Music Ensembles Program
The Caringbah High School Music Ensembles Program is focussed on musical excellence, as well as inclusion so that both talented musicians and enthusiastic learners can enjoy music and reap the academic, emotional and social benefits of co-curricular music.
The program is built around many performance opportunities, scattered throughout the year. These include school concerts, community outreach performances, competitions and the annual Music Camp and Music Night.
Within the school's eighteen ensembles, there are four distinct areas of study – instrumental, vocal, contemporary music and jazz.
There are two large ensembles for instrumentalists: Symphonic Wind Ensemble and Concert Band. These are extended with specialist chamber ensembles on their instrument of choice. There is a dedicated concert for these groups in Term 1, Instrumental Interlude, and many ensemble members choose to perform solo or in unique chamber groups on the night. Many of the school's pianists also perform at the annual Piano Recital, held in Term 4. Instrument hire is available through the school.
Many students at Caringbah High enjoy singing, and there are two large choirs for both junior and senior students. Chamber choir, for experienced and talented choristers, performs difficult, intricate repertoire. Previously they have reached the Australasian Championship Final for Youth Choirs.
There are three specialist groups that make up Caringbah High's Contemporary Music Program (CMP). Each group rehearses for an hour a week. The best singers are selected at an audition and are teamed up with talented guitarists, drummers, bassists and keyboardists to explore repertoire of pop, RnB, soul and indie/alternative / mainstream rock. Students are extended by exploring skills in harmonising, arranging, stagecraft and personal interpretation and expression. Caringbah High's Singer's Night, in Term 2, offers CMP groups, choirs and soloists an opportunity to perform, and is a highly anticipated event.
Caringbah High has now a rich tradition of extending students with jazz study. There has been an ongoing large jazz ensemble since 1993. Now, the program has bloomed with three large bands, and an improvising combo. A junior improvisation group and a lunchtime jazz club are also run weekly.
These groups perform at the annual Jazz Soiree, along with individuals who prepare a jazz solo. Another anticipated event, this concert also features a professional jazz artist or group who lead a workshop during the day. 2013 saw The Vampires, a leading Australian modern jazz quartet, conduct a hands-on workshop and concert, and they graciously also performed two pieces at the Jazz Soiree.
A fun family night with food and entertainment from all ensembles takes place at the end of Term 2. It is a great opportunity for parents of music students to meet with each other and enjoy performances.
MUSIC CAMP & MUSIC NIGHT
All students involved in the program are invited to the annual Music Camp, held late in Term 4. The hard work of rehearsing at the camp is always enjoyably evident at the Music Night, where all ensembles perform at a high standard.
Caringbah High School Music Department has many connections with aged care and community organisations that offer the ensembles a chance to perform and engage with a wide range of people in the local area. This is an important social and cultural contribution that music students are privileged and encouraged to participate in. Ensembles are also often asked to play at large outdoor community events.
Each year, selected ensembles perform at the Sydney Eisteddfod. The students have proved to be formidable opponents in many categories over the years.
MUSIC SUPPORT GROUP
Caringbah High Music Ensemble Program is support by a group of dedicated parents who volunteer at concerts, instigate fundraising activities and vote on financial decisions and directions for the program, in consultation with Music Staff and tutors.