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Band Director Instructions on Ranking & Rating


Please give careful attention to the completion of the Ranking and Rating Form. The placement of students within the band will be based on the information given in this form. Each item will be given a point value. Please consider the following:

  • This is not a competition, but rather an opportunity to give talented high school students an excellent band experience.
  • You must rank every student - both auditioned and nominated.
  • You must rate students who are auditioning. (Tone, Technique, etc.)
  • Students must be enrolled in grades 9-12.
  • We will try to represent as many schools as possible.
  • We must give some consideration to balance of the band.
  • It is in the best interest of the band that out of every three students nominated, at least one is a clarinet, horn, baritone, or tuba. Encourage clarinets, horns, and euphoniums to participate, or we will have a band of flutes and saxohpones.
  • We will try to include everyone's top ranked player.
  • It is in the best interest of the band if the principle players in a section are upperclassmen. Therefore, if a sophomore is your number-one ranked player, they may not be the principle player in a section.
  • If something is unclear, I may call you for clarification.
  • Doane University is in position to offer substantial scholarships to high school seniors for the fall 2023 year. As in previous years, seniors may use their FFW Honor Band Audition as a Music Scholarship Audition. Please encourage any seniors you may have to apply for the FFW so we may get to know them as a performer!


Evaluation Rubric PDF

We have created a Student Evaluation Rubric to assist you in making judgments about your students. The Fall Festival is blessed to be able to have two bands, so together we should try to create an ensemble of the most deserving players who apply and a second ensemble of the best developing players we have. It is very important that you use the rubric to help determine what a fair rating is. If every school accurately rates their nominated students, the bands should be properly formed. We ask that you rate students based on the five elements of performance: Tone, Technique, Range, Sight Reading, and Rhythmic Independence. Each player can get fifty possible points. Please be conservative in your appraisals. Since we need clarinets for the Festival and Concert Bands, if the player has rhythmic issues, rate them as a 3 or a 2 in that category.

If ten students apply from your school, you should rank all students from your program from 1 (your “best” student) to ten (your “least best” student). Your rankings (1 – 10) should generally be reflected in the performance ratings; your number one ranked player should have a stronger performance score than your number ten ranked player. Percussion should be included in your ranking of the winds. No school should have more than one top-ranked student. Please be assured that these ratings are confidential and will not be discussed with or disclosed to students.


Percussion presents a special challenge in that many students are not equally proficient on all percussion instruments. The more instruments a student can play, the more useful they are in the band setting. I will try to ensure that everyone gets a chance to play at least one piece on their strength. Therefore an evaluation in each of the percussion areas is important. When ranking your percussionists, please insert them into the appropriate ranking position in relation to the wind players. REMEMBER: There should be only one student who receives the #1 rank from your school. Failure to do this correctly may negatively impact the placement of your students. As always, please email or call if you have questions.


Students who wish to play in the FFW Honor Band are required to submit a recorded audio audition. Instructions for submitting auditions are available both in the email directions and on the website. All auditions are to be uploaded at

In order to create a balanced Honor Band, we reserve the right to fill out sections with students who have been nominated for the Festival Band but did not audition for the Honor Band. Please be sure to include your students who audition for the Honor Band on your Ranking and Rating form. Include them in rankings and give an evaluation.

Students Who Have Prepared An All-State Audition

Students who are auditioning for the NMEA All-State may upload their All-State audition recording for the Fall Festival of Winds, or they may make a new one.

Students Who Are Auditioning For The Honor Band But Not All-State

Students who are not auditioning for All-State will need to record an audition for the Fall Festival of Winds. 


In this section, we ask you to provide us with any additional information you feel would be important for us to know. Any comment is better than no comment. Here are some examples of what I would find helpful:

-Since we are asking you not to make a saxophone your top ranked player, you may wish that we knew that your alto saxophone was the 1st alto sax in the All-State Jazz Band.

-Sometimes directors have sent in students they really do not wish to nominate, but feel pressured to do so. So in addition to a low rating, you could say something like, "unable to recommend."

-You may also wish to encourage us to place a developing student into the Festival Band.

Please know that we will try to honor all of your requests, but with more than two hundred students being consistently nominated, that may not be possible. Your comments are confidential and will not be discussed with or disclosed to students.



For questions regarding the application process or audition guidelines, please contact Andrew Feyes, Director of Bands at [email protected] or 419-250-2502.