Arts

Band

The NDHS Band Program Tradition:

The Band Program has been a part of Notre Dame High School since 1947 and holds the honor of being the school's first student activity. Since that time, the band has earned a stellar reputation for its standard of excellence:
  • The Symphonic Band routinely earns Unanimous Superior ratings every year at SCSBOA Festivals.
  • The Percussion Ensemble has won multiple gold medals at SC-PA Championships.
  • The Notre Dame Dance Guard Team has won multiple gold medals at WGASC Championships.
  • The Irish Knight Band (NDHS's marching band) has won countless awards for Band, Drum Major, and Auxiliary (Dance Guard) at SCSBOA Band Reviews and Parade competitions throughout Southern California.

The Band Program offers classes for students of all ability levels, all of which earn Visual/Performing Arts credit towards graduation.
  • Introductory level classes are available for students who want to learn a new instrument. Band I Winds for woodwind and brass instruments, and Percussion I for percussion instruments.
  • Students who already play woodwind, brass, or percussion instruments can audition to be placed in the Band II (Concert Band) or Percussion Ensemble classes. Band II students can advance to the Band III (Wind Ensemble) class as early as their sophomore year.
  • The Jazz Band class is a big band style jazz ensemble for students that play trumpet, trombone, saxophone, guitar, piano, bass, and drum set.
  • Students interested in dance can enroll in the Dance Prop Production class and join the Dance Guard Team, Notre Dame's competitive color guard.
  • Students in grades 4 to 8 can join the Saturday Elementary Band Program, a true community band available to all students of all ability levels.

News from the Band Program

Irish Knight Band in Full Recruitment Mode

The band, percussion, and dance guard are currently recruiting prospective students for the class of 2026. If you know any students applying to Notre Dame for the Fall 2022 Semester, tell them to contact Mr. Borok (borok@ndhs.org) for woodwinds and brass, Mr. Pagnotta (pagnotta@ndhs.org) for percussion, and Ms. Alcuran (alcuran@ndhs.org) for dance.

Basketball Pep Band Finishes the 2022 Season

February 3rd will mark the end of the regular season for the Varsity Boys and Girls home league games at which the basketball pep band plays. The band will also play at any home playoff games for the varsity basketball teams, and possibly travel if either team makes it to the championship game, depending on COVID rules.

Festival, Winter Guard, and Percussion Seasons Begin

In February, the different parts of the Irish Knight Band split off to start working on their individual Spring Semester activities. The Concert Band and Wind Ensemble will begin working on their Concert and Festival music, the Dance Guard will start working on their Winter Guard show, and the Percussion Ensemble kicks things up another gear as they get into their Indoor Concert Percussion show. Festivals, Concerts, and Dance Guard and Percussion Ensemble competitions will begin in March. Check the IKB Google Calendar for performance dates.

Saturday Elementary Band - Final Month for Accepting New Students

The Saturday Elementary Band Program will continue for the Spring 2022 semester. If you already play a band instrument and you missed the Fall semester, February is the last month to join the Squires Band for the Spring semester. If you don’t play an instrument yet, it’s unfortunately too late to join the Beginning Band class. Please look ahead to September 2022 when we start the next year of Beginning Band. All Saturday band classes will be held outdoors on the tennis courts. All rehearsals will adhere to COVID guidelines, including temperature checks, physical distancing, and wearing masks while not playing.

Alumni Band Update

All Alumni Band activities are still suspended at this time. Please keep checking your emails for periodic updates as things progress. We look forward to having our alumni band members back on campus as soon as we are permitted to do so. Any IKB alumni interested in the status of the Alumni Band as we move through the spring may contact Alumni Band Director, John Combes, at combes@ndhs.org.

Just Announced: Saturday Band Program Returns!

The Irish Knight Band (IKB)

The Irish Knight Band is NDHS's marching band program. The IKB serves as the pep-band at all home and away varsity football games, home league boys and girls varsity basketball games, on-campus pep rallies, and various admissions events. The IKB also competes at parade competitions called Band Reviews. The marching season begins with Band Camp in August (typically two weeks prior to the first day of school), and ends around Thanksgiving break with the end of the football and band review seasons. The IKB will also march at the Granada Hills Holiday Parade in early December, and perform at Disneyland in January. All students in the Band I Winds, Percussion I, Band II, Band II, Band III, Percussion Ensemble, and Dance Prop Production courses are required to participate in the Irish Knight Band.

Spring 2021 Band Concert

Spring 2021 Percussion Concert

Courses Offered

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  • Band I Winds

    This is a beginning winds class. Students will learn to play a wind instrument. Students taking Band I are part of the band program at Notre Dame and will participate as part of the marching band pageantry unit. Students also participate in parades, band festivals, and attend Band Camp before the school year beginning.

    Prerequisites/Comments - 
    Student 9-11 who wish to learn a wind instrument. 10th and 11th-grade students need the consent of the instructor to enroll. An instrument is provided by the school. Should a student wish to learn an instrument not available from the school, he/she will have to provide it. (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Band II (Concert Band)

    This is a class for students of intermediate ability with previous experience on their instrument. The Concert Band will join with the Wind Ensemble to form the Symphonic Band. Members of Band II will perform as part of the Marching Band. Students also participate in parades, band festivals, and attend Band Camp before the school year beginning.

    Prerequisites/Comments - All students who meet the proficiency requirements may enroll in this course. Consent of the instructor is required. This course may be repeated for credit. (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Band III (Wind Ensemble)

    This is a class for students who demonstrate the ability to prepare and perform more advanced music literature. Students may be required to prepare solo or ensemble compositions outside of class. Members of Band III will perform as part of the combined Symphonic Band and the Marching Band. Students also participate in parades, band festivals, and attend Band Camp before the school year beginning.

    Prerequisites/Comments - Demonstrated proficiency in the instruments to study and perform advanced composition pieces. Consent of the instructor is required. This course may be repeated for credit. (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Percussion I

    This is a percussion class for students with beginner to intermediate percussion skills. Students will audition in the spring for placement in Band I or the Percussion Ensemble class. Students are expected to continue in the band program at Notre Dame and will participate as part of the marching band pageantry unit. Students need not be able to read music. Students also participate in parades, band festivals, and attend Band Camp before the school year beginning.

    Prerequisites/Comments - Students 9-11. Entering 9th-grade students may enroll and will be called for an audition. 10th and 11th-grade students need the consent of the instructor to enroll. Instruments are provided by the school.  (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Percussion Ensemble

    Percussion students with demonstrated skill proficiency may enroll in Percussion Ensemble. The course will emphasize percussion performance skill development. Students will form the marching percussion section of the Irish Knight Band, provide percussion for the concert band, wind ensemble, jazz band, and basketball spirit band, as well as perform in concert percussion ensembles. Students also participate in parades, band festivals, and attend Band Camp before the school year beginning.

    Prerequisites/Comments -
    Audition/Consent of the Band Director or the Percussion Instructor is required. The class size may be limited. Entering 9th-grade students should enroll in Percussion I and must audition for Percussion ensemble. This course may be repeated for credit. (UC “f” VPA) 
  • Jazz Band Independent Study

    This is a performance-oriented class designed to allow members to meet together for the study and rehearsal playing Jazz genre music. The class meets during x-periods not scheduled for other school activities. The preparation of music outside of class is expected. Performances may be scheduled outside of the school day and are a required part of the class.

    Prerequisites/Comments -
    The written consent of the instructor is required. A letter grade will be given that counts toward the cumulative GPA and Honor Roll. (UC “f” VPA) 

Faculty

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