Monday, November 2, 2015

Paris Trip Meeting: November 9th

Parents and Students,
Please come and hear about the Paris Trip at our meeting on November 9th. Whether you know you are going, or on the fence this trip will answer your questions and concerns. This is truly a once in a lifetime type opportunity that you will not want your son or daughter to miss out on.

I figure it might be easy to address some of the common concerns that come up at a meeting like this. Perhaps this will give you something to consider when you come to the meeting.

Common reasons for not going on a trip:

1) We can't afford it. 

  • Certainly the cost is a very valid concern. But we challenge to you to consider creative ways to set the money aside. 100+ ways to save money Get your student on board and challenge them to start setting money aside/earning the money. I think every kid can benefit from being a part of the process and they will value it more! But what a perfect time for them to learn the value of a dollar and the experience of working towards a goal than before they are out of the house!
Other ways to ease the cost burden.
  • Get involved in fundraising. Everyone wins when you help out. 
  • Think creatively how you can earn some extra money. Get a job, rake leaves, shovel snow, learn how to fix something, tutor a younger student.
  • Write a letter and send it to relatives and close friends. Explain what you are doing, why you are doing it and why you are going. Follow up with each letter and see if they might be willing to help out. 

2) I've never been to Europe, why should my son or daughter? 

  • The world is becoming increasingly global. More and more jobs benefit from this global perspective. Going on a trip to Europe in high school is the first step to opening up the globe to them in way that we could not understand when we were young. 

3) It's just a band trip, why can't we just travel to a bowl game?

  • This trip is about much more than band. Yes, band is what brings us together for the trip, and sharing music with other cultures is an awesome experience, not to mention sharing it with more than 100 of your friends. But this trip is about a true educational experience. Students get a rich education in History, Art, Commerce, Language, Food, Culture, Politics, on top of music.
  • I've done the bowl games, and Disney, etc. At the end of the day, I walked away feeling like I just took a vacation trip. But after these Europe trips, I feel like I've changed my student's world... That's why we go overseas.

4) Why do we have to travel at all?

  • Ultimately we don't. This is something that as a band director who has taken numerous trips, I have seen over and over that the opportunity to be a part of something special like this is completely worth all the extra effort that goes into making it work. The trips are part incentive, part experience and education. I encourage you to make it an incentive with your own son or daughter. It will motivate them!

I'm sure you have other things-please come to the meeting on November 9th at 6:30 in the Small Auditorium to find out more!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Curriculum Night 2015

Welcome Parents 2015-2016!!!                      

Our Philosophy of Music Education

Everyone can be successful in music and enjoy it.
Art education is unique and enriches our life
It fosters creativity, expressiveness and appreciation of beauty.
Grows the creative side of the brain, unique to the arts.
Develops commitment and self discipline
Creates friendships.
Our Expectation
Do your best.
Respect those around you.


Mandatory-they are our exam/summative assessments

Policies stated in the handbook (available in canvas)
Uniforms cleaned once over summer, other cleanings are responsibility of the student. Concert uniform includes a pair of black dress pants, ALL BLACK shoes and socks and a tuxedo shirt which will be ordered in October through us for about $16. Ladies will be given a dress and should wear black hose and shoes.

Performance Dates

  • WE/SB/CB December Concert- Dec. 10
  • WE Only: At University of Illinois in conjunction with U of I Concert Band (Tuesday night)- Feb 23
  • WE/SB/CB March Concert- March 10
  • WE Only: Wind Ensemble Invitational Concert with Lincolnway North High School and Elk Grove Village High Schools- March 18
  • SB/CB: Clinic at LZHS-April 15
  • WE Only: Hersey Invitational Band Festival-April 16
  • WE/SB/CB May Concert-May 5


You won't hear the end of this... Students playing on a beginner horn will find it harder to do what we ask them. Playing an intermediate or professional instrument matters. It's like a calculator-yes you can still add, multiply, divide, and subtract on a basic calculator in High school, but you need all the other functions of a TI-84 when you get to High school math. Students have proven they are going to stick with it-if possible try to reward them with an instrument that plays and sounds better.
MINIMUM: Upgrade their mouthpiece.
Talk to a director before you buy!! We want to help-it's a significant purchase!


Our main student fundraisers are Poinsettias, Manna Cards, Cheesecakes and Coffee. Poinsettias are a HUGE fundraiser for students, so it would be good to get involved with this. If you can help out, please do-we depend on parents to make this run! Manna cards are another way to make money, consider taking advantage of this program.

Private Lessons

Best way for a student to improve on their instrument. Offered at school during lunches, study halls, before and after school.
Cost is $24-$26 for a half hour lesson.


We have been invited to perform in the New Year's Day Parade in PARIS, FRANCE!!! This trip will take place at the end of 2016 and New Year's 2017. The parade route is incredible. The trip will be an 8 day trip and will cost about $3000-$3200. All marching band students are invited to participate. The trip has not been officially approved by the board, but they have supported these trips in the past. We are letting you know now so you can plan. We will be having a meeting as soon as the trip is a GO!

BBLZ/Friends of BBLZ

  • BBLZ is an organization for the purpose of supporting Lake Zurich Bands and families. They raise funds to provide scholarships, commissioning musical pieces, organize volunteers, plan events, and provide support to the directors. This group has become an essential organization for the success of our Band! 
  • Friends of BBLZ is a program that we are growing to allow Alumni and Community Members to support the band in a meaningful way. You will hear much more about this program this year.
  • Please consider becoming part of BBLZ and help make the band stronger!

Web Page Resources

Facebook: LZHS Marching Band Parents Page 2015-2016
Twitter: Follow @LZHSBand
Voice Mail-847-540-4319

Tuesday, September 8, 2015


The new year is upon us. The band just got back from Northwestern Band Day-representing Lake Zurich amongst more that 2000 HS and college musicians at halftime of the NU-Stanford Game.

We are less than 2 weeks from our first Home Football game and anxiously awaiting performing for  twice as many people in our new bleachers.

Lots of great things in store-check back for more posts, or better add us to your RSS feed so you know when new things are added. Also check for the lastest band info.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

LZHS Band: a brief retrospective

LZHS Band 2014-2015

Another year is coming to a close. What a great year we've had. Just a quick sampling of pictures that I took this year. I know I didn't get everything! Not a single picture from a regular band concert! But I'm sure others have those to share! Some unbelievable experiences and a WONDERFUL senior class that we are saying goodbye to. I hope you all had as good of a run as I did! Thank you for all your efforts!!! Mr. Thompson
Our first pregame!!!
Ninja at Camp
Seniors before the year-Band Camp
Marching band in the fall at Sarah Adams

Drumline at a game

NU band day

More Northwestern Band day
Looking the wrong way...

Jazz Ensemble at Northshore Jazz Fest-best group shot ever!

Jazz Combo at Jazz in the Meadows

Jazz Lab band in New Orleans
Pep Band at Northwestern Home Game

The house we helped paint in NOLA-One of many great projects students completed!

Playing for Warren-Easton Charter School

The Pit orchestra for Anything Goes!
Selfie with Wind Ensemble at Orchestra Hall

Wind Ensemble at Orchestra Hall!

SENIORS 2015!!!!
Jazz Ensemble concert-a little Saxophone Cannonball Run!

Jazz Ensembles in NOLA!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Jazz Ensembles heading to New Orleans

For the third time, the Lake Zurich HS jazz ensembles are heading to help rebuild New Orleans, as well as learn about the city where jazz got its start and to play a couple gigs.

The trip includes a performance in Artillery Park, right in the heart of the city, and a performance at Warren Easton Charter High School for many of the music students of the school.

Students will also spend three days volunteering for the His Hands2 Go organization, where they will do many home improvement and home repair projects for area residents.

The students have also raised funds to donate to various organizations on the trip, including $1000 to His Hands to Go, $750 to the music department of the Warren Easton Charter School, and $750 to Covenant House New Orleans where they will also donate some materials to help the residents. Covenant House is an organization designed to help young men and women ages 16-21 get off of the streets.

Students will also see the Dukes of Dixieland on the Steamboat Natchez and the Preservation Hall All-Stars.

The trip leaves after school on Friday and returns early the following Friday morning...
If all goes well, you'll be able to see more blog entries along the way...

College and Music-Win/Win!

Worried that you can't get EVERY class you think you need to get into college? Worried that if you don't get those 6 AP classes your...