Tuesday 6 December 2016

Optimist Festival Dates and Informaton

2016 Optimist Band and Jazz festival dates were made official yesterday.

Please mark your calendars, in past we have ended up with conflicts because students have procrastinated in mentioning these dates to parents.

This is going to be one amazing festival run with 7 bands at competition.

Optimist Concert Band - Convention Centre 375 York.

Wednesday, February 22nd

2:30 PM Gr. 9 Concert Band -  Performance time.
Students will be taken down and return by school bus.
12:30 PM Pick up at Westwood Collegiate (360 Rouge Rd) going to the Convention Centre
4:00 Pick -up at the convention centre returning to Westowod Collegiate (360 Rouge Rd)
4:30ISH - @Westwood

8:00 PM Grade 10 Concert Band - Performance
Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from the convention centre

3:30PM all percussionists meet in the band room to pack up instrumentation
6:50PM - All members must be at the convention centre and meet Mr. Edwards at the bottom of the main escalators.  We should be finished adjudication and photo by 9:00PM

Friday, Feb. 24th

6:00 PM - Symphonic Band

Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from the convention centre

3:30 PM all percussionists meet in the band room to pack up instrumentation
4:30 PM  - All members must be at the convention centre and meet Mr. Edwards at the bottom of the main escalators.  We should be finished adjudication and photo by 7:00PM

Each year the Optimist festival is run by a group of dedicated volunteers from the various Optimist Clubs in Winnipeg.  For the past 7 years,in the spirit of volunteerism,  Westwood Collegiate has been the workforce that helps the administrative team pack up the festival.  All symphonic band members are encouraged to bring a change of clothes as we will be: stacking chairs, stands and putting the percussion section back in its boxes and helping festival organizers.  We will be done sometime around 9:30PM with clean-up.

This does qualify for volunteer hours for those who need them.

Optimist Jazz Band - NEW LOCATION - Franco Manitoban Cultural Centre 340 Provencher Blvd.

Thursday March 2nd

1:00 PM Jr. Jazz Band "A"-  Performance time.
2:40 PM Jr. Jazz Band "B"-  Performance time.
Students will be taken down and return by school bus.
11:00 AM Pick up at Westwood Collegiate (360 Rouge Rd) going to Franco Manitoban Cultural Centre 340 Provencher Blvd.
4:00 PM Pick -up at Franco Manitoban Cultural Centre 340 Provencher Blvd. returning to Westwood Collegiate (360 Rouge Rd)
4:30PM-ISH - @Westwood

Thursday March 2nd

8:00 PM Intermediate Jazz Band -  Performance time.
Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from the convention centre

3:30PM all percussionists meet in the band room to pack up instrumentation.
6:30PM - All members must be at the Franco Manitoban Cultural Centre 340 Provencher Blvd. and meet Mr. Edwards.  We should be finished adjudication and photo by 9:00PM-ISH

Friday March 3rd

8:00 PM Sr. Jazz Band -  Performance time.
Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from the convention centre

3:30PM all percussionists meet in the band room to pack up instrumentation.
6:30PM - All members must be at the Franco Manitoban Cultural Centre 340 Provencher Blvd. and meet Mr. Edwards.  We should be finished adjudication and photo by 9:00PM-ISH

Tuesday 29 November 2016

Merry Quizmas

With the snow falling all of our band thoughts turn to "Quizmas" our affectionate name for the band mind-term.

Yes, my gift to you, playing tests are coming to a band near you and will begin the week of the 12th and wrap up the following Monday.  After looking through numerous pieces, the bands have all selected their music for concert and the playing tests will be exclusively on this music.  Each student will be asked to play though these pieces and recieve a mark based on our standardband rubric.  The "Official Quizmas" Marking Rubric 

Sunday 20 November 2016

On My Way Back

To all of you who have been wondering about my departure, I thought it was time to break the silence and let you know that I am doing much better and I am on what I feel is a very good path towards recovery.

Earlier this summer I started noticing some pains in my body that I could not account for.  This escalated to the point where I started to lose the use of my arms; which ultimately led to my departure, as I could no longer do my job.

Under several doctors care and after many appointments, I was diagnosed with a severe form of tendinopathy which ultimately spread, at one point, through my whole body.

I am now beginning to do many of the things I used to do and we anticipate that I will return to Westwood (my second family) on December 5th.

I would like to thank Mr. Walden who has stepped in without hesitation to ensure that the band program keeps moving forward. And, I would also like to acknowledge the unwavering support of Mr. Dueck.

I also want to thank all of you who have sent private messages and have stood by without truly knowing what was going on. Your: calls, texts, emails and cards have been great sources of strength.

See you soon.

Miss you lots.

Mr. E

Wednesday 19 October 2016

Brandon Jazz Festival Deposits

As you may already know, we have posted the deposits for the Brandon Jazz Festival on line.  In fact, some of you may have already received an email from School Soft (our on line school account managing program) about it.  Please note that the deadlines are as we discussed at the meeting.  1st payment is due Nov. 9 and the second payment is due December 9 and the final payment will be due on Feb 3.

Funny enough, but we do spend a great deal of time tracking down payments and when we used to post the actual due date in School Soft, it would lock out the deposit on the next day with no grace period.  SO...... to counteract this, we made the due dates in the program for April 21.... obviously that would be long after the event is over. Its just our way of allowing a bit of wiggle room for those who might need it.  That said, you are also welcome to make both payments now if it works better for you.

As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call.

Instrument Rentals

Instrument Rentals are now online and you may have already received an email from school soft about the fee.  Pleas click on the "Rental" banner above for more information.

Tuesday 18 October 2016

Some interesting thoughts about music


In Washington, DC, at a Metro Station, on a cold January morning in 2007, this man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes.  During that time, approximately 2,000 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.

 After about 3 minutes: A middle-aged man noticed that there was a musician playing.  He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds, and then he hurried on to meet his schedule.

About 4 minutes later: The violinist received his first dollar.  A woman threw money in the hat and without stopping, continued to walk.

At 6 minutes: A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.

At 10 minutes: A 3-year old boy stopped, but his mother tugged him along hurriedly.  The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head the whole time.  This action was repeated by several other children, but every parent, without exception, forced their children to move on quickly.

At 45 minutes:The musician played continuously.  Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while.  About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace.  The man collected a total of $32.

After 1 hour: He finished playing and silence took over.  No one noticed and no one applauded.  There was no recognition at all.

 No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world.  He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars.  Two days before, Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100 each to sit and listen to him play the same music.

This is a true story.  Joshua Bell, playing incognito in the D.C. Metro Station, was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people's priorities.

This experiment raised several questions:
Ø In a common-place environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty?
Ø If so, do we stop to appreciate it?
Ø Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made . . ..How many other things are we missing as we rush through life?

Enjoy life NOW .. it has an expiration date .            


Sunday 16 October 2016


With a little bit of patience all of the TABS that you know and love are back with the inclusion of a NEW Nationals tab to gain quick and easy access to that information.

Friday 14 October 2016

Little bit of construction

Thanks to some mysterious errors on our website, I have had to remove the links across the top row that you would usually access to go to the various neat parts of our site., such as the Brandon Jazz info or the Nationals info.  I will do my best to have them back up and running for Monday.

Monday 3 October 2016

Just because you need this in your life

When you think you've done all you can do....... take your game to this level and we will all really have something.

Thursday 29 September 2016

Audition Results

After nearly three weeks of intensive auditions, we are pleased to announce the placements for this year's Intermediate and Jr. Jazz.

Intermediate and Jr. Jazz

Wednesday 28 September 2016

Nationals and Brandon Jazz Meetings

For all parents and students involved in the Sr. Jazz/ Vocal Jazz tour to Nationals in May (16-20), there will be a meeting to discuss this exciting opportunity and to gauge involvement on October 13th at 6:30 PM in the Theatre. The meeting should take approximately 45 minutes.

As is tradition, all of our Jazz Bands will be heading to the Brandon Jazz festival in March (15-17). We meet once to discuss the basic details of the trip. That meeting takes place on the same night Thursday, October 13th at 7:30 PM in the theatre. It will be under an hour.  

Please feel free to contact Mr. Edwards or Ms. Russell if you have any questions.

Monday 26 September 2016


Jazz Band:

Our Auditions for Intermediate and Junior Jazz have been going on for the past two weeks and the results should be posted by Friday.

REMEMBER:  regardless of the ensemble you end up in, you will be getting and age appropriate credit.  Thus if you are in Intermediate Jazz and you are in Gr.9, you will get a Gr. 9 credit.  Vice versa, if you are in Gr 12 and you are in Jr. Jazz, you will get a Grade 12 credit.

Concert Band:

Auditions are about to begin.  Grade 10 Concert Band and Symphonic will begin on Thursday the 28th and Gr. 9 Concert Band will begin on Tuesday the 4th.

To aid in the process, please click on the links below for your audition date and order.

Symphonic Band

Grade 10 Concert Band

Grade 9 Concert Band

Wednesday 31 August 2016

Welcome Back!

Welcome back everyone!   I am really excited about all of the possibilities for the year.   I sincerely hope you had a fantastic summer and I am looking forward to hearing about all of your stories and adventures…. or even about your marathon Netflix sessions.

I am working on the website next week, and I will have everything up to date by Friday.

As always,  you can keep up to date here with all the comings and goings of the band program.  But it is worthwhile to remind you that you will get information also on the band twitter and instagram account (@bandatwestwood) that is not posted here - such as schedules for the band and information about auditions or just some funny laughs.

See you soon!  Mr. E.

Monday 27 June 2016

Band DVD

Band DVD' are now available and can me picked up as follows:

Grade 12's can pick up their DVD at the Grad Rehearsal on Monday June 27th in front of the office.

Grade 9-11's can pick up the DVD with their report cards on the 29th between 9:00AM and 3:00PM.

For those of you who are new or for those of you just getting a DVD for the first time, please remember that the DVD is just a storage device.  It will not play in a DVD player.  You insert this into your computer and download all the files on it.

In order to watch the movies, you are may need a program called “VLC.” This is a free program and you can down-load both the mac and P.C. version by visiting: www.videolan.org/vlc/index.html

On behalf of everyone involved in this project, thank you for your support and enjoy the memories!

Mr. Edwards 

Tuesday 21 June 2016

SR. JAZZ 2016- 2017

Thank you to all who tried out for Sr. Jazz this year.  It was a very competitive year with many spots available and loads of talented students to fill them.  I am not exaggerating when I say that the list below was a very challenging decision.

SR. JAZZ 2016- 2017

Christian Trites - Alto I - (Co- Section Leader)
Camryn O'Dowda - Alto II
Davis Peters - Tenor I - (Co -Section Leader)
Emily Harris -Tenor II
Brady Cvitan - Bari Sax

Jack Hamm - Trombone I - (Co-Section Leader)
Brenna DiLazzaro - Trombone I
Tierney Betz - Trombone II
Jaden Lakie - Trombone II
Ben Ulmer - Trombone III
Austin Ducharme - Trombone III/ Tuba
David Loewen - Bass Bone - (Co-Section Leader)

Ben Schmidt - Trumpet I - (Co-Section Leader)
Avery Edwards - Trumpet I (Sweep)
Jami Cameron - Trumpet II - (Co-Section Leader)
Erin Cox - Trumpet III
Isabella Riemer - Trumpet IV

Carter LaFleche - Bass - (Co-Section Leader)
Aidan Clarke - Drums
Danika Magalas - Piano
Paul Caruthers - Aux - (Co-Section Leader)

SECTION LEADERS - when you are free, please stop by the band room this week for a quick 5 second meeting with Mr. Edwards.

Thursday 2 June 2016

A Note from Ms. Muncer

The text below arrived in a card from Ms. Muncer today and I wanted to make sure that her message got out to all of the band students.  It is with her blessings that it is reproduced here.

To:  Mr. Edwards and WW Band Students

Words cannot express my gratitude for the incredible welcome I received at the dress rehearsal last week.  I was overwhelmed by the warm welcome and the amazing cards that you gave to me.  Your kind, caring, inspiring and  mature thoughts was all very much appreciated.

Jake... Yes I love the cover designs!....  was this your handiwork?

Kjersten, thank you for suggesting the live feed!  Yes I heard the whole concert!

Piper... you kind and thoughtful words at the concert.... well you got me.  You are a very sweet, young, talented person with a heart of gold.

Finally....Mr. Edwards, my colleague and friend.  I can't thank you enough for all the support you have given me.  It's so very much more than anyone could ever wish for.

Miss you all to death.

Suzan Muncer.

Monday 30 May 2016

Tuesday Night Final Jazz Concert

After an amazing concert last week on Thursday night with Three.... that's right... count 'em.... THREE STANDING OVATIONS!!!!....... you know that Tuesday night is going to be "Off the hook, Over the Top, and downright Explosive!"

Concert Starts at 7:00PM in the theatre.  If you cannot be there, but have some time you can check it out on line.

Live Concert Webacast

Enjoy our upcoming concert this Tuesday the 31st of May live by simply coming back and visiting our blog on Tuesday, May 31st and watch the show in the embedded video window below.  


Want to share the link to the show with others? Send them this link to the live feed: http://thecube.com/e/651181

Tuesday 24 May 2016

Get ready to watch

Live Concert Webacast

Enjoy our upcoming concert this Thursday the 26th of May live by simply coming back and visiting our blog on Thursday, May 26th and watch the show in the embedded video window below.  


Want to share the link to the show with others? Send them this link to the live feed: http://thecube.com/e/649609

Share Events on The Cube

We'll be on the air at 6:55pm

"Want to enjoy the show in full screen? In the bottom right corner of the video window, click on the FULL SCREEN button.  

Click here to view full screen.

Friday 20 May 2016

Final Concert Dress Rehearsal Schedule

Concert Bands:
Our dress rehearsal will take place on May 26th in the gym

Gr.9 Concert Band - Period 1
Gr. 10 Concert Band - Period 2 (their regular class time)

Symphonic Band - Period 6 (their regular class time)

Jazz Bands:

Dress Rehearsal for all Jazz Bands will take place on the 31st throughout the day.


Period 2 - Jr. Jazz (least amount of conflict as a majority of the band is in Gr.9 Concert Band that meets at that time)
Period 3 - Sr. Jazz (not great timing, but the best under the circumstances - some students coming late from an English exam)
Period 4 - Intermediate Jazz (their regular class time)

Monday 16 May 2016

Final Concerts and the End of the Year

I know it is hard to believe that it is that time already, but as we approach the middle of May, it is important that we look at all of the up coming dates and get ready for the celebration of our successes and the craziness that is the end of the year.

May 20th is the cut off for our last round of sectionals for Concert Band.  

May 25th is our set up for the Final Concert at 5:15PM. As always, we will be needing your help for about 20 minutes.

May 26th will be the dress rehearsals throughout the day for our concert that evening.

May 26th. Final Concert Band Concert.  7:00PM gym - Doors open at 3:30PM

  • Here you will be able to order your band DVD for $20 before and after the concert. The Band DVD contains photos and videos from both concerts and a few candids from throughout the year. It is our only fundraiser and all funds raised go directly back into the program.
  • Students need to be here at 6:00PM
  • This concert will be again webcast - the link will be posted here closer to the concert date.
May 30th - Sectional cut off for Jazz Band.

May 30th - set up for Final Jazz Concert after school. Again, we will only need help for about 20 minutes.

May 31st - Dress Rehearsal for the Final Jazz concert through out the day.

May 31st - Final Jazz Concert at 7:0PM in the theatre.
  • Doors open at 4:00PM
  • Students will need to be here at 6:00PM.
  • This concert will be again webcast - the link will be posted here closer to the concert date.

    June 1st - sign-up sheets go up for Sr. Jazz Auditions. Auditions will take place from the 13th to the17th.

    June 6th - all music music/ folders and method books must be handed in by 3:30PM for sorting by the nines. All instruments that are not being used by students for auditions or Grad Band must also be turned in today.

    June 6th - Final Self-Assessment Due - Everyone else follows the same format except Seniors. Sr.'s are to take their folder home this week and re-read all of the contents. Their final self assessment is of their entire 4 years at Westwood and encompass what it is, if anything, that they have accomplished and/or learned in their time here.

    June 6th to the 28th - Grad Band Rehearsals - No auditions. Students are hand selected by Mr. Edwards.

    June 8th - Grade 9 Sort

    June10th - Gr. 9 Clean.

    June 17th - Last Official Day of Classes

    June 20th (ish) - Band DVD's are available for pick-up.

    June 29th - All instruments go for repairs.

    Thursday 21 April 2016

    Sydney in the News

    Sydney Curell Head Shot
    Congratulations to Sydney for accepting a place on the Red River Rebels Women's Volleyball team for the up coming 2016/ 2017 season.
    Here is the article from the Red River Rebels Site.
    Sydney Curell is a high school senior and will graduate in June with honours from Westwood Collegiate. Sydney started her love of volleyball at Lincoln middle school and continued her participation in school volleyball by playing both Jr. Varsity and Varsity volleyball for Westwood. Sydney has had the benefit of experiencing different coaching philosophies by being a setter for various club teams including Jr. Wesmen, Fury, Visions and Joust. Last year she helped lead her team to a Silver Medal at nationals. She is currently enjoying playing for the SISU U18 volleyball team. When not playing indoor volleyball you can still find her on the court as a certified level 1 official. Sydney is looking forward to being a setter for Red River College’s volleyball team in September and starting on her path to becoming a biomedical engineer..... but we all know it is her love of the Bass Clarinet that really got her focused and she thanks the Westwood Band Program for providing one heck of an awesome soundtrack to her high school career.  #bandatwestwood #westwodbandpride

    Monday 18 April 2016

    Some Thoughts About Music and Children

    One of the coolest things parents get to do is pass on musical knowledge to their children. In the best case scenario, kids develop a love of music at an early age, and express their enthusiasm for good tunes in wildly endearing ways.That’s certainly what happened to Matthew Canning, whose three-year-old daughter, Lily, is obsessed with Led Zeppelin, and is already a whiz at identifying the songs in the band’s catalog.

    In a video posted to YouTube, Canning, who once played guitar in the hardcore band Shai Hulud, plays the beginning riffs of Zeppelin songs on guitar and asks Lily to identify each tune. Casually, she picks at a pack of gum while naming the songs — “Heartbreaker,” “Houses of the Holy,” “Dancing Days,” “Immigrant Song” — like a boss. She nails “Whole Lotta Love” after about half a riff, and stops her dad with a cry of recognition and a halting hand gesture after a few notes of another song: “It’s ‘Black Dog.'”

    Later in the clip, she has a request: “‘Rock and Roll.’ I want to sing ‘Rock and Roll.'” Her dad obliges, of course, although Lily is more keen on dancing around the room to the song. In fact, she gives Robert Plant a run for his stage-moves money as she flails, her Elsa (as in Frozen) dress swirling around her. She stops only to sing the “lonely, lonely, lonely time” line that closes out the verse.

    Basically, this is a case of good parenting all around, producing a super-cool kid. Ultimate Classic Rock gives this clip two metal horns all the way up.

    This article is from Ultimate Classic Rock.com
    Read More: This Three-Year-Old Girl Is the Biggest Led Zeppelin Fan You Know | http://ultimateclassicrock.com/three-year-old-led-zeppelin-fan/?trackback=tsmclip

    Friday 15 April 2016

    Family Concert 2016

    Another amazing night of music making happened Tuesday night in the gym as students from: Phoenix, Robert Browning, Sansome, Lincoln and Westwood got together to share all of the brilliant music making that goes on at all levels throughout the Westwood Family of schools.  From the rains of Africa to an invasion of Pirates, from Brazilian Sunsets to South African marches, from Swinging on Chandeliers to Uptown Funk... it was all there.  The house was packed with an energy and enthusiasm that was palpable and that was not just the elementary students.  The evening even wrapped up with a breakdance competition and students and adults alike dancing to the groove.  Thank you to everyone who participated in this wonderfully dynamic event.

    Tuesday 12 April 2016

    FLOTA 2016 Wrap Up

    What a fantastic and wonderful evening!  Ever hear of one of those party's where you wished you'd have gone because it sounded so wonderful?  ... well if you did not get your ticket to this sold out show, you are one of those people kicking yourself this morning for not being there. What a night!  From the costumes to the high calibre of all the performances, the audience was treated to an absolute stunner of a show!  Congratulations to all of the staff and students involved for creating a simply stunning evening of celebration of student success.

    Wednesday 6 April 2016

    FLOTA Running Order

    FLOTA Running Order

       1.    IB Film                                              “It’s Alive: The making of the artist brain
       2.    Chamber Choir                                 “ Ave Maria”
       3.    Drama                                               “ Every Episode of Star Trek Ever Made”
       4.    Grade 9 Concert band                      “Fire Dance”
       5.    Core Dance                                      “Hivemind”
       6.    Drama                                               “Roman Numerals” 
       7.    Concert Choir                                   “Pata Pata”
       8.    Grade 9 Concert                               “Dynamo”
       9.    Jr. Musical Theatre                          “The Jitterbug”
       10.  Drama                                               “Braces”  
    1 11.   Dance Advances                              “Lost But Not Forgotten”
       12.  Pep T                                                 “Try”      
       13.  Drama                                               “Silly Argument”
       14.  Apex Dance                                      “And Now a Word From Our Sponsors”           


       15.  Concert Choir                                   “ Dona Dona”
       16.  Dance General 10                            “You Promised Me”
       17.  Pep T                                               “ Blank Space”
       18.  Drama                                              “ 4 Yorkshiremen”
       19.  Transcendence                                 “ I’m not the Only One”
       20.  Dance Gen 11/12                             ”Love Makes a Wonderful World”
       21.  Chamber Choir                                “Cornerstone”
       22.  Senior Jazz Band                             “Something Funky”
       23.  Drama                                              “ Bee Circus”
       24.  Transcendence                                 “Chandelier”
       25.  Drama                                               “Princess of the Swamp”
       26.  Dance Gen 9                                    “It Never Killed Nobody…`

       27.  Senior Jazz Band                             "Andromeda"

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