Beginning Band classes are organized each spring.  Your child is invited to join.  

Band is a regularly scheduled academic class held during the school day and there is no charge to take the course.  We hope that you will allow your child to participate in this unique educational opportunity.

The band program at F. J. Carnage Middle School is unique in that we have four ability-grouped concert bands (most schools group ensembles by grade), a percussion class, and an in school jazz bands.  All of these classes meet during the school day.  Band is performance-based, and each ensemble performs in after-school concerts.  Additionally, each year, Concert Band and Symphonic Band participate in a regional Music Performance Adjudication concert that evaluates/assesses ensembles.  Students also have the opportunity to audition/compete for chairs in WCPSS County Honor Band, ECDBA Honor Band, and NCBA State Honor Band.

Band is a unique opportunity for students.  Students who are in band tend to score better in other subjects. Band students also have the opportunity to develop a supportive peer group that could become their friends for life.  Through band, students can get an appreciation of the arts and an artistic outlook toward all subjects.

Students new to band should sign up for beginning band on your elective forms.  Students who have signed up for band will not choose an instrument until class begins in August.  During the first few days of class, students will be evaluated and paired with an instrument that should suit them based on hand size, arm size, lip/mouth shape, and student desire to play that particular instrument.  All students will begin on wind instruments (Flute, Clarinet, Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Horn and Baritone).  No student will begin on percussion (drums).  Students that have progressed well on their wind instrument and show a high level of responsibility will be invited to join the percussion section in the middle of the year.

Students continuing with band (started in Elementary School or had at least 1 year of private lessons on a wind instrument) should sign up for Intermediate Band.  Students who are taking private lessons outside of school (and have progressed past book 2) should email me to set up an audition.  

If you would like more information about band at Carnage Middle School, please visit our website – or email Mr. Pellas at

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Beginning Band FAQ:
My child takes piano.  Does he/she need to start in Beginning Band?  
Yes. While they may know how to read notes and rhythms, wind instruments are very different and require beginning band to learn how to play them.
My child plays recorder.  Does he/she need to start in Beginning Band?  
Yes. While they may know how to play recorder, band instruments are much more complicated than recorder and require beginning band to learn how to play them.
I have a band instrument at home. Can I use it?  
Maybe.  The instrument must be a quality instrument in good playing condition as verified by an instrument repairman or the band director before class starts.
Should I get an instrument before school starts?
No. Students won’t know what instrument they are playing until classes start next year.  
How will I get my instrument and other supplies for class?  
Rental meetings are scheduled for August 30th at 2:45 and 6:00 for parents to rent instruments and purchase other supplies.
How much does it cost to join band?  
Band is free to join, as it is a regular academic class.  However, students are required to rent or buy a quality instrument, as well as other supplies, such as music books and reeds.  If your family cannot afford to rent an instrument (most instruments are $26/month), please speak in person with the band director.
I found a great brand new instrument on ebay for only $100! 
No, you didn't.  You found an instrument that will be ok for a few months at best.  Be sure to purchase/rent a quality instrument from a reputable manufacturer.  Your band directors can help you with that decision.

I look forward to seeing you IN BAND!
Matthew Pellas, NBCT                                         
Director of Bands Director, F. J. Carnage Middle School