Orchestra Classes

Instruments taught are violin, viola, cello, and string bass 

Middle School Orchestra Beginning Strings

This course is for students with no prior instrumental music experience. Students prepare for participation in performing ensembles and develop technical skills necessary to perform Grade 1 Level music, a performance level established by the National Association for Music Education and not a reference to first grade. Basic instrumental skills are developed by performing a variety of music. Students are taught the elements of musical form, terms and symbols, tone production, instrument care and maintenance, and the importance of consistent practice habits. Cultural context of the music and its historical significance as they relate to performance is studied. Students may attend live performances and perform in public.  Electric bass and guitar students may consider string bass. 

Middle School Orchestra 1 (Intermediate Orchestra)

Intermediate Orchestra provides an exciting large group experience and a seamless continuation for students with one or more years of elementary string experience. No private lessons are necessary.    Students with prior string experience are encouraged to choose this arts offering in grade 6 so that they will have the opportunity to continue orchestra in grade 7 and beyond. Through daily instruction, students make incredible progress and are able to perform a variety of musical styles ranging from traditional classical works to the latest popular selections.  No audition is necessary. Musicians will explore additional instrument choices like the viola and bass. No experience is required.  

Middle School Orchestra 2 (Concert Orchestra)

The Concert Orchestra is the newest orchestra at Cabin John.  Students in grade 6 who have had private music instruction or one year of Orchestra 1 in grade 6 or 7 should enroll in Orchestra 2.  Many students in this group are also members of the PVYO and MCYO Preparatory programs.   Through daily instruction, students will expand their fundamentals including extensive work in the higher position and more advanced orchestral bow strokes.   Students will perform a variety of musical styles ranging from traditional classical works to the latest popular selections. 

Middle School Orchestra 3 (Advanced Orchestra)

Please note – All incoming 6th graders interested in Advanced should first enroll in Middle School Orchestra 2. Afterwards, parents should email Mr. Herman to request an audition or to submit a brief video highlighting their child’s skill level.  Upon evaluation, Mr. Herman will move qualified musicians to Orchestra 3.  

The Advanced Orchestra is the premier orchestra at Cabin John.  Students who have had private music instruction or any other extensive musical training should consider the Advanced Orchestra.  Many members of this group are in the advanced ensembles of MCYO and PVYO like Chamber Strings, Sinfonia, Young Artists, and Symphony.  Members meet daily in school and after-school in weekly sectional rehearsals.   The group studies and performs music from all styles including the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and Contemporary periods.  The members of this ensemble will represent the school in regional and state music festivals, events, and other trips which have included musical tours of New York City and music competitions in Ohio and Virginia.  Members of this ensemble are also chosen by audition to represent Cabin John in the county and state honors programs

* Please note that piano and guitar are not offered in orchestra, though students with prior experience can transition easily to a traditional orchestra instrument.