Monday 29 May 2017

Want to watch our concert?

For the past five years we have been live streaming our concerts to the world and we have received countless emails and texts encouraging us to keep sharing out music with you.

There are two way to watch: if you would like to watch the concert via our web site, you can come back Tuesday and Wednesday and the feed below will be live at 7:00PM Central. OR... you can watch by clicking on these links.  Concert Band: and Jazz Band:

These links are easy ways to share via: text, email, snapchat, kik, instagram, etc. our concerts

Thank you in advance to all who watch and take part in this dynamic (good music pun) event.

Final Concert Band Concert:

Final Jazz Band Concert:

Friday 26 May 2017

Band DVD's

As a reminder we will again be selling our world renowned band DVD at the upcoming concert on  Tuesday, which will feature lots of movies and tons of photos from each performing ensemble in the Band Program and including every concert (yep even Wednesday's jazz concert).  This way you do not have to stare at your loved one through a 4 inch screen and can enjoy the concert.  We have been compiling this information over the past year, and we cannot tell you how excited we are about this dynamic project.  This exciting keepsake can act as a supplement to your son’s or daughter’s yearbook (in fact it comes in a sticky backed case that can be attached to the back of your yearbook)  or act as a stand alone souvenir of the “too numerous to mention” accomplishments of the band program.  All orders must be pre-paid and no orders will be accepted after June 2nd. A parent committee will be at the concert on the 30th to take your order.  The DVDs will be available for pick-up some time during the week of the 19th of June in the Band room.  

Pick up a DVD and enjoy a glimpse inside: “band@westwood”          

If you wish, you can print the lower portion as an order form and bring it to the concertwith your cheque, but don't worry the parent committee will have lots of order forms for you at the door.


Each DVD sells for $20.00

Please submit this order form with your payment

DVD Title:  “band@westwood '2014”                       
            Student’s name ____________________________

          Student’s grade ____________________________

TOTAL NUMBER OF DVD’S ORDERD _____ X $20.00 = TOTAL COST  - $ _________ 


Tuesday 23 May 2017

Final Concert and Year End Information

With concerts and year end just around the corner, here's some information for you.  

Set up will take place on Monday, May 29 at 7:30 PM. 

Concert band dress rehearsal will be on Tuesday, May 30: 
symphonic band per 1, 
Grade 10 concert band per 2 
and grade 9 concert band per 3.  

Final Concert Band Concert May 30th in the Gym at 7:00PM

Jazz band dress rehearsal be on May 31st. 

Senior jazz 7AM, 
intermediate jazz per2 
and Junior jazz at lunch.

Final Jazz Band Concert May 31st in the Theatre at 7:00PM

Sectional cut off has been adjusted to May 29th for both Jazz and Concert.

Final Self-Assessment is due June 5

All music must be erased and returned no later than Friday June 7.

All instruments must be returned by June 7th as well with the exception of Grad Band members.


Each year Mr. Edwards hand selects a group of musicians to play at the convocation ceremony. Students will be contacted by Mr. Edwards by June 2nd.

Sr. Jazz Auditions:

Sr. Jazz audition music was distributed on May first to anyone interested in trying out for Sr. Jazz.  Auditions will take place starting the week of June 5th.  A sign up sheet will be posted with available slots.

Westwood Sr. Jazz at Nationals

With little ceremony the group of 25 students and 2 chaperones headed off to Toronto on an average every day evening with anticipation in their hearts and dreams of GOLD floating in their heads.  By 1:35AM we had reached our destination in Niagara Falls and were ready for our pillows.

Morning dawned with a clear blue sky and stellar temperatures as we made our way to the Scotia Bank Convention Centre.  After listening to a few ensembles and getting a feel for the room and the equipment, we made a quick dash for lunch and then it was our turn to represent Winnipeg and our alma mater - Westwood.  Karma was on our side from the get go and sure enough our festival guide turned out to be from Winnipeg, and wouldn't you know it our warm-up room was 204 and lastly... the sound guy was a Westwood alumnus form 1975!.... WOW! You just know its going to go well.

There also was the gold glitter... don't forget the glitter.... if you do not know about this, ask a member of the band.  Thanks Erin.  You made our day even more special.

And I'm not going to sugar coat it..... they nailed it.

As the last notes rang through the performance room you could tell that something special had just occurred.  The next thing we know we are whisked down a hall and sitting in front of our adjudicator, the fantastic trumpeter and educator Jason Logge.  In an ironic twist, he was our adjudicator in 2015 and he remembered all of our pieces from that performance, as well.  Jason is an excellent tactician and clinician and had the students in the palm of his hand from the beginning to end.  He was impressed and the fact that we are consistently bringing this type of ensemble to this festival was not overlooked.  It was his pleasure, he said, to recognize Carter LaFleche on bass, with the honour award; recognizing Carter as the top player of the performance.  Everyone in the band agreed with this decision and there was much rejoicing.

After a quick stop a the photo booth, I led the group down the street to a beautiful vista of Niagara Falls and it was here that they discovered their fate.  The fabulous Ms. Russell took some photos and managed to capture the exact moment that the band found out that they were GOLD champions (again).   Great group of kids and a stunning performance.

Not to be outdone, the Vocal Jazz  got Down and Dirty and gave it their all at their performance Thursday morning. I was privileged to be in the warm-up room and be a part of their process... these truly are Warriors..... not to mention big Queen fans.

After that is all a bit of a whirlwind and then, as if that was not enough, my cell phone rings and it's Neil York-Slader chair of the Instrumental Jazz division letting me know that it would be worth our while to re-arrange our day and attend the Festival Awards Ceremony.  Dumbfoundedly I agreed and the next thing we know, we're sitting an the auditorium and they announce that Shawn LaFrance, Senior Marketing Manager for Pearl Drums Canada is about to award the Outstanding Canadian Drummer award for 2017 to our very own Aidan Clarke.  This award recognized Aidan as that top drummer at Nationals.  And... as a perk, the award not only comes with a cool title for his resume, it also comes with a complimentary drum set from Pearl Drums.  VERY COOL!  On a side note, you may remember that Aidan also won the top drummer at Brandon Jazz Festival the year in March.  Anyhow.... we cheered and none of us expected this amazing achievement to be bestowed on one of our own.

From there..... we go into the heart of Niagara and saw the falls up close, from afar and from above.  So close, in fact, that you literally felt like someone was holding a hose over your head..... the ponchos did nothing.

What a trip. What kids.  What ambassadors for music. You should all be proud of them and shout their accomplishments form the rooftops.... I could not ask for better students if I tried.

Thanks for that. What a life..... I love my job.

Playing a musical instrument good for brain health

  The study found playing keyboard instruments was particularly beneficial for brain health Playing a musical instrument or singing could he...