Marching Band


There are many ways to make music at Nansemond-Suffolk Academy!


Lower School student performing

Lower School

In Lower School, music is used in the classroom as a tool for teaching a variety of concepts and to introduce and develop the simple joy of listening to music and making music collaboratively. Beginning in pre-kindergarten, students attend music classes where they develop singing skills, play instruments and learn musical concepts, including melody, harmony, rhythm, form and musical expression. Students share what they have learned through formal and informal performances throughout the year. After-school clubs provide students with additional opportunities to explore their interests and build upon the skills taught in the classroom.


Middle School students performing

Middle School

Exploration continues in the Middle School, where students have the opportunity to discover their interests and passions in the visual and performing arts. In the sixth grade, students participate in a yearlong exploratory course where they spend each trimester studying art, band or chorus. In the seventh and eighth grade, they are able to choose a yearlong course in their area of interest. 

Marching Saints performing at a football game

Upper School

The Upper School offers students many opportunities for enrichment through learning and performing music. There are two sections of chorus, the Intermediate Chorus, known as NoteWorthy, for all aspiring choral students, and the Advanced Chorus, known as VocalPoint, an auditioned group of sophomores through seniors. The students excel in all styles of music, participate in District Chorus and Honors Choir Auditions and perform throughout the Hampton Roads area.
In the Upper School Band Program, students are immersed in a musical experience that expands beyond the classroom setting. They are exposed to diverse musical experiences and literature aimed to prepare them for a deeper appreciation of and ability to participate in musical experiences in college and beyond. Students learn advanced concepts in music theory, musical literacy, critical listening, ear training, and gain an appreciation for musical aesthetics in regards to wind ensemble literature and various performance styles. All students in the Upper School Band also perform in the Marching Band, the Marching Saints, as part of their curricula. The Marching Saints perform at football games as well as in the community by participating in local parades. They are the only independent marching band in the area and foster school spirit and a special musical community for the students involved.
Additional opportunities to perform are offered to Upper School Band students in the form of extracurricular groups, such as the Upper School Jazz Ensemble, as well as small student-led chamber ensembles, which are available upon interest. These chamber groups can include, but are not limited to: flute choir, brass ensemble, jazz combo and percussion ensemble. Skills and concepts learned in the various performing ensembles are showcased in multiple performances throughout the year.

Upper School student performing

Band parents association (BPA)

Parents are encouraged to join the Band Parents Association, a dedicated group of band parents who are responsible for coordinating all volunteer opportunities, including the concession stand at home football games, the Spirit Shop and other fundraising events throughout the year. The BPA also coordinates chaperones for trips and provides hospitality at concerts and events.

Band students in New York City on their annual trip

Beyond the Classroom

The Upper School Band travels domestically each year to perform, participate in clinics led by professional conductors and musicians, and participate in adjudications. Upper school music and theatre students also take an annual trip to showcase their talents and attend a professional theatrical performance. These experiences help the students grow as artists, learn valuable life lessons and grow in their connections with others. 

Upper School students performing

Competitions and performances

Parents, family and friends are invited to attend performances throughout the year that build our students' confidence as artists and showcase their talents. Middle and upper school students audition for All-District and All-Virginia Band and Chorus and place competitively each year. Performances in the greater community foster school spirit and serve as another outlet for our students to give back to our community.