are held at Oakview Elementary School.
Band Camp is the most important part of the marching band’s season. Band Camp is a five-day trip to Camp Ramblewood (located in Darlington, Maryland) where the band learns the majority the show and begins to put it all together. Its during these days the band learns to work as a team, develops friendships, and builds life-long survival skills. Both Day Camp and Band Camp are necessary for all members. Please contact Mr. Kershaw if possible conflicts arise with family vacations or activities as soon as possible.
Important 2020 Camp Dates (ALL TENTATIVE)
· Day Camp: August 10-13
· Band Camp: August 16-20
Notes about the Summer Schedule:
· The complete summer schedule can be found on the marching band’s web site.
· Both Day Camp and Band Camp dates are confirmed and will not change.
· Please make every effort to adjust vacations around the Camp dates. Your cooperation in this matter will be very much appreciated and result with all members achieving success.
We believe that competition is an integral component of every band program. Competition develops poise, character, discipline, and nurtures the musical development of each individual member. Students engaged in a group endeavor involving competitive performance often learn values such as teamwork and group building, while learning to place the group above themselves. It is our wish to share these ideals with all West Deptford members, our neighboring school districts, and our communities so as to foster a greater understanding and support for the students in our bands and all of the other performing arts.
BAND PARENTS ORGANIZATION
Our Band Parents Organization supports the music programs of the high school throughout the year in many capacities. Through fundraising drives, event organization, and activities this organization has proven to be one of the strongest parents organizations in the school.
All parents are encouraged to participate in the organization’s efforts which help enable the West Deptford HS Music Program to succeed. This group meets on the first Monday of each month at 8PM in the high school band room. Most meetings last approximately 45-60 minutes.
Come out and be involved!!!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q. Can you participate in marching band and fall sports?
A. Yes, most sports schedules do not conflict with the marching band’s rehearsals and performances. It is the responsibility of the student to coordinate schedules.
Q. Do you need to know how to play an instrument to be involved?
A. Yes & No—Yes, any current 7th grade musician would need to know how to play an instrument to be considered. We do allow HS students to start learning with no prior experience & the color guard is primarily comprised of non-instrument playing members. See Mr. Kershaw about performing opportunities available.
Q. Are there auditions for marching band?
A. Yes & No. There isn’t a formal audition process for incoming WDHS students. Current 7th grade musicians who want to be a part of the marching band will have a modest playing audition in July to demonstrate their instrumental abilities. There are no auditions for color guard at this time.
Q. Does the marching band travel?
A. Yes, the band travels extensively throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Delaware performing and competing. The band also takes two major overnight trips each year. One is the Band Camp trip to Maryland in August; the second is a touring, performing trip in the spring.
Q. Can students who live in West Deptford Twp but do not attend West Deptford High School participate in the WDMB?
A. Yes. Students who attend private schools or GCIT but live in West Deptford Twp. can participate fully in the WDMB.
INFORMATION LOCATIONS & CONTACT INFORMATION
All WDHS Marching Band related questions should be forwarded to our Director, Mr. Kershaw
Mr. Thomas Kershaw - Marching Band Director
West Deptford High School
1600 Old Crown Point Road
West Deptford, NJ 08093