• Colony MS Steel Drum Ensemble

    NOTE: We have a trip to Trinidad Jan. 25-Feb. 1.  The group will having a different rehearsal pattern to accommodate this.  The group is only for 8th grade music students.


    Steel Drum will be starting possibly in August (once a week for the trip).  Normal practices will be November on Monday and Wednesday from 2:30-4PM.


    Info below is the 2023-2024 school year.


    NOTE: Steel drum group will be picked in the Fall.  Read the requirements below.


    There is very limited space due to limited equipment.



    Requirements and reason: 

    The equipment and group are not tied to Colony MS or the Mat-Su School District.  It belongs to Colony Calypso community group.  Because Mr. Lambert is the director for the community group and happens to teach at CMS, Colony MS students are allowed to have access to them (to a certain extend).  The drums are not open to any student at CMS without Mr. Lambert’s approval (based on the agreement between Mr. Lambert and the Reynold’s family).  The drums are supposed to be only available for 10th grades thru adults.  So CMS students getting “special exception” to this rule but they have to earn the right to use them (not everyone gets to use them). 


    With the drums belong to Charles Reynolds’ family and they has graciously allows us to use them as long as we take the highest care of them, students must meet all of the following to just to be considered (this is not just of this year, this means from the first day they came to CMS and joined the music department).  Here are the rules for this class.

    1. Students must be in a core music class to participate for the whole year (band, orchestra or choir).
    2. Students must pay a fee of $25 to be used to provide music and upkeep of the equipment (this money is paid to Colony Calypso, not CMS because Colony Calypso is the organization which takes care of the equipment).  There are no scholarships for this (sorry).  There are $66,000 worth of drums that Mr. Lambert is responsible on behalf of the Reynold’s family and the ensemble.  This is the fee that helps with tuning and insurance of the instruments.
    3. Students are expected to be good independent workers (students are good at rehearsing on their own, taking care of set-up/cleaning up, helping others and following directions). Students who have needed to be remind about cleaning up, stay on task and following direction in classrooms music groups, activities or other ensemble will not be considered.  They have to been demonstrating this all the years at Colony MS (6th -8th).  The students are expected to take the time given and use it to work on their assignment-This is a High School Style class.
    4. They must not have behavior issues.  This means no ISS or OSS on their MS records (6th-8th grade), very few SRC referrals (3 or less 6th-8th grade) (student should have zero SRC referrals from Lambert’s classroom) or lunch detentions, poor teamwork abilities, etc… .  There are many times I will give an assignment and tell the group to start to work on the project without me watching over them. That time is to work on materials, not be messing around, playing instrument they are not assigned to or playing incorrectly (on purpose or by accident).  Charles Reynold was concern about the maturity of middle school students with his stuff (able to take care of it and be honest when something goes wrong), and I assured him and his family that responsible students would only be picked.  
    5. Students will protect the equipment to the highest degree.  It cost Colony Calypso $1800 to bring a tuner up here and we need to take care of the equipment.  Again, behavior and work ethics need to been demonstrated to Mr. Lambert (6th-8th grade)
    6. Students need to be fairly confident music reading skills (rhythm and notes). 
    7. Mr. Lambert does have the right to choose students he feels are worthy of this.  This does not mean a student cannot learn steel drums.  If they are not picked (due to not having all the listed requirements), they can still learn them after 9th grade year (as they enter 10th grade) during the summer class, which is what Charles Reynolds originally wanted for his stuff.

    Some benefits of being with this group are:

    1. This is a fun instrument to play.
    2. There are lots of performance opportunities.
    3. As the year moves on, they can join the adult group.
    4. I have a trip to Trinidad for the Pamarama Steel Drum Competition Festival (largest in the world)


    The group will focus on several items:

    1) learning how to play these instruments,

    2) understand the history of the instrument and the music,

     3) improve musical reading skills,

    4) learn to play in an ensemble setting, and

    5) have some fun. 


    There is a research paper that students will be completing for this group.   There is no exceptions to this policy.   This is part of the cultural aspect of the group. 


    Steel Drum Trip to Trinidad- Jan. 25-Feb. 1, 2024

    Yah Mahn!


    If you have any questions, please contact me at 761-1517.