Orchestra, Band, and Choral

Senior Juries Requirement

Although Orchestra is truly its own area, it works in sync with choir, band, dance, and the drama department. The orchestra classes are taught by the very talented Edith Ellis, who has led her students to impromptu concerts such as the one pictured in the photo gallery of the opening of the presidential library and the dedication of the trolley cars in downtown Little Rock. Other areas of the community where the music department is involved include Parkview at the Rep, Medieval Feast, Hillcrest Harvest Fest, Arkansas Drug Free Youth, Festival of Stars, Holiday Parades, Special Event Planning, Spring Musical, Musical Revue, Holiday Concerts, Spring Concerts, Youth Orchestra, Jazz Band at the Governor's Mansion.

To see honor cord requirements, click here.

Ellis has been with Parkview for about 20 years, but has also taught at Booker-Arts Science Magnet, Geyer Springs, and Woodruff elementaries, and at Henderson and Horace Mann Middle Schools. Her passion for her art is apparent, and she can be found each day after school patiently tutoring her students to perform to their full potential.

        There are three levels of orchestra classes: I, II, III, IV. Students taking orchestra as their area of study must take two classes from the music area each year. Those courses include the following:

  • Music Theory I and II
  • Pre-AP Music Theory III
  • AP Music Theory IV and V
  • Lab Singers I and II
  • Choir I, II, III, and IV
  • Vocal Ensemble (female)
  • Madrigals
  • Woodwind I
  • Brass I
  • Percussion I
  • Survey of Fine Arts
  • Concert Band
  • Symphonic Band
  • Symphonic Orchestra
  • Jazz History
  • Orchestra I, II, III, IV

About the Orchestra classes

Beginning Orchestra
This class is designed for the beginning student and will concentrate on the fundamental concepts of correct playing position, learning the notes in first position and basic rhythmic skills. Playing as an ensemble and performance situations will culminate in the second semester open to all students ninth through 12th grades.

Intermediate Orchestra
This class is designed for the student who has studied an orchestral string instrument prior to the ninth grade. Concentration will be placed on expanding reading skills and introduction of notes in third position. Extensive ensemble playing provides opportunities for several performances throughout the year. Open to ninth grade by audition only.

Intermediate/Advance Orchestra
This class will concentrate on continuing to expand the students' knowledge of orchestral techniques establised in earlier years of playing. Extensive use of third position and more complex ensemble playing will allow the students to perform throughout the year. Examples are all-region orchestra, all-state orchestra, solo ensemble which involves various community performances such as IMAX (for American Express) Pyramid Art Gallery, Medieval Feast, or other community based experiences.

Other recommendations
Mrs. Ellis strongly encourages orchestra students to take private lessons and participation in the Arkansas Youth Orchestra.

Edith Ellis, Orchestra Department Chair
Education: BME University of Central Arkansas.
Honors: Ellis has served as an adjudicator since 1993. She was a guest Clinician at All-Region Orchestra in 1988 and in 2000 for All-Region Orchestra in Conway. She hosted all-region tryouts at Parkview. She has served as a judge for all-region auditions, all state tryouts, and governor school auditions. She is the string manager for the All Region Orchestra. She is also a member of the NEA, AEA and LRCTA, The Arkansas Band and Orchestra Directors Association and Arkansas String Teachers Association.

Carolyn Foreman, Choral Director, Fine Arts Coordinator
Education: BME, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, M.ME University of Central Arkansas in Conway.
Honors: 2003-2004 and 2004-2005 Central High School Choir Director and Central Region Junior High School Director in 1994. Her choir has performed for President George W. Bush, and helped compose a program in honor of the memory of those who died on 9-11 at Robinson Auditorium. She is a member of NEA, AEA, LRCTA, Arkansas Choral Directors Association, Arkansas Music Educators Association, and has served as both secretary and vice president of general music in that association.

Carlton McGee, Director of Bands 
Teaches: AP Music Theory, Jazz Band I & II, Marching Band, Concert Band, Wind Ensemble,and Percussion Ensemble.
Education: B.S. & M.A.T. – University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, M. Ed. – University of Arkansas at Monticello
Honors: Founding board member, director, and treasurer of the Arkansas Alumni/All-Star Band; new teacher of the year in Greenville Public Schools, 2003-2004; judge for all-region tryouts; member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity, NAfME, ASBOA, NEA, and IAJE.

Kelly Rush, Piano I through IV
Education: BME Music Education
Honors: She began teaching as a choir director at Lakeside High School in Hot Springs, before moving on to the UALR graduate school for social work and then to UCA for counseling psychology.  While at UALR and UCA, Mrs. Rush continued to study piano and voice before returning to teaching at Cloverdale Middle and eventually at Hall High School where she took her Madrigal ensemble to Carnegie Hall to perform under the direction of John Rutter.  Mrs. Rush taught choir for a total of 20 years, as well as teaching private voice and piano lessons. Mrs. Rush began playing the piano at the age of five.  During her high school, college, and her teaching career she has accompanied for soloists and choral ensembles. 

Mary Shollmier, Assistant Choral Director
Teaches: Choir I-IV, Concert Choir, Vocal Ensemble, Labsingers, and Madrigals.
Education: BA Music at Hendrix College; MeD Secondary Education, University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
Honors: National Board of Professional Teaching Standards certification, 2010; Teacher of the year, Mayflower Middle School 2000-2001; PTSA Teacher of the year Dunbar Middle School, 2004-2005.

Devonna Whited, Assistance Band Director. Director of the Parkview Symphonic Band III, Cadet Band, Assists with the Parkview Marching Patriot Band and Symphonic Band IV.
Education: Bachelor of Music Education (Instrumental), University of Central Arkansas. Master of Music Education (Vocal), University of Central Arkansas.
Honors: Mrs. Whited has served as the Director of Bands for the Mayflower School District. She taught beginning band, intermediate band, senior band and choir. Whited has worked as marching caption head for Delta Brigade Drum and Bugle Corps, Arkansas' only division III Corp. An active member of the Arkansas Chamber Singers, Whited performs regularly in central Arkansas and surrounding areas and in special productions in partnership with the Arkansas Symphony.




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