JCHS Music Programs
JCHS Ensemble Rotation Schedules
The Band Program - Andrew Burrows, Director: Quality concert band programs have been a long-standing tradition in James Caldwell High School. Over the years there has been a number of transformations in the scope and sequence of the program, which is contributed by either grade configuration or student enrollment. James Caldwell High School currently has two concert bands named the Concert Band and the Symphonic Band.
The Concert Band is our underclassmen band primarily composed of freshmen and sophomores. The Symphonic Band is our upperclassmen band and is usually reserved for juniors and seniors. Our goal is to provide each ensemble with a variety of level appropriate repertoire that enables them to grow as musicians. Through this process, we hope that our students gain a deeper appreciation for the art, take pride in their product, and achieve their fullest potential as life-long learners. Both ensembles rehearse each day but at different times. To find out about the grading policies for Music Performance and the concert bands, click on Music Performance Grading Policy.
The Choral Program - Elsie Timpson, Director: The Choral Program is comprised of two ensembles: the Treble Chorus (SSA voicing) primarily for freshman and sophomores, and the Concert Chorus (SATB voicing) primarily for juniors and seniors. Both ensembles perform a wide variety of literature from the Renaissance to the present.
The JCHS Orchestras - Jeff Cierniak, Director: The JCHS Orchestras - Jeff Cierniak, Director: There is a long-standing tradition in the Caldwell/West Caldwell School District. That tradition is the Caldwell/West Caldwell string program. Currently there are approximately 340 strings students in the elementary school, 45 in the middle school, and 35 in the high school. We offer violin lessons in second grade, and the other string instruments in third grade.
This is my third year working with the orchestras and we have had some great experiences despite almost all of my time with them being challenged by Covid 19. Our students have performed challenging repertoire admirably while also expanding into less common styles such as Tango, a style that we highlighted with an entire concert during the 2020 Music Marathon.
James Caldwell High School has one orchestra composed of Freshmen through seniors. This unique blend offers a chance for upper class students to help mentor Freshmen as they come into the program. We have played challenging music from Mozart, Haydn, Bach, and Corelli as well as music from many other genres. Students also performed their own modal improvisations which was compiled into an album entitled “Mindful Modal Meditations.” To find out more about the grading policy for Music Performance and orchestra, click on Music Performance Grading Policy.
Spirit Band - Andrew Burrows Director: The James Caldwell High School Spirit Band plays an integral part in both the Music Department and Athletic Department. The Pep Band attends all Pep-Rallies and Varsity Football Games, providing music and excitement for all. The repertoire performed consist of a variety of styles; from Motown, to Classic Rock, to Popular Music, and of course traditional football fight songs. To find out more click here.
The Band Program - Andrew Burrows, Director: Quality concert band programs have been a long-standing tradition at James Caldwell High School. The band program currently has two concert bands named the Concert Band and the Symphonic Band.
The Madrigal Singers - Elsie Timpson, Director: This is an auditioned ensemble (SATB voicing) which rehearses outside of regular school hours. The repertoire of the Madrigal Singers includes music of the Renaissance as well as jazz and holiday tunes. In the past this group has performed at the Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular and at Madison Square Garden as well as at local events.
The String Consort - Jeff Cierniak, Director: This is a conductorless group that primarily performs chamber music. The main goal of this group is to improve listening and watching skills. The group will perform several times in a number of different venues.
The Women Of Note - Elsie Timpson, Director: The Women of Note is a select ensemble which rehearses outside of regular school hours. This group specializes in music written and/or arranged for the woman's voice (SSA and SSAA voicing). The Women of Note have performed at many local and school events. Their extensive repertoire includes folk songs and children’s songs as well as classical, popular and jazz songs. They often add choreography to their performances.
Chamber Orchestra- Jeff Cierniak, Director: This is a conductorless group that primarily performs chamber music. The main goal of this group is to improve listening and watching skills. Depending on enrollment, the group could grow to involve winds and percussion.
JCHS Jazz Band - Matteo Varano, Director: The JCHS Jazz Band is the most experienced Jazz ensemble in the district. The group practices on Monday nights and is conducted by Mr. Lienhard. The ensemble performs at "The Music Marathon", the annual JCHS Music Dept. tour, the "Jazz Spectacular", and at the "Arts and Technology" show. Repertoire is selected from a wide array of styles and emphasis on improvisation is encouraged. This is an "extra-circular" ensemble that enjoys learning and performing music!
Percussion Ensemble- Peter Abazia, Director: The James Caldwell High School Percussion Ensemble is a performing chamber group that explores and performs the various aspects of the world of percussion. The ensemble gives percussion students the opportunity to learn and experience all the various families of percussion instruments; the wood family: xylophones, marimbas, woodblocks, temple blocks, etc, the skin family: drums, timpani, etc., and the metal family: cymbals, triangles, etc. Over the years, the Percussion Ensemble has become a well-known chamber ensemble within the JCHS Music Department due to their performances that provide the audience with an experience that is not only musically exciting, but visually as well.
Retromen - William Downey, Director: The Retromen are James Caldwell High School's male-voiced acapella group, an open extracurricular ensemble that meets once per week. The Retromen perform most of their work in three or four parts. They sing music from various styles including traditional choral repertoire, barbershop, classic songs from the 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's, and arrangements of current hits.