Band Opportunities

There are many opportunities to get involved with the band program at El Portal Middle School. Led by Mr. Jeremy White, Director of Bands, our students perform at the highest levels.

Bands are listed and described below and an extended description is available on the Band Program website.

Concert Band

This class is open to all 6th-8th grade students interested in learning to play a band instrument.  Instruments offered are: flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, and percussion (snare drum, bass drum, and mallet instruments).  No previous experience or ability to read sheet music is necessary.  Through their first year in band, students will learn the fundamentals of how their instruments work, and will learn to play a variety of music, primarily from Sound Innovations, Book 1.  

Symphonic Band

This class is designed for 6th-8th grade students who have one year of previous experience playing a band instrument, or an equivalent skill level.  Students will be required to audition for participation and for chair placement.  In this course, students will continue playing from Sound Innovations, and will also be introduced to warm-ups and exercises from Habits of a Successful Middle School Musician,  Additionally, students will begin to read sheet music.

Wind Ensemble

This class is an audition-based ensemble open to all qualifying 7th and 8th grade band students with at least one year of previous experience.  Entrance is granted based on student ability, as well as the instrumentation needs of the ensemble.  Students in this class will be working from Habits of a Successful Middle School Musician, and will read sheet music.  This course serves as a marching band for local parades, and travels to perform in festivals and competitions throughout California.

Jazz Band

This class is audition-based, and is open to students who play saxophone, trumpet, trombone, guitar, piano, bass, and drum set.  Students in this class will play music in the style of big band, blues, rock, Latin, and other various genres.  This course meets as a pre-period club activity three days per week.  This class is not designed for beginners, and therefore participation in a music ensemble during the school day is mandatory.  Students who wish to participate in Jazz Band, but play an instrument other than those listed may contact Mr. White about playing a secondary instrument in Jazz Band.