Vibe 2017-2018 Handbook

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Daniel Hand High School Show Choir


Dear Vibe Parents / Students,

Congratulations on being a part of VIBE 2017-2018! We are looking forward to another outstanding year. This information packet is designed to outline my expectations and hopefully answer some of the questions you may have. Feel free to contact me with questions or concerns at .

Thank you! Ron Soja

IMPORTANT!!!! EVERYONE should click this link to add you and your child to the distribution list…even if you have a returning student!!!! If you are not on this list, you will not receive all the info and updates




Director: Ron Soja
Choreographer: Greg Bubba Bussiere
Stage Manager: Rob Speed
Student Presidents: Brinley Engel and Erik Mathews
Dance Captains: Anna Creaser and Tucker Rathe
Secretary: Lucas Fumiatti
Band Maestro: John Gage
Costumes: Jessica Keane and Ethan Richmond
Vocal Captain: Abigail Gautrau
Crew: Jason Noel
VIBE Board
President: Michelle Daniels Treasurer: Susan Reel
Secretary: Lyn Lunn
Financial Advisor: Joanne Speed
Crew Operations Advisor: Rob Speed
Band Advisor: John Gage
Alumni Relations / Historical Committee: Brenda Graminski, Lisa Holloran, Kerry Holmes


Students must check their notifications daily for information/updates. Parents will receive emails weekly.
Students must text DHHSVIBE to 84483 to receive text alerts

Participation Fee



$330 per student in the cast. $200 per student in the band.

This one-time fee will cover the cost of local competitions and transportation. More than 95% of show choirs charge an annual fee of over $1500 to be a part of show choir. We take pride in the fact that we do not ask families to contribute nearly as much as most of the cost is offset through fundraising. The fee also helps offset music licensing fees and choreography.

This fee does not cover any long-distance trips (such as Nashville) and there are other individual costs as well. All students, for example, purchase their own shoes and undergarments.
Our parent-run fundraising organization, VIBE Supporters, is a 501(3)©, accepts tax- deductible donations and handles all of our monetary transactions. We will attempt to reduce and/or eliminate all other monetary requirements as much as possible through multiple fundraising efforts scheduled for the 2017-18 academic year. For any required costs, including this $330 fee that are not covered with fundraising we will make every effort to accommodate payment plans and/or fee exemptions for those who need it.
The $330 fee will be due at our first meeting. We ask that anyone with an anticipated hardship discuss your particular situation with Mr. Soja as soon as possible. Also, please communicate any sudden hardships that will affect payments that will be due. Timely communication is essential to ease the burden of raising funds for your child. It is our goal that all students can participate in show choir regardless of financial hardship.



Show Choir is a class where students receive academic credit. Students must be present at all classes Monday and Wednesday – Friday from 2-3. Just like any other class, a student must have an early dismissal form if they need to leave school early. Unexcused absences will count as regular class skips and result in replacement.



We only work with our choreographer a few times a year. Attendance is mandatory.



August 25 August 26 August 27 October 13 October 14 October 15

3 pm – 9 pm 9 am – 6 pm 9 am – 6 pm 5 pm – 9 pm 9am–6pm 9am–6pm

Performance is the reason we work so hard all year. Attendance is mandatory.

January 7 January 13 February 3 February 10 March 3 March 17 March 22-25

DHHS Cabaret
Mill City Show Choir Festival Central MA Show Choir Festival Tantasqua
CT Classic (our own festival) Nutmeg Show Choir Festival Show Choir Nationals (Nashville)

Performance Etiquette/Costumes/Appearance Standards

Most of each student’s uniform is purchased through the music boosters and used again in future shows. Most years, each student is asked to purchase a small part of their uniform that they will keep at the end of the school year.
No performance is any more or less important than any other. Because of that, students should tend to their appearance (hair, makeup, and uniforms) in the same way every time they are in front of an audience so that our looks will not in any way take away from the audience’s focus on our performance. (The directing staff will clearly communicate any exceptions to this policy.)

Members are responsible for ALL costume pieces purchased and assigned. Garments and accessories must be cleaned and complete for EACH performance. You will not perform if this condition is not met. All assigned jewelry and garments shall be worn appropriately for performances, and no unassigned jewelry or clothing will be permitted. Hair should be worn out of the face and girls should wear stage-appropriate makeup.

No Drop Rule


Decisions about choir membership are made to create balanced musical ensembles. We discourage student from dropping the chosen ensemble once the school year has begun. A one-on-one meeting with the director will be conducted with a student if he/she wishes to drop from the class. Also, please note that non-profit laws prohibit us from refunding any donations made to the program.




Music department policy remains no student will be left out of an activity or music trip because of an inability to pay. The following opportunities are available to ANY student who wants to bring the cost of their show choir expenses down:

Wine and Cheese Event: September or October
Cabaret: January 7 Each student will sell tickets and provide a dessert or beverage to share.
Fruit Sale: October
Ct Classic: March 3
At anytime a person may make a donation to VIBE by visiting the following website and entering credit card information.



Competition days usually consist of an all-day (and sometimes even an all-weekend) commitment. We will travel together by bus and arrive early enough for set up and preparation. This will include the awards presentation and possibly a performance in the evening finals. Before and after our performance, we will support the other show choirs in attendance. Please plan your day accordingly. Some general guidelines for competitions:

1. We attend competitions to watch other groups in addition to performing ourselves. Therefore, the homeroom will be locked when not in use preparing for our show.

  1. VIBE represents DHHS and the community at all times, not just during the performance. Please be organized, well-mannered, well-groomed, and polite for the duration of the contest.
  2. After we have completed our preliminary performance, the student members will go directly to the homeroom and reset all garments for the next performance. Do not leave any articles of clothing misplaced or off of a hanger outside of your garment bag. Any loss of garments could result in removal from future performances and/or expensive replacement costs.
  3. Support other groups and their efforts. Remember: no student wants to be in the world’s worst show choir. Please be respectful of all others in attendance. Do not speak negatively about choirs, students, schools, parents, judges, etc. Rather, choose to celebrate the accomplishments of others.

Grading and participation


Students will be graded at each rehearsal on participation, effort, and responsibility. Students are expected to treat each rehearsal like the performance and give 100%. Each student will be assigned a responsibility task at the beginning of the year and expected to follow through with it at each rehearsal and performance. In addition students will be responsible for bringing their entire uniform to dress rehearsals and performances. The responsibility grade will count as 10% of the trimester grade and will have a direct impact on a students performance eligibility.

Travel Guidelines


As we prepare for our travels, keep in mind the purpose of each trip. Making music of the highest caliber is our first priority. VIBE represents our school, communities and state as musical ambassadors. As such, we carry great responsibility, both individually and collectively. We are called upon to demonstrate for the duration of our travels the very best in personal behavior, integrity, group/team attitude, and, of course, musicality, which is, in turn, representative of the highest standards. Some specific guidelines:

1. Be early to the bus so that we may depart on time. We will not move until all are accounted for. To be early is to be on time; to be on time is to be late. A cardinal rule of touring is that you NEVER keep the group waiting.

2. Our bus time is best used to rest the voice, visit with your neighbor, read, watch a video, and relax. Please avoid shouting and generally trying to be heard over the ambient din of the bus.

3. Please remember that the bus is our home on the road for the tour, and that each member will be responsible to take care of his/her belongings, space and any trash. We are guests on the bus and must treat the vehicle and our space accordingly.

4. You must be quiet in public spaces such as hotels, meeting rooms, convention centers, etc. Please respect the space of other travelers, and of anyone else sharing a room, bus, plane, restaurant, etc.

5. THERE IS A ZERO TOLERANCE RULE FOR ANY ILLEGAL SUBSTANCE. No tobacco, alcohol, or drugs! Any person who violates this rule will be sent home at their expense, and be prosecuted to the fullest extent of school conduct code and the

law. While there will be chaperones present throughout a trip, it is expected that parents send their children on tour only after discussing responsible choices and behaviors. Parents accept full liability for injuries, accidents and events brought about by the behaviors and actions of their child.

6. Each evening, curfew will be established by the director as dictated by the hotel and our evening activities. For your safety and for the integrity of the choir, curfew means to be in your room for the night. After curfew, questions such as “May I go to the vending machines?” or, “May I go to ___’s room?”, etc. will be answered simply, “No.” Any disturbance in hotels or public areas which in any way compromises our roles as musical ambassadors for DHHS and will not be tolerated.

You and your parent must read this handbook CAREFULLY. Signing this contract indicates that you and your parent have read and agree to the obligations stated.

I understand the personal and financial commitment made by a student accepted into VIBE. I have read and agree to all stipulations in the contract. I support my child’s decision to participate in this program.

Parent Signature________________________________________________________________ Student Signature_______________________________________________________________

Please sign the attached permission slip and medical form which will act as permission slips for all the competitions listed on Pg 2 (excluding Nashville)