Band camp keeps middle school students practicing

Vivo Band Instrument Repair is offering its ninth two-week band camp this summer, and space remains for more signups.

"This is our fourth (camp) with the city Parks and Recreation Department," said Carol Doede, who with husband, Richard, owns and runs Vivo Band Instrument Repair in Carson City. "We did it before in conjunction with the school district. All together, we've probably held band camps for about eight years."

The Doedes, both retired band directors from the Carson City School District, started band camp when they saw a need for a summer program for middle school band students, Carol said. High school students attend a two-week mandatory camp each August at Carson High.

"The younger students didn't really have anything to keep them going over the summer," she said. "We thought it would be real beneficial for them to have them practice for something."

The Doedes will accept any students entering sixth, seventh or eighth grade into their program who have at least one year of experience.

"We generally accept whomever comes along," Carol said. "One year, we did it with just 20 students. It's just whomever can sign up. We're not real strict with our minimum or maximum."

Twenty-six students are signed up so far for the camp, which begins July 25. The cut-off for registration is Friday.

Josh Tucker, a trumpet player at Carson Middle School, attended the Doedes' band camp last year and is returning this year.

"I went last year because I just needed to practice," the 12-year-old said. "I wasn't doing it much."

Band camp runs from 8:30 a.m.-noon Monday through Friday at the Carson City Community Center. Depending on skill, students will either play in the concert band or the jazz band.

"The jazz band is really for more advanced students, the older students," Carol said. "They audition for us the first day. The concert band is more for beginning students."

Helping the Doedes with band camp this summer are a few music teachers from the Carson City School District and a few college students. Part of the week, instructors will be leading theory classes on composers.

"We're kind of covering the gamut," Doede said. "We'll be studying Mozart, Gershwin, John Williams, Beethoven, Scott Joplin. We're trying to cover a big time frame."

After the intensive overview, students will break into groups and study one composer in depth, and provide a "creative" presentation to their peers on the final day of camp.

"They might do a play or perform a song about them," Doede said.

She is still looking for a tuba player to round out this year's group of attendees.

"We always get lots of flutes, clarinets and saxophones, but not too many trumpets, trombones, baritones (baby tubas) and tubas," she said.

Josh, a trumpet player since fifth grade, will help flesh out this year's brass section. He hopes for similar musical opportunities to last year's when he worked on a piece by John Edmundson called "Valvelocity" with the brass section. "Valve" refers to the valves on brass instruments.

"The piece showed off the brass section," he said. "It was quite difficult."

Students like Josh also can meet with students from the school district's other middle school and hear more about what it's like playing in a different band.

"It's fun being around other kids who like music as much as they do," Carol said. "It builds a lot of rapport between the kids. The Eagle Valley Middle School kids get to know CMS kids."

The cost of band camp is $85. Carson City School District elementary and middle school band instructors have registration forms. Parents may call 883-2219 for information.

n Contact reporter Maggie O'Neill at or 881-1219.

Band Camp

What: Vivo Band Camp for middle-school students

When: 8:30 a.m.-noon, July 25-29

Where: Carson City Community Center, 851 E. William St.

Cost: $85.

Registration: Call 883-2219.

What: at Carson High


When: 8 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and from 5-8:30 p.m. Aug. 8-19.

Info: A packet will be sent two weeks in advance of the start of band camp.

Band Booster President Marina Crounk can be reached at 884-0664 for information.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment