Brownell-Talbot School offers band as a class to students in grades 5-12. Band instruction begins at fifth grade with true beginners on trumpet, saxophone, trombone, electric bass, and percussion. Students in older grades must have passed the previous requisite years of instruction.
B-T is proud to be pioneering a one-of-a-kind band curriculum that is centered around training students to be jazz combo musicians rather than concert band musicians. This non-traditional approach is a better fit for the small size of our school, and teaches the students more real-world music skills like playing in a small group, improvisation, arranging, music theory, and confidence as a soloist. They learn to play historically significant compositions by important jazz musicians, and play them as they were originally intended. Students who graduate from the B-T band program have the skills to continue playing their instruments in any practical setting for their entire lives.
All students in grades five through twelve perform in concert at the end of each semester. Beginning in eighth grade, students play with the school's Pep Band at selected home athletic contests, and in ninth grade they add many other performance opportunities both during and outside the school day, on and off-campus. Upper school band students have the opportunity to audition for All-State and other honor bands, play at jazz festivals, District Music Contest, and the Frontier Conference Honor Band Clinic, and audition to play solo or small ensemble pieces for the annual Rally for the Arts.