Welcome to Hughes Middle School Orchestra!

Ms. Jimenez-Rodriguez - Orchestra Director

Thank you for your interest in the LHMS Orchestra Program! This section will answer your questions about orchestra in middle school along with providing you important information about registering for orchestra and auditions!

Why continue orchestra in middle school? Answers from current orchestra students!

You have a lot more friends! You learn music a lot quicker. The music is much more challenging than elementary school. In 6th grade, you only play 5 songs a year. In MS, you learn at least 10 songs a year! In ES, you meet by grade/instrument/classroom teacher only once a week for 45 minutes. You get your OWN LOCKER for your instrument and you don't have to carry it around all day! Cellos and basses do not need to carry their instruments back and forth! 

How do you register for orchestra?

Your middle school guidance counselor will come visit your elementary school and give you a course registration form. Simply select, "Orchestra" as your FIRST elective choice. It's that easy!

What about auditions?

Auditions will take place in April, usually at your elementary school. They can also be set up at Hughes Middle School after school (have your parent email Ms. Jimenez-Rodriguez). Students looking to place in a more advanced level will need to complete a successful audition using the music linked below. Please bring the Rising 7th grader information page filled out to your audition. Students who wish to go right into the Concert orchestra (intermediate orchestra) do not need to audition. 

Please email me if you have any questions. I look forward to having you in orchestra next year!


Ms. Jimenez-Rodriguez

Hughes Orchestra Classes

There are three levels of orchestra classes offered at Hughes Middle School. Each class is divided by a different level of difficulty in music as established by the Virginia Band & Orchestra Director Association. 

Concert Orchestra (most 7th graders are in this class)

Performs VBODA grade 0-2 music. A great course for students in need of fundamental technique instruction as well as core music literacy review. 

- No formal audition required!

- Fill out the information sheet and turn it into your strings teacher. 

Symphonic Orchestra

Performs VBODA grade 1-3 music. Tailored to 8th graders looking for that "step-up" from the previous year of orchestra. Great for 7th graders with a more intermediate understanding of technique and literacy.

- D, G, and C major scale

- The first song is Etude 16.

- Your most recent concert song.

Chamber Orchestra

Performs VBODA grade 2-4 music. Offers advanced instruction on instrumental technique and performance. 7th graders with accelerated understanding of technique and literacy as well as studying privately for several years should consider auditioning for this ensemble. 

- A two-octave scale that demonstrates shifting

- Your most recent concert song OR a solo piece you are working on.

- Etude 16 and Allegro Spiritoso.


Etude 16, Allegro Spiritoso, and Audition Scales are linked below for you to print / view to practice. 

Bass Excerpts

Violin Excerpts

Cello Excerpts

Viola Excerpts

Audition Scales

Orchestra Audition Rubric

Please bring this completed document with you when you audition. (Click here to print a copy.)

Rising 7th Grader Information

Your full name (First and last) _____________________________________________________

Nickname (if you have one) _______________________________________________________

Elementary School ______________________________________________________________

Elementary School Strings Teacher _________________________________________________

Parents Email Addresses (Print Clearly!) ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Instrument ______________________________________________________________

The grade you began playing this instrument _________________________________________

Do you take private lessons? ____________________________

If yes, who is your private teacher? ________________________________________________

Have you attended a summer strings camp? _____________________

If yes, which one? ______________________________________________________________

Have you played in an Area Orchestra or youth orchestra (outside of your regular school orchestra)? ___________________________________________________________________

For Elementary Strings Teachers:

Recommendation:         Concert (Grade I-II)         Symphonic (Grade II-III)       Chamber (Grade III-IV)