04/24/2019 - FLORIDA TRIP 2020

FLORIDA TRIP 2020 (EVERYONE)!! Since we were not able to take our Florida trip to Disney World and Universal Studios last Spring Break, we will travel this upcoming school year on Friday, March 13th - Thursday, March 19th, 2020. There will be an informational trip meeting next month on Tuesday, May 28th beginning at 7:00 PMAny and all interested students (and their parents/guardians) are welcome to attend!


DRUMLINE AUDITIONS (CURRENT GRADES 9-11)I will have a sign-up sheet on the bulletin board tomorrow (in addition to a warm-up/exercise packet) for percussionists interested in trying out for next Fall's drumline for marching band. Percussionists that do not audition for drumline and/or are not selected for drumline will play in the pit percussion section. There will be an initial meeting to meet the new drumline instructor and to talk about the audition process on Thursday, May 2nd from 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM. Auditions will be held in Opstad Auditorium on Monday, May 6th from 5:00 PM - 8:00 PM


Hello City High Band Family, 

My name is Aaron Ottmar and I will be serving as Director of Bands at City High School for the 2019-2020 academic school year. Being a part of City High Bands, you will learn and foster important life skills, actively participate in a creative outlet that is rewarding and fun, experience numerous memorable musical performances, make long-lasting and valuable friendships in a positive learning environment, and be a part of an organization that has been referred to as the "heartbeat" of City High. We are so glad to have you in our City High Band family and can't wait to get to know you better and work with you. 
In regards to next year, I wanted to update everyone regarding a couple of important items (please fully read all of this important information):
1) In case you had not heard, Dr. McReynolds is retiring from his position of Director of Bands here at City High at the end of this school year. Needless to say, he will be greatly missed from City High. As a former student of his, I can truly say that he has been a positive influence and made a difference in the lives of so many students (he certainly was influential for me wanting to pursue music education). His passion for excellence in instrumental music is truly remarkable and his success through the years here at City High is quite noteworthy (most notably, his Wind Ensemble's selection to perform at this year's IBA conference). Dr. McReynolds, we wish you all the best in your retirement and thank you for everything you did for City High Bands, City High School and for the greater Iowa City community. 
2) I want to officially welcome Mr. Mike Kowbel (koh-bull) to our City High Band family as Assistant Director of Bands. Mr. Kowbel is currently finishing his first year as Director of Bands at South East Junior High but has previously taught at the high school level at Monticello High School in Monticello, IA from 2015-2018. He reinvigorated Monticello's band program in all areas and was most notably selected to have the Monticello High School Concert Band perform at the 2018 IBA conference. We are excited to have Mr. Kowbel join our music staff here at City High! Please feel free to send him an email introducing yourself in addition to giving him a warm City High Band welcome: kowbel.michael@iowacityschools.org
2a) I wanted to inform you of the duties that Mr. Kowbel and myself agreed upon for the upcoming year: 
Mr. Kowbel:
Co-direct Marching Band/Pep Band
Brass Lessons
Wind Ensemble 
Freshman Concert Band
Jazz Workshop
Mr. Ottmar
Co-direct Marching Band/Pep Band
Woodwind Lessons
Percussion Lessons
Symphony Band
Jazz Lab
Jazz Collective 
Jazz Ensemble
AP Music Theory
Jazz Combo


Hi all,

Please make certain dates are on your calendars, all are required for students in the ensembles.
1.   Saturday, April 27 - Drum Line performance at Napoleon Park, 9:30-                    10:30am.
2.   Monday, April 29 - Spring Jazz Concert - All jazz ensembles.
3.   Wednesday, May 1 - Spring Band Concert, 7:30pm - All concert bands.  
      This is also senior night, seniors and parents will be recognized.
4.   Friday, May 3 - Jazz Ensemble Concert/Open Rehearsal - 6:00 pm
5.   Saturday, May 4 - State Large Group Contest - Concert Band only
                  See attached.
6.   Sunday, May 5 - Wind Ensemble Concert/Open Rehearsal - 5:00pm
7.   Thursday, May 9 - Jazz Ensemble IBA performance, 8:30pm Des Moines
8.   Friday, May 10 - Wind Ensemble IBA performance, 5:00pm Des Moines
9.   Friday, May 17 - Ped Mall Concert - Jazz Ensemble and Collective
10.   Sunday, May 19 - Annual End-of-Year Ice Cream Social/Awards, 3:30pm
11.   Saturday, May 25 - Commencement - Symphony Band


Good morning band families,
I just have a few announcements.
Don't forget that 2Dogs Pub on S. 1st Ave is donating 10% to the band for anyone who mentions they are there to support the City High band program the entire month of April. Please show support for the businesses who help support us.
The final band concert is May 1st. We still need one ticket taker. If you can help out, please sign up here: Concert Ticket Sales
We still need new coordinators for next year's Heck Week. These are important to making sure the students have a smooth Heck Week experience. It would be great to have a couple volunteers before the school year ends as planning starts in the summer. Email me with questions or if you are interested.
We need one more person to help with coordinating marching band uniforms next year. Here is a message from the current coordinator, Ute Muh:
We need to recruit someone to help manage the band uniforms in the coming years. We're hoping a parent of a freshmen (or possibly sophomore) will step up to help. It's an intense but fun responsibility that runs from Heck Week (~August 20) to the end of marching band season (mid-October). You'll also be needed a few days in the summer to sort uniforms as they come back from the cleaners. Responsibilities come in two phases: during Heck Week, students are fitted into their uniforms, during marching season you'll be coordinating the volunteers that hand out and take in uniforms at various events like home football games. It helps to be organized, and calm under pressure. The fun part is that you get to know all the band kids and share their excitement up close. Ute and Maureen are currently in charge of these efforts but are coming to the end of their kids' tenure at City High. The coming season (2019/20) is their last year and the final opportunity to train a new team. We have one volunteer already, but need a second co-captain for the team. Please reach out to Ute (ute_muh@yahoo.com) if you have questions, or better yet if you're enthusiastic to join the new uniform team! 
Jared Hix
BACH Leadership Team  



Hi all,

First a big congratulations to the following band students that were accepted into SEIBA Honor Bands:
James Lippe - bass clarinet
Nolan Vibhakar - alto sax
Maryam Abuissa - trumpet
Grace Parrott - trumpet
Rika Yahashiri - trumpet
Joseph Bennett - trombone
Maggie Cremers - trombone
Keith Friestad - percussion
Kolbe Schnoebelen - jazz trombone
Ana Koch - jazz guitar
Coming events:
Tuesday, Jan. 8 (tomorrow) - home basketball game.  Pep Band 'B' playing.  Wear
                Heck Week (Jazz) t-shirts.  Call time is 6:30pm.
Tuesday, Jan. 15 - Dine Out for City High Band at The Vue restaurant
Saturday, Feb. 2 - Jazz Showcase.  All jazz bands and combos.
Thursday-Saturday, Feb. 7-9 - Northern Festival of Bands.  Selected students.
Wednesday, Feb. 13 - Mid Winter Band Concert.  All concert bands.
Tuesday, Feb. 19 - All Iowa Concert Band Festival.  This is an all-day event at
               Central DeWitt High School in Dewitt, IA.  Symphony Band and Wind
               Ensemble participating.
Please place all of these events on your calendars as all are required events for the ensembles/students involved.
That's all for now,
Dr. M


Hi all,

First, congratulations to the following students that were selected to participate in the UNI Northern Festival of Bands in February:
Laila Butler-Mills
Maggie Cremers
Laura Friestad
Keith Friestad
James Lippe
Julia McReynolds
Michael Takahashi
1)    Pep Band 'A' performs at the City-West basketball game on next Friday, Dec. 7.  Uniform consists of heck week (Jazz) t-shirt.  Call time is 6:30pm.
2)    Fruit/cheese/candy pick-up will take place on next Friday (evening) and Saturday (morning), Dec. 7 & 8.  Exact times to follow.
3)    Our first band concert will be Wednesday, December 12 at 7:30pm in Opstad Auditorium.  Call time for Concert Band (grade 9) is 7:00pm.  Concert attire is required.  Male:  Black pants, black socks, black shoes, long (solid) black tie and white shirt.  Female:  Black pants (long, ankle length skirt), black shoes, black hose, white shirt/blouse.
4)    Concert band students have a playing assignment (Ab scale) due by midnight on Sunday, December 2.  A grade of "0" will be given if not submitted on time.  Parents, please check with your child to make certain this is done.
That's all for now,
Dr. M

11/10/2018    All-State Band Musicians

2018 All-State Auditions - 10/20/2018

BACH is now on Twitter at @chsbach!

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Good afternoon band families,
I have a few reminders for upcoming band events.
First, Wednesday, October 31st (next Wednesday) is the deadline for the Band Apparel Order. All orders and payments must be turned into Mary Mahaffa in Music Office by Wednesday! The apparel options and order form are attached.
Next, 2 Dogs Pub on 1st Ave will donate 15% of the total bill to patrons who mention they are there to support the City High band the entire month of November! Tell everyone you know to tell their server they are there to support the City High band! 
On the subject of eating, Tuesday, November 13th is Dine Out for Music at Wildwood Smokehouse and Saloon. Wildwood will donate 10% of the night's total sales (excluding alcohol) to the City High band program.
We are still looking for a food coordinator (or 2) for Jazz Showcase. This person organizes the food for the students between shows and the snacks for the audience. The previous coordinator made detailed notes and I know would be happy to mentor whoever takes over for her. If you are willing to help out with this, contact me or Jennifer Cremers.
Lastly, there are only 2 parking lot cleanups left and students are required to do 1 of these. If you are not going to be out of town for Thanksgiving, please consider coming to the cleanup on November 24th. 
Thanks for your support.
Jared Hix
BACH Leadership Team


Hi all,

It was a wonderful day at our all-state auditions in Washington.  All students performed at a high level, owing to all of the hard work put in to preparation for this event.  The best thing about events such as this is that because of the hard work, each student is a better performer now than when they began.
Please offer special congratulations to the following students selected into the all-state instrumental ensembles:
Quinn Kopelman - bass clarinet
Elliott Beauchamp - bassoon
Adam Holmes - bassoon
Ryan Carter - bass trombone
Kolbe Schnoebelen - trombone
Renee Thomas - horn
Joshua Fletcher - trumpet
Michael Takahashi - percussion
Laura Friestad - clarinet
Rocio Stejskal - clarinet
Maggie Cremers - trombone alternate
Justine Reschly-Krasowski - alto saxophone alternate


Good morning band families,
It has been a busy marching season and especially the last couple of weeks and I need to take a minute to step back and appreciate all of the work that has been done. There have been some last minute changes that have been taken in stride and seamlessly resolved.
Thanks to Shelley Rublaitus and Freyja Stoltz for all their work with Heck Week. They did a lot of work before the season even started to get our sponsors and provide food and water to keep the students fed and hydrated. This is a big job that is so important to getting the band off on the right foot.
Thank you to Lynn Holmes and Robin Kopelman and everyone who worked on the End-of-Marching-Season party after the cancelled final home game performance. Everyone pulled together to put on an epic party even with the start time being moved up 2 hours.
Thanks to Melissa Schnoebelen and the food preppers who put together the dinners for the marching band before they left to go to the Clinton Competition. It was a great last minute and by no means small effort to feed 150 hungry teenagers.
Thank you to Theresa Murphy-Lewis and all those who helped with the Bates Field Follies reception last night. The gym looked great and no one left without cookies. 
We still have a few more parking lot clean-ups but thanks to David Weiss, Theresa Lewis, Kim Cannon, Anita Schuckert and everyone else who helps organize and the Sunday morning activities. 
A HUGE THANK YOU to Ute Muh and her uniform crew for all of the effort they put in each time the marching band steps out onto the field. They had the students out of their uniforms and up to the reception in record time last night so they could enjoy their night. 
With one more performance left in the marching season, I know I speak for the entire Leadership Team when I say thank you to all of those who have volunteered to help out BACH and the marching band this year. There were many new faces joining our ranks. We appreciate every one one of you, new and experienced, and look forward to continuing to with you as we move into concert season and beyond.
Thanks for your support.
Jared Hix
BACH Leadership Team 


Hello everyone,

I am writing to you about a very important event for our district. The ICCSD Music Auxiliary hosts an annual car wash each year to raise money for many musical activities throughout the district. This organization funds things like transportation for music events, All-State registration and other associated costs, competition entry fees, uniform cleaning, and many other things that we would not be able to fund on our own—or would necessitate greater fees to participate in music ensembles at our schools. This event does not run without support from our community. I have attached two documents to this email that discuss what Music Auxiliary funds, ways to donate, and the locations of the car washes.
City High will primarily be responsible for the car wash held at the East Side Hy-Vee (812 S 1st. Ave.)
We are in great need of parent volunteers to help staff this event throughout the day or to provide snacks, etc., for those parents and students that are working. Please consider donating time or goods to help this event be a success! The link to sign-up is here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/30e0d48aaa923aafa7-2018.
Please distribute this information to any others that may wish to donate or assist in this event. Without your support, we would not be able to offer so many wonderful opportunities and experiences to our students.
As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me.
Dr. M


Good afternoon band families,
Band family t-shirts were distributed last Friday before the City High home game. It was great to so much support in the stands! All of the remaining t-shirts are in the Music Office. If you were not able to pick up your t-shirt, stop in (or have your student stop in) and pick it up from Mary. Any t-shirts that have not yet been paid for need to be taken care of by September 21st. Unpaid t-shirts will then be offered for resale in order to recoup the money we paid for the shirts.
We still need help with uniform hand-out/take-in for the remaining home games, Bates Field Follies, and the Clinton marching competition. You do not need to be an expert to help with this and will still be able to watch the performances. If you can help with any of these events please sign up!
Sunday is another parking lot clean up. Parking and Transportation has asked that the trash bins be filled before bags. They also ask that we consolidate bags so it is easier for them to tell which lots are finished. Also, if your student signs up for a drive-to lot, please make sure they have a ride there. It doesn't do anyone any good if they are arriving at the lot after everyone else has already done the work.
Finally, next Thursday, Sept. 20th is the first BACH meeting. It will be held in the City high band room at 7:00 pm and usually last about an hour. We will be discussing Bates Field Follies, the End-of-Marching-Season party, and pretty much anything marching band related. Please join us. 
Jared Hix
BACH Leadership Team


Hi all,

The rain outside has reminded me that I have yet to contact you about our text group.  You are invited to join our group to receive text messages from me or Mr. Ottmar concerning band activities.  We use this text message, along with e-mail and web site postings when we we have time sensitive information to share.  We do not use this text system to give weekly information or when have general information to share.  We use this text system for cancellations, changes to our schedule to due weather and the like.
If you would like to be included in our text group, you can:
This link includes our class code, so anyone can join our group instantly.
2)     You may also, on you cell phone, enter the number 81010 and text @mmcreyno
3)      You may email mmcreyno@mail.remind.com
Any of these methods should get you onto our group text system.
Dr. M



Hi all,
Attached please find the Summer newsletter for the City High Marching Band 2018.  Please read all of the information carefully, and please place all band events on your calendars.  Just a reminder, all band activities are required, so please be aware of all band dates as you make plans.
Also, there were many students that did not take marching band shoes home at the end of the school year.  These shoes, since none were marked, have been placed in large bins, paired by size.  If you left shoes, you should plan to come early on the first day of heck week to retrieve them.
Finally, just a note to let you know of the big evening planned for September 7, our home football game vs Ames high.  We will be joined by the 8th grade band from Southeast, and will have as our very special guest the University of Iowa Hawkeye Marching Band under the direction of new assistand director of bands Eric Bush.  This should be a fun evening not only for our band program, but for the community as well.
Have a great rest of the Summer, and I look forward to seeing you in August.
Dr. M