Who may participate in KCYB?

Membership is open to children in grades 5 through 12 who want to play a wind or percussion instrument. The organization is not able to accommodate string instruments. Although primarily geared toward homeschool students, KCYB welcomes private school students whose school does not offer formal music education. More recently, we have opened membership to public school students who either do not have a formal music education opportunity at their school, or who wish to broaden their music education or level of challenge.

When do the KCYB semesters begin and end?

The KCYB Fall Semester generally begins in mid-August and ends in mid-December. The Spring Semester generally begins in early-January and ends with the Spring Concert in April.

What instrument(s) can I play this year in a KCYB band?

All standard band instruments such as flute, clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, trumpet, French horn, trombone, baritone/euphonium, tuba, and percussion are needed in each of our concert bands. Students may be asked to perform on a secondary instrument to meet a specific concert repertoire requirement.

How many performances will my student participate in?

KCYB presents three required performances each season (not all apply to all bands):

  • November – Fall Concert (all bands)
  • April – TSSBDA Concert Festival (Concert Band, Symphonic Band)
  • April – Spring Concert (all bands)

There are a variety of other optional opportunities open to KCYB students: East Tennessee School Band and Orchestra Association Junior, Senior, and Jazz Clinics, Tennessee Secondary Schools Band Directors Association Junior and Senior Band Clinics, Performer’s Night Solo and Ensemble Showcase, numerous social events, etc.

How much is tuition?

  • Symphonic Band and Concert Band: $150 per semester per student
  • Beginning Band: $100 per semester per student
  • Tuition is due at the beginning of each semester in August and January

What other expenses should I expect?

  • Instrument/Supplies: If your student does not already own an instrument, he or she will need to rent/purchase an instrument (after attending an instrument fitting session), cleaning kit, and music stand. Average cost for instrument rental is $25–$40 per month depending upon the instrument. Lunsford’s Musical Instruments and Rush’s Music are two reputable music stores in our area who can provide detailed information about their rental options and other costs.
  • Concert Uniform: All KCYB students are required to wear a specific band uniform for all concerts (Fall, Spring, Concert Festivals, etc.). The average cost is $50 or less.

What are the participation requirements?

  • KCYB strongly prefers that students commit for the full academic year.
  • Students must take private lessons through their 10th grade year.
  • Students must meet all attendance requirements of rehearsals and performances.
  • Students must be prepared for rehearsals with a working instrument, music, and progressive mastery of the director's rehearsal expectations from previous weeks.

What are the Private Lesson Requirements?

  • A weekly half hour private lesson with a qualified instructor who specializes in the student's instrument is a requirement to participate in KCYB. Anything less should be an occasional exception, such as a holiday, vacation or illness. Cost of private lessons varies, depending on the instructor. Average cost is from $15–$25 per 30‑minute lesson. A list of qualified private instructors can be found in Member Resources.
  • Progress should be made. If your child does not improve over the course of lessons, another instructor might be a better option. Talk to your band director if you feel your student has progressed too slowly. When in doubt, personally observe the lessons over the course of several weeks. Note whether new material is taught, what music is practiced, whether scales begin to sound more consistent, and whether new concepts are presented. The private instructor should provide patient one-on-one attention and specific help that cannot always be addressed during band rehearsal. Make sure this happens in the lessons!
  • Lessons are required during the band year (August through May) and strongly recommended for the summer months until a student has completed their sophomore year of high school. Lessons are still recommended for Juniors and Seniors, but not required by KCYB. Your instructor will appreciate open communication about the activities that your child is involved in so that he or she can help meet goals. Inform your instructor of upcoming auditions, chair challenges, solo try-outs, or clinic auditions. A good instructor will be excited to help you meet challenging objectives. Students should be working on their band music in their lesson, as well as scales, études, and other material the private instructor may assign.

How much should my band student practice at home?

You should expect your child to practice a minimum of four days a week, one hour each day. Your child's band director and private instructor will have specific weekly assignments. The student should practice until improvement is made, focusing on the most challenging passages.