Mr. Maguda's Website

Mr. Maguda conducting


    Please browse this website to find important information about the Mendon High School Music Department as a whole or more specifically about the Concert Band, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Jazz Ensemble, Pep Band and Pit Orchestra at MHS as well as philosophical information about my approach to and goals for each of these ensembles.


    Feel free to contact me at anytime at or 267-3865.



    Current Information:

    In order to make this homepage most relevant with up-to-date information, you can now find older information and assignments as follows:

    NYC Travel Insurance information:  go to MHS Music Department, then Trip Information

    Concert Band:  go to Curricular Ensembles, then Concert Band

    Wind Ensemble:  go to Curricular Ensembles, then Wind Ensemble

    Applied Music Credit:  go to MHS Music Department, then Applied Music Credit


    Office Hours will always be on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00-10:30 a.m. for Concert Band and from 10:30-11:00 a.m. for Wind Ensemble using the Zoom ID and password that were sent out in an e-mail. 



    Honors Distinction: complete the form at this link 



    Applied Music Credit (Piano & Guitar):  complete the form at this link







    June 4th NYC Travel Insurance Update:

    We are still in the process of retrieving refunds from vendors on your trip.  Travel Guard insurance cannot payout a claim until we are able to provide all refundable amounts in the form of direct payment to families.  We will do so immediately following receiving all expected refunds for your trip.  Once all of this happens, Travel Guard will be paying out approved claims for any money that is unable to be refunded through us.  We appreciate your patience and understanding.
    Thank you,
    Jeffrey Athoe
    Sales Manager
    1st Choice Educational Tours





    June 3rd Update & Assignment:

    As we enter June, we’re at the stage of tying up loose ends, so this message will focus on one more assignment and what you need to know before coming into the building next week.


    Assignments:  A number of you really stepped up your game and got caught up on past missing assignments.  It was wonderful to see a flood of creative responses in my inbox.  There are, however, quite of number of you who still have not turned in the most recent Melody (composition/transcription) assignment.  Please continue to work on that. 

    The high school instrumental teachers have been working together to come up with meaningful music assignments during this shutdown and now we’d like to get your feedback.  This is especially important in case we need to continue this distance learning approach in the fall.  Please complete this reflection through the link below by Wednesday, June 10th.



    School Items:  When you come into school next week to clear out your lockers as well as return textbooks and other items, there will be a music table in the commons and here is what we’d like you to return.

    All County Music:  I received music back from 4 out of 15 all county musicians before our shutdown in March.  If you are one of the remaining 11 students, please bring in this music in its original envelope (labeled with your name) and drop it in the all-county box on the music table in the commons.

    Missing Original Band Music:  Here a list of original parts that are still missing from the songs we had worked on throughout the year.  Please look at home for these to return.



    Missing Parts

    Songs of the West


    flute 1 (1 copy)



    percussion 3/4 (1 copy)

    Toccata Marziale


    flute (2 copies), solo clarinet (1 copy), clarinet 1 (1 copy)

    Black Horse Troop


    flute (2 copies), clarinet 1 (1 copy)

    Fanfare & Flourishes


    mallet percussion (1 copy)

    A Long Time Ago


    alto 2 (1 copy)

    The Frim Fram Sauce


    alto 2 (1 copy)


    School Owned Instruments:  Please email me the brand and serial number of any school owned instruments you currently have at your house.  Also, let me know if it needs repair and if you would like to keep it for the summer.  Otherwise, plan on returning it to the music table in the commons.  There will most likely be a QR code for you to scan with a form to list what you dropped off.  If you would like to request a new instrument to use for the summer, please email me immediately so that I might be able to have it ready for pick up next week.


    Personal Items:  All music rooms should be unlocked and open for you next week.  I removed all pad locks from the cage room (with the exception of 2 personally owned locks) and discovered that some of you still had some personal items in the cages.  Please stop down to the music wing next week to pick up anything that belongs to you.



    I hope all of this information helps you get organized for your visit to school next week.  Feel free to reach out with questions or hop on tomorrow’s Zoom meeting.

    Take care everyone.


    Mr. Maguda




    May 20th Update & Assignment:

    School Owned Instruments & Summer Instruments:  It’s time to play test any school owned instruments you have at home so we can figure out if they may need some attention at the repair shop to play their best.  Please spend some time testing them out (with full range chromatic scales) to see if anything isn’t speaking properly, then send me an e-mail stating either the problem or that it is playing well.  Also, if you would like to borrow a school owned instrument for the summer, send me an e-mail with your request.


    New Melody Assignment (Composition or Transcription of a Melody): recorded in Infinite Campus (due 5/28/20)

    To date most activities and assignments for high school instrumental musicians have been about listening to and responding to music in various ways.  We have had you give short answers looking for your insights on the assigned work.  For this next assignment - we want to hear you PLAY something again!  Here are the two directions this assignment can go:  (Choose One!)

    1:  Compose A Short Melody - We know that there are many levels of comprehension and ability about what this might look like.  Some of you already compose and use programs like Finale to get your ideas down.  Others might enjoy creating melodic bits at the piano, especially if you have taken piano lessons.  Even if you have never gotten a musical idea on paper - this could be done by all of you!  Whether you jot ideas down on a bit of staff paper or a napkin doesn't matter - we just want to hear your idea.  To be fair, it should be perhaps 16 measures in length.  You would need to consider musical elements such as key, mode (major or minor etc.), form (have an A melody and maybe a B melody).  All you have to do is record yourself playing your creation - maybe give it a title.  This should be done on your "usual" band or orchestra instrument unless you request to do it on something else.  


    2:  Transcribe a Melody from Another Source -  Let's say you've always enjoyed the theme song to a favorite TV show, commercial, something you heard on a video.  Sit down and try to figure out this melody on your instrument!  Some melodies are on the simple side, but don't translate well to certain instruments... you may find it's in a "nasty" key.  You could, however change the key and still maintain the melody.  (Transpose it).  If you choose to transcribe a melody you'll have to figure out how to "save your work".  If you jot it down on staff paper or some other way, remember the goal is just to be able to perform and record it when you're done, so whatever works for you.  Let us know where you heard the melody, its title, etc.  

    Again - our goal is to hear you play, not to have you write a symphony 😊.  You may record it in any way that works, but will need to be able to place your recording in an e-mail for us.  This will be due on May 28th - after Memorial Day.  If you're unsure of a direction for this, or want any clarification, reach out to your director.  Have fun!





    May 13th Update on Honors Festivals:

    Area All-State:  Since there is no spring solo festival, next fall’s Area All-State will be based on teacher recommendation and I'll be able to attach both last spring's solo sheet and this January's sheet to support my recommendation.  Usually this process does not take the January county scores into consideration.  Area All-State is scheduled for November 20-21, 2020.
    Conference All-State:     NYSSMA has released very specific parameters for next December’s Conference All-State festival.  Only current juniors who registered for an all-state level 6 solo audition at last spring’s solo festival (2019) and who scored a 98-100 will be eligible for this December’s Conference. 
    I'll be working on this recommendation process for both festivals starting today, so please let me know if you’d like to be considered for these opportunities.




    May 6th Assignment:

    This week, I’m asking you to check out one more task based on the music standard Respond and one more task based on music standard Perform.  In order to be sensitive to those who are preparing for the upcoming AP exams, you will have 2 weeks to complete these assignments (with no new assignments given next week).


    RespondDeep Listening Assignment (recorded in Infinite Campus, due 5/19)

    Background:  In March, a wonderful article was published in the L.A. Times about deep listening.  We have streamlined and summarized the article for you to read.  Then, we want you to choose an entire album to listen to (uninterrupted) and answer some reflective questions about your experience.  The article and questions are both in the link above.


    Concert Band Perform (not recorded in Infinite Campus):  I added a new assignment in Smart Music asking you to learn the final section of Emperata Overture.  Simply log onto Smart Music, look up your part to Emperata and start practicing from letter M to the end (slow to fast) until you are ready to submit a recording through the program.


    Wind Ensemble Perform (not recorded in Infinite Campus):  We’re going to complete the third (and final) movement of the English Folk Song Suite.  Simply log onto Smart Music, look up your part for English Folk Song Suite, movement III and start practicing from the Trio to the D.C. (slow to fast) until you are ready to submit a recording through the program.






    April 29th Assignment:

    This week, I’m asking you to check out one more task based on the music standard Respond and one more task based on music standard Perform. 

    RespondHeritage Assignment (recorded in Infinite Campus, due 5/6)

    Background:  If you grew up as a young child in the United States, you probably learned American folk songs such as Yankee Doodle, Old MacDonald Had A Farm, and Oh, Susanna. For this assignment, I would like you to take a deeper look at your roots and find music that is common in your heritage. It could be a favorite song that an older relative sang to you when you were little, music used for celebrations or religious events, or music that you stumbled upon when looking up the music of your heritage. If you are unsure of your roots, this is a fantastic time to get your family involved. Not only will you learn more about your family, you will probably hear some great stories in the process!

    Assignment Questions (submit through the forms link above):

    1. What is your heritage? Feel free to include any interesting details you may have learned when discussing with your family (e.g. my Grandfather's family came from Ireland and my Mom came from France, etc.)
    2. Please find a piece of traditional music from your heritage on YouTube and copy+paste the link in your response. You will be using this video for the following questions.
    3. What is the purpose of this music - is it a teaching song (like the ABC's), a sacred piece of music (used in religious services), a ballad (tells a story or cultural tale), a traditional dance, etc.? Please explain using examples from the recording.
    4. Please list the instruments used, as well as their function in the music (drone, chording, percussion, etc.)
    5. What are the defining qualities of this music in regards to the composition? Think about details such as keys, rhythms, and other things that make it sound like music of your heritage. Feel free to compare/contrast to American folk songs.
    6. What inspired you to choose this piece of music over others you may have listened to?  Does it hold special significance to you? Please explain.


    Concert Band Perform (not recorded in Infinite Campus):  I added a new assignment in Smart Music asking you to learn the middle section of Emperata Overture.  Simply log onto Smart Music, look up your part to Emperata and start practicing from letter F to letter M (slow to fast) until you are ready to submit a recording through the program.

    Wind Ensemble Perform (not recorded in Infinite Campus):  We’re starting the third movement of the English Folk Song Suite.  But, before you go to Smart Music to learn your part, take a look at the attached lead sheets for the two folk songs this movement uses (Blow Away the Morning Dew & High Germany) to get a sense of the story these songs are trying to convey.  Then, start practicing measures 1-68 of moment 3 in Smart Music and submit your recording when you are ready.


    Have fun with these assignments and let me know if you have any questions.

    Mr. Maguda






    April 22nd Assignment:

    As I shared with some of you yesterday on Zoom, the music department will be rolling out assignments on Wednesdays with a due date a week later.  I’m going to give you 2 components, one to address our music standard Respond and one to address our music standard Perform.

    Respond:             Movie Night (due 4/28, recorded in Infinite Campus)

    Background:       There are many iconic moments in movie history that resonate with people over generations, not only because of a well-crafted story or believable acting, but also because of the intense emotions created by the film’s music. Listen to the way John Williams changes the feel of this scene from Star Wars: Episode 4 from sorrow and mourning (at the loss of Obi Wan Kenobi) to building anxiety for the impending attack.  He actually named the fight music after Princess Leia’s line “Here They Come” (at the 1:05 mark).

    Assignment:      What is your favorite movie soundtrack?  Do you know why?  Re-watch that movie with the following questions in mind and take notes about the soundtrack while watching.  Optional: If available, attach a youtube link to an excerpt from the movie to support your answer.

    Movie Title _______________________________________        Year Released __________________

    Soundtrack Composer ________________________________________

    1. Describe the mood that the composer is trying to set with the very first musical notes of the movie (not the movie studio theme prior to the actual movie). Knowing the movie as well as you do, why do you think the composer wrote the first notes as he/she did?
    2. Does the movie use only original music (composed specifically for this film) or does it also use familiar/popular songs to help set the time/era or move the plot along?
    3. Does the composer use different recurring themes for specific characters or situations (i.e. leitmotif)? If so, describe examples.
    4. How does the composer enhance action or tension on screen through the music?
    5. How does the composer enhance connection or attraction of the characters (i.e. love interests) through the music?
    6. What other movies did this composer write for?


    Perform: Wind Ensemble (not recorded in Infinite Campus):  In addition to the previous Smart Music assignments (breaking up the first movement of the English Folk Song Suite (Seventeen Come Sunday) into sections and followed by a full run through), I added a new assignment asking you to learn the entire second movement (Intermezzo: My Bonny Boy).  To help you understand the character of this movement, I made lead sheets (attached in all transpositions) for you to learn the melody and read the lyrics filled with heartbreak and unrequited love.  Once you are familiar with the lead sheet melody, then log onto Smart Music, look up your part to movement 2 (Intermezzo: My Bonny Boy) and start practicing until you are ready to submit a recording of the movement through the program.

    Perform: Concert Band (not recorded in Infinite Campus):  In addition to the previous Smart Music assignments (breaking up A Childhood Remembered into sections and followed by a full run through), I added a new assignment asking you to learn the first large section of Emperata Overture.  Simply log onto Smart Music, look up your part to Emperata and start practicing the beginning to letter F (from slow to fast) until you are ready to submit a recording through the program.

    Have fun with these assignments and let me know if you have any questions.

    Mr. Maguda



    April 13th Assignment:

    Critical Listening Assignment (due Monday 4/20 by noon):          As you know, the district is starting new learning this week.  One of the best skills musicians should develop is their critical listening.  You are all accomplished musicians who have developed opinions about music you like or don’t like.  The challenge is to describe why that is.  So this week, I’d like you to choose 2 clips from the following list of important band pieces to give structured feedback on.  I’d recommend skimming each clip to hear which 2 catch your ear as being interesting, then open the google doc link to see what questions are being asked. Answer the questions after listening/watching the complete clip.  Complete the same questions for both of the pieces you select.  This assignment will be marked as complete/incomplete in Infinite Campus.  Here are the assignment link and list of youtube clips to choose from.


    El Camino Real (Alfred Reed)

    Divertimento For Band (Vincent Persichetti)

    Incantation and Dance (John Barnes Chance)

    Chorale and Alleluia (Howard Hanson)

    March from Symphonic Metamorphosis (Paul Hindemith)

    Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral (Richard Wagner, arr. Cailliet)

    Shine (Julie Giroux)

    Children’s March, “Over the Hills and Far Away” (Percy Grainger)


    Smart Music Reminder:                A number of you have already submitted playing assignments through Smart Music.  I would encourage you to work on the assigned sections and record yourself through the program when ready.  Don’t worry about the red note/green note designation (as it is very picky with accuracy).  I’m not concerned with percentage correct, but rather just hearing if you are getting the piece down.  There will be more playing assignments through Smart Music in the future, so I want to be sure you are all getting used to using the program now.  Directions for creating an account were e-mailed previously and are also on my website.





    April 7th Message:

    I had a lot of fun putting together this video message just to say hello.  Enjoy and be well.






    2020-2021 Concert Band & Wind Ensemble:

    Thank you for your patience with the performance assessment/Wind Ensemble audition process that we nearly completed prior to the school shutdown.  It was wonderful to hear you put so much effort into preparing the required materials.  Please know that I see great potential in all of you and I thank you for your work.

    Each year, this is a challenging process as there are so many motivated students.  The primary aspect I am looking for in all auditions is skill readiness, readiness to tackle the very advanced repertoire that the Wind Ensemble performs that is demanding with technique and exposed with intonation and soloistic passages that require a developed sense of expression.  This is why we had so many discussions about goal tempos and opportunities to add extra dynamics to or bring out existing expression of your etudes.  A secondary aspect I consider is rate of learning.  The Wind Ensemble not only plays very advanced music, they also learn a large amount of repertoire at a much faster rate.  This is why there was a limited timeframe on the audition process (prior to the shutdown disrupting that).   Another aspect I consider is group/instrumentation balance.  Like any team activity, there has to be a balance of all roles on the team for success.  A team is ineffective when they have too many defensive players and not enough offensive players.  Both of our teams/ensembles should be balanced for success.

    As you can imagine, this year’s process was disrupted by the school shutdown and we had to make some modifications.  Most students were assessed while school was still in session.  Those students had their assessment grade posted in Infinite Campus and were considered for next year’s Wind Ensemble as well.  Most of the remaining students submitted a video once the shutdown started.  These video submissions were not graded, but were used to consider placement in next year’s Wind Ensemble only.  Because the counseling department now needs the roster for both Concert Band and Wind Ensemble to complete their scheduling, any students who did not complete the assessment/audition while at school or who did not submit a video from home were placed in the appropriate ensemble based on their performance consistency and growth throughout the school year.

    Having said that, I have attached (below) the Concert Band & Wind Ensemble rosters for next year.  Know that I am proud of all of you and am very excited to work with the collective talent of both groups next year.















    Congratulations to the following musicians who were selected to this year's NYSSMA & MCSMA Honors All State Festivals!


    Jr. High Area All State

    Grace Wu (flute), band
    Jenny Zhao (flute), band
    Ella Henry (French horn), band
    Ethan Hess (French horn), band
    Natalie Schnose (trombone), band


    Sr. High Area All State

    Katherine Huang (flute), orchestra
    Emily Oldfield (clarinet), orchestra
    Madeleine Eckhardt (French horn), orchestra
    Kathy Yan (flute), band
    Olivia Harkin (clarinet), band
    Sydney Grossman (clarinet), band
    Sadie Oldfield (alto sax), band
    Molly Collins (trumpet), band
    Sadie Wallis (trumpet), band
    Alex Pogharian (euphonium), band
    Owen Oldfield (tuba), band
    Lauren Romanick (clarinet), alternate
    Emma Stenzel (trombone), alternate
    Libby Merkel (snare drum), alternate



    Conference All State

    Emily Oldfield (clarinet & alto 2), Symphonic Band & Treble Chorus
    Katherine Huang (flute), alternate
    Kathy Yan (flute), alternate
    Sadie Oldfield (alto sax), alternate
    Alex Pogharian (euphonium), alternate


    MCSMA Jazz All-County

    Sadie Oldfield (alto sax)
    Molly Collins (trumpet)
    Peter Foley (bass)


    MCSMA Classical All-County

    Katherine Huang (flute), orchestra
    Kathy Yan (flute), band
    Grace Wu (flute), band
    Jenny Zhao (flute), band
    Lauren Romanick (clarinet), band
    Sydney Grossman (clarinet), band
    Emily Oldfield (clarinet), band
    Olivia Harkin (clarinet), band
    Sadie Oldfield (alto sax), band
    Claire Cunningham (alto sax), band
    Johanna Merkel (alto sax), band
    Molly Collins (trumpet), band
    Madeleine Eckhardt (French horn), band
    Alex Pogharian (euphonium), band
    Libby Merkel (timpani), band









FAME Cabaret Night

Mr. Maguda conducting

Memorial Day

Mr. Maguda conducting
JFK Library

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