Intermediate Orchestra is open to both 7th- and 8th-graders who have played Violin, Viola, Cello, or String Bass (NOT electric bass) for at least 2 years (or who have the director’s approval). The class is a full-year elective, and will focus on improving technique through the use of method books, large ensemble work through a wide variety of literature, and the opportunity to participate in small string ensemble groups as well. Students perform in several concerts throughout the year including a local California Music Educators Association Festival in the Spring and a festival as part of a day trip to Great America in Santa Clara.
Advanced Orchestra is for 8th graders who have played 3-4 years on their instrument, and at least one year of orchestra at Hopkins. It is a full-year elective, and requires the instructor’s approval for the student to enroll. Special accommodations can be made for 7th graders who are advanced on their instrument. The Advanced Orchestra performs at a very high level and guides students to a new level of musicianship. Students have many performance opportunities during the year. They will also travel to Anaheim, CA (Disneyland) for a music festival, as well as perform for a California Music Educators Association Festival in the Spring. For the past several years, the Advanced Orchestra has been the “Best Middle School String Orchestra” in California!
Full Orchestra (or “Symphony Orchestra”) is made up of selected members of both Advanced Orchestra and Wind Ensemble. Full Orchestra rehearsals take place approximately twice per month outside of the regular school day. It is a full-year commitment. The orchestra focuses on both well-known symphony orchestra repertoire, along with more contemporary orchestra literature utilizing winds, percussion, and strings. Students perform at the Winter and Spring Orchestra Concerts on campus.