The RND Music program provides an opportunity for a large number of students to explore and expand on their love of many different types of music. Extracurricular music opportunities include the RND Senior Concert Band, Junior Band, Jazz bands, choirs and many small ensembles. These groups perform at many concerts at the school including well attended fall and spring concerts. The bands also participate every year in the Kiwanis Music Festival, and each year the Senior Concert Band travels to a different city to showcase their talents. They also perform in the school Masses, pep rallies, graduation ceremonies and a number of other events.
RND Music Handbook
The RND music department has been an active part of life at the school for many years. In recent years the main performing ensembles of the school have been the Senior Concert Band, the Junior Band and the Senior Jazz Ensemble. The bands are a place for serious music making where students are challenged to perform at a very high standard. Vocal music is also thriving in recent years. The RND Choir performs regularly in concerts, festivals and Masses.
Music at RND is a large family of musicians involving annually over 250 students or about one quarter of the school. All members of the music department teaching staff are active performers and conductors in the Kingston area.
Excellence in musical performance depends on students attending, being prepared for and working hard at every rehearsal. Rehearsals dates and times follow a regular pattern for each ensemble (see Band and Choirs below). Students are expected to make an honest commitment to attend rehearsals and concerts.
The school will provide instruments, however at times it can be difficult for so many students to share the instruments. Students are encouraged, if possible, to rent an instrument or buy their own especially if they play flute, clarinet, trumpet or trombone. Rental forms will be handed out to all grade 9 students within the first few weeks of school, and anyone else wishing to rent an instrument. The school deals with the following music stores for rentals, repairs and accessories.
Musicare – Located near Ottawa they have a full range of band instruments for sale or rent and musical instrument accessories for sale. They sell, among others, the Selmer line of instruments. They have a sales representative visit the school every second Friday. Instrument rental prices here for used instruments are very reasonable.
Renaissance/Long & McQuade– Located in Kingston they are a full service music store and deal with Yamaha musical instruments. Students and parents can shop there for instruments and accessories and a full rental department.
Harknett – Located north of Toronto they deal in Jupiter musical instruments and are a great store to purchase sheet music.
If you do choose to use one of the school's instruments, you will be expected to take proper care of the instrument, and return it to the music room so other students may use it.
Concert uniform for the Senior Concert Band in formal concerts is based on the school uniform and is as follows:
Girls - black shoes, black or navy blue tights, kilts*, uniform shirt, uniform vest
Boys – black shoes, black socks, uniform pants, uniform shirt, uniform vest, tie
* Girls may choose to wear uniform pants
The uniform vest is the short sleeved V-neck blue knitted vest
Concert uniform will be worn for all concerts unless otherwise stated. Failure to wear the proper uniform will result in not performing at that concert. For some concerts the uniform will be less formal and will include the band "T-Shirt".
For the other ensembles the concert dress is generally the same as the Senior Band but will be finalized before each concert.
Music Department Ensemble Fee
RND Sr. Band – A nominal membership fee that covers some bussing, a t-shirt and other musical expenses. Students only pay the fee once and can participate in as many ensembles as they get accepted into. The fee amount will be announced at the beginning of each year (usually $25).
Students Not Registered in Music Class
In some cases it is possible for students not taking instrumental music to perform in the RND bands. These students need to be highly motivated and they need to practice regularly. Often these students take private lessons on their instrument to maintain an acceptable playing level.
Instrumental students not taking music who are members of performing groups will be required to provide their own instrument (rental or purchase) if they are not registered in an instrumental music class if they play flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet or trombone. Low brass and percussion instruments are provided by the school.
Each year at the end of May, the school holds the annual CAPPA Awards for the arts. CAPPA stands for Creative and Practical Performing Arts. Class awards are given out to students for excellence in arts classes, while major awards are given for things like Sr. Band, Jr. Band, Vocal Music, Yearbook, Drama, and many others. The Principal's award in the arts is also presented for overall arts contribution.
The RND Senior Concert Band is the school's premier performing ensemble. They have placed first in the Kingston, Kiwanis Festival numerous times, performed at Musicfest Canada and in Festivals in Cleveland, Orlando, Washington, New York City, London England and in Boston. In the Boston and New York festivals they were awarded "Outstanding Band Group" awards. In 2012 the Senior Band performed to critical acclaim at the Heritage Festival of Gold at Orchestra Hall in Chicago.
The Senior Band is made up of mostly grade 11 and 12 students, but also includes some grade 10 students. Auditions will be held at the beginning of each year for any students interested. Students should be enrolled in music classes, or have taken music in past years. The Senior Band rehearses on Mondays after school from 2:45-4:00. Additional rehearsals may be scheduled on Tuesdays later in the year to prepare for festival performances.
The Junior Band is made up of grade 9 and 10 students. No audition is necessary to be in the Junior Band, but students should be enrolled in music classes. The Junior Band also participates in the Kiwanis music festival and has won the Junior Band competitive class in the festival ten times. They also travel to Toronto each year to perform at the Canada's Wonderland School Music Festival. The Junior Band rehearses Wednesdays at lunch.
Grade 9 Band
Later in the year, around April, a Grade 9 band is formed for any grade 9 music student who wishes to participate. The Grade 9 band plays at spring concerts and sometimes tour elementary schools. Often, members of the Grade 9 band will also play with the Junior Band.
The Junior and Senior Jazz bands are for students who play a Jazz instrument (saxophones, trumpets, trombones, guitar, bass, piano, percussion) and wish to further develop their musical talents through Jazz music. Rehearsals for the Jazz bands will be determined at the beginning of the year but are usually held on Thursdays.
RND music also promotes chamber music. In the past few years chamber ensembles have included: the Flute Ensemble, the RND Clarinet Quartet and the 2016 Trombone Quartet. Some small ensembles are started by students and feature student arrangements and compositions. These ensembles perform in concerts and in festivals.
Besides training vocalists for the annual school musical the music department also provides an Orchestra to accompany the shows. This music is very challenging and participation in the Pit Orchestra is by invitation as the instrumentation changes from year to year. Past shows have included: Fiddler on the Roof, Beauty and the Beast, Les Miserable, South Pacific, Hairspray, Guys and Dolls and Mary Poppins (to name a few!).
The RND Festival Choir is a group of dedicated musicians with a love for singing. They sing a variety of music from classical choral music, to contemporary "glee" style songs. The Festival Choir's beautiful harmonies are heard at the Kiwanis Music festival, and in 2011 they competed in the Heritage Festival in Orlando, Florida and received a Silver standing. The Festival Choir is an offshoot of the RND Choir.
The RND choir is responsible for providing the music for our school Masses. The choir practices at lunchtimes once a week. This choir aims for a high level of musicality and adds greatly to the school liturgy.
Most years Regi mounts a major musical production. The music department is responsible for training the chorus and the lead roles in the musical. Many of the students involved in the musical are students in the music department. Our most challenging musical to sing to date was Les Miserables which we produced in 2009. Other recent shows include: Into the Woods (2018), The Wizard of Oz (2017), The Little Mermaid (2016), Mary Poppins (2015), Pirates of Penzance (2014), Guys and Dolls (2013), Anything Goes (2012), Hairspray (2011), South Pacific (2010), Les Miserables (2009) and Fiddler on the Roof (2008).
Guitar classes are offered at RND in grades 11 and 12 for those interested in learning how to play guitar, or wanting to improve on their current level of guitar playing. Members of the guitar classes traditionally perform each year at the CAPPA awards.
Mr. Hugh Johnston
Mr. Johnston is the Arts Department Head at Regiopolis-Notre Dame. He has been teaching music for over 25 years and has been at RND since 1998. Before coming to Regi Mr. Johnston taught in the Toronto area, Brockville and Bathurst, New Brunswick. He holds degrees in music and education from Queen's University and the University of London (England) and a Diploma in Wind Ensemble Conducting from the University of Calgary. Mr. Johnston has performed on trumpet with BrassWerks and the Kingston Symphony. Mr. Johnston is the conductor of the RND Senior Concert Band and the Junior Band and musical director of the school musical.
Ms. Justine Lord
Ms. Lord started teaching music at RND in 2009 after graduating with a Bachelor of Music and a Bachelor of Education from Queen's University. While at Queen's she distinguished herself by being Musical Director of both QMT (Queen's Musical Theatre) and the Queen's Student Opera. Ms. Lord's talents and expertise make her able to teach instrumental music and vocal music with equal proficiency. Ms. Lord is the conductor of the Jazz Bands and Choirs here at RND.
Mr. Peter Stelter
Although primarily a history teacher, Mr. Stelter's ability on the guitar and performance experience make him the teacher who can balance theory and performance in this very practical subject area for grade 11 and 12 students. Mr. Stelter's performance experiences range from being the nightly entertainment at a Halliburton resort, local bands, musical theatre performer and playing guitar at school Masses. Mr. Stelter performs on guitar with the RND Choir.
Grade 8 Students
Instrumental music at RND is offered from Grade 9-12 and over a hundred students enroll in grade 9 instrumental music each year. No past musical experience is necessary to take grade 9 music. That being said, students who do have musical experience also take music so that they may learn a new instrument or further develop skills on a band instrument that they may already play. On the first day of class, students choose an instrument that they will play for the rest of the semester.
There are many opportunities for those who choose to get involved in music at RND. Each year, the Junior Band plays at Canada's Wonderland, and the Senior Concert Band performs in the Heritage Music Festival in a different city each year. Past trips have been to Chicago, Orlando, New York City, Boston, and Cleveland. Both the Senior and Junior Bands also play in the Kiwanis Music festival here in Kingston.
Taking music is a great way to get involved at RND. Joining band is a great way to meet new people, improve on your musical skills, and create an enjoyable high school experience.
Grade 9 students wishing to take music will register for AMU 1O1.
RND also offers International Baccalaureate (I.B.) music. An intensive performance, composition and music history course. Check with the I.B. department for further information.
Instrumental Music at RND (Includes I.B.)
Grade 9 AMU 101 (Open)
Grade 10 AMU 201(Open)
Grade 11 AMU 3M1 (U/C) AMU 3M1S (I.B.) AMU 3O1 (Open)
Grade 12 AMU 4 M1 (U/C) AMU 4M1H (I.B.) AMU 4E1 (Open)
Queen's Park Ontario Song - On the Senior Concert Band's trip to Toronto in 2006 they performed in the lobby of Queen's Park, the Ontario Parliament. They performed A Place to Stand, a place to Grow (Ontari-ari-ari-o!) the unofficial theme song of Ontario made famous at Expo '67 in Montreal.
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-In May of 2008 the Senior Concert Band performed at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. They played rock favorites such as Stairway to Heaven, Smoke on the Water and Rock Around the Clock.
Bandaid – In 2009 the RND music department applied for and received a $10000 Bandaid Grant from MusiCounts. We used the money to purchase many instruments including a drum set, saxophones, an oboe, a French horn, a nice silver euphonium and a few clarinets. It was a great boost to the music program.
Musicounts Teacher of the Year – Mr. Johnston was named the 2011-12 MusiCounts Teacher of the year. The award was presented to him at the 2012 Juno Awards in Ottawa by singer songwriter Johnny Reid. In May of 2012 Johnny came to the school to further celebrate the award and perform for the school in one of Regi's most memorable assemblies.
Festival of Gold Orchestra Hall-In 2012 the Senior Band performed at the Heritage Festival of Gold at Orchestra Hall in Chicago, home of the Chicago symphony.
Glee wins Silver – In the Glee club's first international competition in Orlando Florida in 2011 they performed amazingly and achieved a Silver standing. Their singing of Livin' on a Prayer, Viva la Vita and I Can See Clearly Now featured full on choreo. Look for this performance on YouTube!
Wonderland 18 times – RND bands have performed at the Canada's Wonderland Music Festival 18 times!
Carnegie Hall – In March 2013 the RND Senior Band performed at the National Band and Orchestra Festival and the world famous Carnegie Hall. A highlight of the performance was the world premier of the piece "Dialogues" by Kingston composer John W. N. Palmer.
London Calling – In April of 2014 the RND Sr. Concert band headed to the U.K. and performed at Cadogan Hall, London, home of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. This was the first performance overseas by an RND ensemble. The band receives best wishes for this trip from Kathleen Wynne, premiere of Ontario, astronaut and musician Chris Hadfield and Kingston Symphony conductor Evan Mitchell.
Broadway Gala – In 2013 the Sr. Band started organizing the annual Broadway Gala in May of each year. The concert features instrumental ensembles and instrumental and vocal solos from Broadway through the ages. We will see you in May!