Master of the Alphabet

“Master of the Alphabet” is a competition developed by Debra Haburay, director of bands at Forestwood Middle School in Flower Mound, Texas.

​The objective of “Master of the Alphabet” is two-fold. It develops pulse and subdivision coordination for middle school level students. It also develops the understanding of the musical alphabet and its use in scale combinations (except for the sharps and flats).

Requirements for “Level 1” Listings (minimum requirement for all band students) 
Sit up straight and tall while you perform. You must count and pat the “beat” with the metronome at 60 beats per minute. You must perform each line by memory (super easy, you just start on the next letter each time, but it does require practice!). You must say 1 letter per beat.

Requirements for “Master of the Alphabet” Master Level:
You must say 2 letters (notes) per beat – eighth notes – forwards AND backwards on each line (the last note is a quarter note, which allows you to transition to the next line). Transition immediately into each new line with no rest or break in between lines. No mistakes can be made.

Requirements for “Super Master” 
Sit up straight and tall while you perform. You must count and pat the “beat” with the metronome at 60 beats per minute. You must perform each line by memory (super easy, you just start on the next letter each time, but it does require practice!) You must say 4 letters (notes) per beat – sixteenth notes – forwards AND backwards on each line. Transition immediately into each new line with no rest or break in between lines. No mistakes can be made.

Requirements for “Ultra Super Master” Listings 
Sit up straight and tall while you perform You must count and pat the “beat” with the metronome at 60 beats per minute. You must perform each line by memory (super easy, you just start on the next letter each time, but it does require practice!) You must say 8 letters (notes) per beat – thirty-second notes – forwards AND backwards on each line. Transition immediately into each new line with no rest or break in between lines. No mistakes can be made.

Click here for a metronome and set the beat to “60” to practice. It is totally okay to set it slower, but do NOT set it faster!

DO NOT practice for “super master” or “ultra super master” until you can do “master.”