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Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we get about the Friends of Music organization and performing arts offerings and requirements at Needham High School.

Questions About FOM

Q: What is the mission of NHS Friends of Music (FOM)

The FOM mission is to support and enrich in-class and extracurricular music and theater programs at NHS while also championing the success of the students they benefit. We like to think of our organization as the Needham High booster club for performing arts.

Q: How does FOM achieve its mission?

FOM fulfills its mission in three main ways:

  1. Raising money through our fall annual appeal and fundraising concerts such as Winterfest and A Cappella Go

  2. Providing volunteer and monetary support to faculty, students, programs and events by awarding scholarships, serving food at rehearsals and performances that run through meal times, coordinating volunteers for NHS-hosted district events such as MMEA, sponsoring ensemble uniforms and other ways

  3. Building a welcoming, engaged community of performing arts advocates at our general meetings and volunteer social receptions

Visit our About page for a fuller description of what we do.

Q: How do I get involved FOM?

FOM welcomes new volunteers at any time. Visit our volunteer page to learn more about opportunities to get involved or contact us to get on our email list. One of the best ways to learn about who we are first hand is to attend one of our General Meetings.

Q: Is there a fee to join FOM?

There is no fee to join FOM; however, as a 501(c)3 nonprofit with fundraising being a major part of our mission, we encourage you to participate in our fall annual appeal and come to fundraisers like Winterfest and A Cappella Go (they’re fun!). In addition, we welcome private donations all year long. Here’s where to  donate online.

Q: How does FOM raise money?

FOM’s primary source of fundraising income is our fall annual appeal, which we execute via snail mail campaign. Please contact us to get on our mailing list. We also hold two fundraising concerts every year — Winterfest in early December and A Cappella Go in mid-winter. You can also easily donate online, anytime.

Q: How do I make a monetary donation to FOM?

There are two ways to donate: 1) Online with a credit or debit card or PayPal account; and 2) Send a check made out to NHS Friends of Music, Inc. to NHS Friends of Music, Inc., P.O. Box 920026, Needham, MA 02492

Q: Is my donation to FOM tax deductible?

Because FOM is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, all donations you make to us are tax deductible.

Q: How are FOM Board members and committee heads chosen?

FOM Board officers are elected annually via a nomination process at one of spring meetings, usually in May. Most of our Board officers have been involved in the organization for at least a year in a leadership capacity. To ensure the organization can continue to run smoothly as parent volunteers age-out with their students, we try to have two officer (co-chairs) for every function. Committee chairs and co-chairs are not elected; most are parents of music and theater students who raise their hands to help or are invited to join by existing Board and committee members.

Q: What social opportunities are available for FOM Board and committee members as well as the families of music and theater students?

It’s fun to connect with the parents and families of your student’s music and theater peers! To help facilitate these connections, FOM holds two adult-focused social receptions every school year off school grounds — a Welcome Reception in the  fall and Appreciation Reception in June. Volunteering to help out at concerts and events is also a fun, easy way to meet other parents. When you put your name on our email list, you’ll automatically get FOM “Signup Genius” emails when we’re recruiting volunteers for specific events. Contact us to make sure you get FOM emails.

Q: How do I get updates on FOM events and volunteer opportunities?

FOM actively and regularly promotes what we do and various needs through an email newsletter.  Contact us to get on our distribution list.


Questions About Performing Arts Offerings & Requirements

Q: Where can my student get information about the NHS Marching Band?

Have your student contact the NHS Fine & Performing Arts department to learn how to join the marching band, which practices after school. Visit the NHS Marching Band website for an overview.

Q: How many concerts/performances is my student required to participate in every year?

Your student’s music teacher will provide a list of required concerts available at the beginning of the school year, which includes the NHS graduation ceremony on June 3, 2019. In addition, NHS ensembles usually participate in district-wide festivals Including MICCA — the Massachusetts Instrumental & Choral Conductor’s Association. Get a list of known Concert Dates, here.

Q: What is meant by a “required concert?”

For students in a music class, concerts are graded assignments, making them a requirement for passing the class.

Q: Is there a concert dress code?

Yes. Visit the Concert Attire page for an overview.

Q: What does SAMD stand for?

SAMD is an acronym for “Students Acting to Make a Difference,” a student-run theater group that stages a musical every fall to raise money for a charity. The group receives advisory support from the NHS theater faculty and a professional director. Auditions are held in the spring. FOM Visit the SAMD website for more information.

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