Band FAQ

Band - The Ocoee Marching Knights

Ocoee High School Band FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

What groups are included in the marching band? The band consists of musicians; brass & woodwind instruments and percussion as well as the auxiliary unit known as the Knights Visual Ensemble (KVE).

What is the auxiliary? The auxiliary unit performs with the band during field shows. They are part of the visual effect of the show. Members of the auxiliary will have their base foundation in dance, but will also be engaged with equipment such as flags, rifles, sabers or other equipment that will add visual enhancements to the band presentation. The Knights Visual Ensemble participate with the marching band at all events. 

What types of groups are there for musicians? Musicians have the opportunity to be in one of the three concert band classes, two jazz bands, percussion ensemble and a variety of instrumental choirs as well as the Indoor Percussion Unit, Winter Guard and Competitive Dance Team.

What types of performances does the band do? Field shows at varsity football game halftime (home & away); Various marching performance assessments; Ocoee, Winter Garden & Apopka Holiday Parades; Universal Studios Macy’s Holiday Parades; Various other parades; At least one concert each quarter; Solo & ensemble festival; Pep rallies; Concert Band Music Performance Assessments and Various other functions. 

How often does the band practice? Band camp dates are listed on the website. During football season, the band practices Tuesday evenings and Thursday after school; Additional practices are scheduled throughout the year as needed to prepare for various performances.

Is marching band mandatory? Marching band is a mandatory part of the band curriculum – (per OCPS guidelines). If a student is enrolled in a band class they are expected to participate in all aspects of the band curriculum. 

How much does it cost to be in the band? There is a “Fair Share” band/auxiliary assessment each year that helps to cover the costs of clinicians, dry cleaning, uniforms, T-shirts, equipment, transportation and other band expenses. Band & auxiliary assessments may be different amounts. Assessments do not include shoes and accessories. This years’ Fair Share Assessment is: $325 for new Band members: $300 for All KVE Members; $250 for returning band members (percussion and winds) There is a $50 instrument rental assessment for any students that uses school own instruments.

Does the band go on any trips? The band takes various trips throughout the year to parades, games, & assessments. We also take a big out of state trip every other year. This year is not a travel year for the band but the band has traveled to Dallas, Tx., Memphis Tn., New York, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. in the past. Students and chaperones are financially responsible for trips but trips are not mandatory.

How does the band get to events? For away events the band takes either school or charter buses. These types of events depart from the high school and it is the responsibility of the parents to get the student to the school at the designated times. For events at the high school, such as home games or concerts, it is the parent’s responsibility to get the child to the high school at the appointed time. For all events, parents are responsible for ensuring their student is picked-up after the event by the designated time.

In which concert band class will my child be placed? Students are assigned to one of the three concert bands: Concert Band (9th grade), Symphonic Band or Wind Ensemble. Wind Ensemble placement is based on audition and, for returning students, previous year’s performance. The audition process will take place in the spring before school is out.

Do students taking honors/advanced placement (AP) classes have time for band? Yes! The majority of band students take honors & AP classes. The band is well represented in the National Honor Society, Student Government and other academic and leadership organizations. Also, 5 of our schools 10 valedictorians have been active band members!

Can students participate in sports and other activities? Yes. The band has students in Football, Track, Soccer, NHS, Drama, FFA, Chorus, FBLA, Leadership, Art, Water polo, French and Spanish Clubs to name a few. Communication between the student, coach, parent and band director are important to make this work.

What do Oboe & Bassoon players do for marching band? Oboe & Bassoon musicians can choose to be part of the percussion section, a member of the auxiliary, or march with an alternate instrument such as mellophone or baritone.

Does the band provide instruments to students? The band typically provides instruments for students that have an alternate marching band instrument. This includes tubas, percussion, French horns and baritones. Other large instruments are provided by the school but the majority of band students use their personal instruments. There is a rental assessment for school owned instruments of $50 for the year.

What options are there for percussion students? Percussion students can be part of the battery (Drum Line) or the Front Ensemble (Pit). Placement is based on the percussion audition. Generally, new percussion students begin in the front ensemble in order to gain valuable marching band experience.

What about the Parents? What do we do? Well, the parents are just as important as the student. The foundation of success in any high school band program is the band parent/booster organization. If your child is in the band… YOU ARE A BAND PARENTīŠ We encourage and welcome all of are parents to participate in the various volunteer areas, including, chaperones, concession workers, Grill dads or moms, KVE moms, seamstress, and many other positions that will be announced as needed. It is our expectation that each household participate in at least one band activity during the football season or during the rest of the year. Please look for volunteer opportunities in communications from the director and/or band parent officers and GET INVOLVED!

What types of communications can I expect to receive? Communications come out from the band director and the band boosters (parent organization). Mr. Hendricks produces a bi-weekly update that is mass emailed to all students and parents which will be also be posted on our Charms site. Band boosters meet monthly and send out additional communications via email & regular mail. Additional communications are sent home and/or emailed to cover changes in schedules and reminders. Information is also updated regularly on the band website and the band Facebook page (Ocoee Knights Band), as well as Twitter (OHSBand) and your band Charms! account.

Is the band program at OHS FUN? Of course! We believe strongly in a music experience that is educational, enriching and enjoyable.