Choir at New Braunfels HS
New Braunfels High School is a dynamic high school offering students a variety of opportunities to engage in a rigorous and well-rounded education. Fine Arts education is essential to the development of a New Braunfels high school graduate as it fosters the creativity, self-discipline, and leadership skills essential to a student's success in their future higher education and in the workplace. The NBHS Unicorn Choir is a major campus organization with four performing ensembles. Students perform regularly in the community and compete both as ensembles and individually. The Unicorn Choirs are recognized as some of the best ensembles in the area, consistently receiving UIL Sweepstakes awards. Many Unicorn Choir students regularly place in the Region Choir and some have gone on to place in the prestigious Texas All-State Choir. Our students consistently receive acceptance and scholarship to some of the most prestigious higher learning institutions in Texas upon graduation. In addition to being an integral part of the student's education, students repeatedly site choir as a place they belong in high school, a community, and a family that they depend on during their high school years.
Creativity is as important in education as literacy and we should treat it with the same status - Sir Ken Robinson
In the NBHS Unicorn Choir we believe that a comprehensive education in choral music at the highest level provides students with valuable skills as they enter the collegiate environment and ultimately the workforce.
Some of our students choose a career in music. These students are provided the opportunity to develop their skills during high school and prepare for the difficult task of music school auditions during their senior year. There is a great deal of merit based scholarship money available to students entering music school which many of our students are able to secure. We invite you to see our alumni page to see how many of our students receive substantial financial assistance in college through their participation in the choral program.
Most of our students do not pursue music as a career, but through their participation in music during high school they expand their creativity, expressive ability, reasoning skills, ability to work collaboratively, and ability to process the abstract. In addition to these concrete skills our students often reference the social aspect of the choral program and the environment of "family" and emotional support the program provides them during their time in high school.
Whatever the reason for participation in the choral program at NBHS, we strive to provide every student with a foundational music education that will allow them to be participants in and consumers of music throughout their lives.
Dan Pink, best-selling author on business, behavior, and education
Putting Together a 4-Year High School Plan
Success in a high level fine arts program is a result of continuous focused instruction and practice. The choir program at NBHS is designed to provide a 4-year curriculum that builds skills each year of instruction. Completing this 4-year cycle in addition to the basic high school requirements will result in students receiving the Arts & Humanities Endorsement on their high school diploma. Most of our students begin the program after having had superb instruction at one of our NBISD Middle School Choral Programs, however, we also accept new students into the high school program and have entry level choirs designed to provide these students with the tools to excel in our program. It is possible, and we encourage students, to be a part of multiple programs at NBHS including Fine Arts, Athletics, and our rigorous academic program. The new HS Graduation plans combined with the NBISD high school schedule offering 32 possible credits makes it easy for students to develop a plan for high school that allows a broad education with many enrichment opportunities.
What Course Do I Choose?
Students are placed in choirs based on experience and ability level at NBHS. You may read more about our audition process in our online choir handbook and learn more about our individual choirs HERE. You can also see the complete NBISD Program of studies which describes the NBISD Choir Curriculum in detail HERE. When making course selections please use the following guidelines noting that when courses are built the NBHS choir directors and counseling department will make the needed changes to make sure you are in the appropriate ensemble. You do not need to audition before requesting choir as a course. We accept all students into choir at NBHS and make a determination of exact choir placement based on auditions, experience, and references from middle school choral directors.
INCOMING 9th Grade Students
For most students entering NBHS Beginning Choir I serves as our introduction to high school choir. This course continues on the skills built in middle school choir and prepares students to advance through the comprehensive choral program during their time in high school. No audition is required for Beginning Choir I.
If you are an advanced singer and sight-reader, with experience in middle school choir, a record of consistent academic eligibility, and a proven record of classroom discipline, you may audition in 9th grade for placement in Choraliers, our JV Mixed Choir, Choralier Men I (boys) or Choralier Women I (girls). Please see our AUDITION PAGE for further information. You may choose this choir during your initial course selection process however schedules will be modified to put you in the proper level after auditions.
9th Grade students may also audition for placement in one of our Jazz Choirs. Jazz choirs are an additional enrichment elective that can be taken in addition to the primary choir class. Auditions will be held May 9-10 at NBHS with callbacks scheduled for May 23. The correct course choice for this ensemble is Choir Vocal Ensemble I. You may choose this course during course selection, but only students selected after the audition will be placed in a jazz choir. We work with the counseling department after the completion of auditions to resolve these schedules. Students enrolled in Vocal Ensemble must be concurrently enrolled in a primary choir ensemble.
CURRENT NBHS Students
If you are currently in choir you will be auditioned during the Spring Semester for placement. When making your initial course requests, simply choose the choir that you think you will be a part of during the next year. After auditions, you will be able to select the proper class period.
Jazz Choir auditions will be held on May 9-10. Please see the AUDITIONS page for specific audition instructions.
Frequent Questions & Myths
Q: What choir should I sign up for?
A: See the information above and use your best judgement. After auditions the counselors will make any needed adjustments to your schedule.
Q: How do I audition for choir?
A: If you are currently in choir at NBHS, NGC, NBMS, or Oak Run MS you will be given audition information during your choir class. If you are not currently in choir you may contact Mr. Thomasson at NBHS email@example.com for more information.
Q: How can I change my schedule after Career Cruising is closed?
A: We will be able to change your schedule for you. Do not be concerned with the scheduling deadlines as it pertains to choir. We can fix it!
Q: Choir does not show up for an option for me in Career Cruising, what do I do?
A: Contact Mr. Thomasson at firstname.lastname@example.org, we can fix this.
Q: Choir shows up as an option for me in Career Cruising but it isn't the correct choir class, what do I do?
A: Contact Mr. Thomasson at email@example.com, we can fix this.
Q: I'm interested in auditioning for Jazz Choir, should I go ahead and sign up for it?
A: Sure! We are thrilled you want to be a part of our Jazz Choirs. We will sort your schedule out after auditions.
Q: I have another class that conflicts with the choir class I need to sign up for, what do I do?
A: Contact Mr. Thomasson. In most cases we can come up with a solution for you.
MYTH: Participating in choir will harm my GPA and class rank.
A: In NBISD only core classes are considered as part of your class rank. Many of our choir students are also academically driven students who graduate in the top 20 students of their class.
MYTH: I don't have time in my class schedule to participate in choir.
A: With 8 class credits available per year and the hybrid block schedule that removes double blocking of athletics there is more than ample time for a student to take choir throughout their time in high school AND be involved in multiple other activities.
MYTH: Choir requires too much after-school time.
A: While there are a few out of school commitments (typically about 4 days per year) for all choir students the other activities of the choir program are optional. A student may choose to immerse themselves in the program and be engaged often outside of class or they may choose to enjoy the benefits of choir by participating primarily during their class.
Have a question that isn't answered here? NO PROBLEM! Contact Mr. Thomasson at firstname.lastname@example.org. We want every student at NBHS with an interest in singing to be a part of our Choir. We will help you!