Band Basics
Summer Band
Game Days
Competition Days
Concert Season
Jazz Season
Region/State Band

Band Basics

  How does a band parent stay informed?
  1. Sign up for the Parent Remind: Directors will send out pertinent information with Remind texts. For parents of younger band students, we recommend that in addition to the Parent Remind you also sign up for the Student Remind so that you can help your student adjust to the responsibilities of High School Band. Please email the directors or the Band Booster Club for the Remind codes.
  2. Check the Band Calendar: The band calendar has the most up to date information about events and activities. Make sure to click on the actual activity to see additional information. We have created a link to make subscribing to our calendar a breeze.
  3. Attend the Booster Meetings: Booster club meetings will be announced and usually take place at 7pm in the Band Hall. These meetings are a great way to stay informed!
  Do I need my own instrument?

Most instruments do need to be privately owned/rented and maintained by the student. There are a select few instruments (ie: tuba, euphonium, mellophones, etc) that are school owned and rented to students. If you are unsure whether or not you need to purchase/rent your own instrument, please email one of the directors.

  What is the time commitment for band?

Per Texas State (UIL) Law, before/after school activities are only allowed to practice for 8 hours per week once school has begun. During the summer, we have a Band Camp that runs during the weeks leading into the school year. These weeks are more intensive to prepare us for the marching season. When school starts, the band will practice after school. During the marching season there are Friday night football game commitments (performances) as well as Saturday Contests (competition) throughout the Fall Semester. The marching season finishes during the first part of November, and then the Band will only play at football games.

  What are the uniform requirements?
  • Uniforms are provided by the band. All alterations will be made by the Booster Club. In addition to their issued uniform students will need: a band shirt, band shorts, marching shoes. All of these items can be purchased at Registration or from a uniform officer.
  • It is also very important that your student have a pair of good athletic shoes for practice. These shoes can be kept in their band locker for them to change into after school if they would like to wear other shoes to school; however, a good pair of athletic shoes is very important in keeping your student in good marching condition on the blacktop.
  Are there any uniform restrictions during marching season?
In order to give our band a cohesive appearance we do have guidelines for student’s appearances while they are on the field:
  1. Students will not wear makeup while in uniform.
  2. Jewelry, hair ribbons & nail polish are not allowed while in uniform.
  3. Hair must be its natural color.
  4. Hair must not touch the collar of the jacket and must be above the top of the ear or pulled behind it. No visible hair on forehead.
  5. Students must be clean shaven while in uniform.
  What is Report Time?

Report time is the designated time that the students must be ready (dressed, full water bottle, instrument, etc.) and in the HHS Band Hall or other assigned area.

  What is the No Pass-No Play Policy?
The Texas Education Agency defines band as a performing art and concert and marching performances are an extension of class time. Attendance at rehearsals and performances is required and is a part of the band grade.
A student will be suspended from participating in any extracurricular activity (marching band activities, pep rallies, parades, UIL solo and ensemble and other competitions) after a six weeks grading period in which a student receives a grade below a 70. The student will remain eligible and responsible for band and technique class requirements including sectionals and performances.
Interim progress reports are issued in the middle of each six weeks period to students who are borderline or failing a class. Students can ‘regain’ eligibility at this time if he/she is passing.
AP students do have the opportunity to apply for a waiver to remain eligible. Please email your student’s counselor for more information about this process.

Summer Band

  What is Summer Band?

In order to get the band prepared for our marching performance, students are required to attend marching practice in the weeks leading up to the beginning of school. Attendance is required for all band students. Students will need to report to summer band with their instrument, full band water jug, good athletic shoes, lunch & snacks, their phone, and sun protection (hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, etc.). Summer Band times will be listed on the Marching Band Calendar.

  Is attendance required?

Yes. It is imperative to the marching programs success to have all students attend Summer Band. Please consult the band calendar for summer band dates, and plan your vacation accordingly.

  Are drinks provided?
No, that is why it is CRUCIAL for your student to bring a FULL BAND water jug with them to camp every day. During the day, there will be opportunities for students to refill their jugs. You are also allowed to send additional drinks with your students, but please avoid sugary beverages.
(Pro Tip: To make ice for your student’s band water jug use a circular ziplock container or quart sized yogurt/cream cheese container. These make larger chunks of ice that fit inside the water jug, and keep the water colder longer.)
  Is lunch provided?

No, lunch is not provided. Students will need to bring their lunch with them. Students are allowed to leave during the lunch break. See schedule for times.

  What type of shoe should my student wear to marching band?
  • In marching band we see many injuries that are a result of improper footwear. In order to protect our students and keep them marching, students should wear a good pair of athletic shoes that provides them with the support they need to have a good foundation on the blacktop. A good pair of athletic shoes will help prevent twisted & rolled ankles, shin splints, sprains and many more injuries.
  • We have come up with Athletic Shoe Recommendations for men & women:
  Can my student wear a hat or sunglasses?

Yes! Students are highly encouraged to bring sun protection. This includes: sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, spf shirts, etc.

Game Days

  What is a typical schedule for game day?
On Game Day the students will:
  • report to the Band Hall after the final bell or release time.
  • eat dinner
  • gather their uniform & instrument
  • load the busses
  • play at the football game
  • load the busses
  • return to HHS
  What does my student need for a game?
On Game Days students need to bring:
  • Band Shorts
  • Show / Section Shirt
  • Black Socks
  • Marching Shoes
  • Water Jug
  • Flip Folder
  • Instrument
  Where should I sit during football games?

Most parents sit in the stands closest to the band. This is a perfect time to wear your Band Spirit Wear!

  Am I allowed to visit my student during football games?

Football games are considered to be an extension of the classroom, and for everyone’s safety adults are not allowed into the band section of the stands. This helps us to keep everyone safe. Students are not allowed to accept outside food and beverages from parents while at football games unless given permission from the Band Director.

  When should I pick up my student after a game?

Students are encouraged to call/text their parents on the way home to the school, but an expected end time will always be posted.

Competition Days

  What are band competitions?

Just like other sports, Marching Band participates in scored contests. These contests usually take place on Saturdays. Competitions are divided into Preliminary Performances and Final Performances. Please consult the Marching Band Calendar for the dates of contests.

  What is the difference between UIL and BOA competitions?
  • UIL is the organization that creates rules for and administers almost all athletic, musical, and academic contests for public primary and secondary schools in Texas. At UIL competitions, schools compete against other schools in the same UIL conference (we are 5A). CLICK HERE to Link to the UIL Scoring Rubric
  • Bands of America is an independent company that hosts competitions throughout the nation. BOA is not connected to the school districts. When competing at BOA bands are assigned to a competing class based on the total enrolled students at each band’s high school enrollment levels (grades 10 through 12). Classes are used to determine preliminary placements and awards. The highest-scoring bands regardless of class advance to finals performance. Class champions who do not advance to finals are invited to perform in exhibition. Link to the BOA scoring rubric:
  What is a typical schedule for a contest day?
Report times will differ for each contest, and you will be able to find schedules on the Marching Band Calendar.
A typical Competition Day Schedule is:
  • report to band hall
  • rehearsal
  • students will gather uniforms & supplies
  • load the busses
  • arrive at the competition site
  • unload
  • rehearse
  • perform in the Preliminary round
  • regroup and take a break (if able)
  • gather for the announcement of awards
  • Finals:
    • If we are selected for Finals: we rehearse, and perform, and wait for the final awards, and then we will head back to the school.
    • If we are not selected for Finals: we load up the students, and head back to the school.
  If the band has a long break between performances, can I take my student home?
No, the entire band stays together until the competition is over.
The time between performances is used to rehearse or for study time.
  Are meals provided?

Yes, meals will be provided on competition days. Meal times will vary according to the competition performance schedule. The schedule will alert families to exactly which meals will be provided. Students are allowed to visit concession stands during long breaks.

  Should I send my student with money?

Yes! If time allows we do allow students to shop for souvenirs.

  Am I allowed to cheer and clap during a competition?

Yes! In fact we encourage you to make some noise for our band! Please read through this document on Competition Etiquette to get the lowdown on competition behavior.

  What criteria is used to judge a marching competition?

MUSIC PERFORMANCE :
How well does the band play? Are they in tune? Are they together? Do they have an “ensemble sound”?

VISUAL PERFORMANCE:
How well do they march? Are they in step? How clean (together) is the color guard work? How is their body carriage? How are the horn angles? How is the spacing?

GENERAL EFFECT:
Is the music conveying a mood or message to the audience? Is the entire visual program conveying a mood or message to the audience? Are the forms and movements readable? How well do both music and visual integrate into a total package that represents the theme?

PERCUSSION:
How clean (together) is the percussion section? Are they playing musically? Is the front ensemble (pit) playing with the rest of the ensemble? How well do they balance with the wind section?

AUXILIARY:
How clean (together) is the color guard? Is their choreography properly reflecting the music? Is the difficulty of the work appropriate for the performers?

Concert Season

  What is concert season?

In the Spring semester the band gears up to participate in the UIL Concert programs. Each band will have 3 pieces that they will perform at the UIL Concert competition.

  What are the uniform requirements for concert season?
  • Uniforms are purchased on your own: girls wear black dresses and boys wear tuxedos. The uniforms are fitted and altered by the parents. All students are required to wear black dress shoes.
  • Boys will have to purchase the additional items: black bow tie, and a pleated tuxedo shirt. These items can be purchased as a bundle at Al’s Formal Wear or Burlingtons
  Am I allowed to attend the UIL Concert performances?

Yes! Parents and friends are encouraged to attend the UIL performance. The dates, times and locations will be published on the Band Calendar and in the Booster Newsletter.

  What is the correct UIL Concert etiquette?
  • Please silence your cell phone before entering the auditorium
  • Only enter the auditorium between performances.
  • You should NOT enter while a band is performing.
  • Please do not talk during performances.
  • Clapping at the end of performances is encouraged.

Region/State Band

  What is region/state band

Just like in middle school band, students in the Hanks High School Band compete in the TMEA All-State (Region Band) process! Although Hanks is a 5A high school, our band students compete on both the 5A & 6A track in this process!

  What musical pieces do the students play?

Students are assigned 3 etudes at the beginning of the year.

  When are auditions?

Auditions are held during the months of December, and January.

  whats the diffrence between middle school and high school TMEA bands?

Perhaps the most exciting difference between the high school & middle school region experience is that, in high school, it doesn’t stop at Region Band / Orchestra! In high school, it’s possible to advance to Area and even State!

  What does the state band entail?

Students who earn membership in the TMEA All-State Band get to travel to San Antonio for 4 days and make music with the finest musicians in the State of Texas!

  How do these students prepare for these auditions?

All students participate in weekly Master Classes (sectionals) throughout the Fall semester to prepare for the auditions.