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Mr. Burdett  teaches the 6th, 7th and 8th grade orchestras at Harmon Middle School and two high school orchestras; Concert Orchestra and Philharmonic Orchestra.
Mr. Burdett earned his Bachelor's of Music Education from Kent State University in 1999 and a Master's of Education in Measurement and Assessment from Kent State in Dec. of 2008.

He has performed violin in the Cleveland / Akron area for the past 17 years including a concert in Playhouse Square with Christian Recording Artist Michael W. Smith and as Principle Second of the Tuscarawas Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Eric Benjamin.  Mr. Burdett has also contributed his talents to three CD's, the latest with singer/songwriter Jessie Barr called "Along For the Ride" released in 2014.

Mr. Burdett lives in Aurora with his wife (Katie), 8 year old daughter, Ellie, 6 year old daughter Aubrey and 3 year old daughter Julia.

You may reach Mr. Burdett at jburdett@aurora-schools.org or by phone at (330) 954-2130.

A great way to stay connected is through the "Remind" text messaging service.  See below for more information on how to sign up.

Check out our website at www.auroraorchestra.org

Want to see great pictures of the students at concerts and events such as the Fall Hayride?  Like us on Facebook.

Check out Mr. Burdett's Youtube channel for instructional videos as well videos of the orchestra concerts.  I will be working this year to upload concerts from our archives.

2016-2017 Orchestra Calendar
Please click on this link to see the calendar.  Please add these dates to both the student's and the parent's personal calendars.  All dates are subject to change.  Parents will be notified of any changes through the teacher's website and through the "Remind" text service.  It is ultimately the student's responsibility to communicate calendar dates to their parents.
The best way for Harmon parents and students to keep up to date with school assignments is through the Homework Hotline section of Harmon Middle Schools webpage.  Orchestra assignments including Practice Journals and upcoming assessments can be found on the homework hotline.  Assignments for the week are posted each Monday and are updated throughout the week.
Orchestra News
Video for substitute - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0Y6NPahlDE&t=2s
The 8th Grade orchestra will be joining the 7th and 8th grade choirs at the Cedar Point Music Festival.  Please see the student / chaperone Handbook for the finla information about this event.  Remember that we need Request For Administration of Medicines Form for all medicines including over the counter meds such as Advil or Tylenol.  I need all permission slips to ride with a chaperone or to stay at Cedar Point later by Wednesday, May 10th.


The AOA Spring Party has been cancelled today due to school being cancelled today.  We are looking at rescheduling the event and more information will come out next week about the new date.


The 2017 Jr. High OMEA Solo and Ensemble Event will take place Saturday, April 8, 2017 at Stanton Middle School in Kent.  Participants, please check the information below.  Please make sure you have an original of your music with measures numbered for the judges.  Cellos and Basses, please make sure you bring a rock stop or donut.

Event Information and Performance Times

Stanton Middle School Map

Stanton Middle School Parking Map



The Aurora School Orchestras would like to thank the following businesses and individuals for their support of our Steak and Strings fundraiser. Without their generosity we would not be able to help fund our outstanding Orchestra program. Thank You!

 A.O.A Abigail's African Safari Wildlife Park Akira Sushi & Hibachi Akron Civic Theatre Akron Fossils & Science Center Akron Racers Women's Softball Akron Rubber Ducks Akron Symphony Akron Zoo All City Candy American Commodore Tuxedo American Eagle Outfitters Angelo's Pizzeria Applebee's Aurora Auto Wash Aurora Community Theatre Aurora School of Music Auto Zone B.A. Sweeties Ballet Theatre of Ohio Bella Design Jewelers Jan Brett Brickman Music Buffalo Wild Wings Bar & Grill Cafe Tandoor Caffoe Family Central Instrument Company Chagrin Valley Roller Rink Cheryl's Gymnastics & Beyond Chick-fil-A- Macedonia Cinnamon Bear Cleveland Browns Cleveland Cavaliers Cleveland Cinemas Cleveland Coffee Company Cleveland Gladiators Cleveland Metroparks Zoo Cleveland Orchestra Club Rock Cookies by Design Crazy But True Popcorn Crystal Nails Cup Caked Dairy Queen Don Basch Jewelers Doskocil Family El Camino Embassy Suites by Hilton Pittsburgh Int'l Airport Escape in 60 Essential Zen Fantasy Candies Federated Auto Parts First Flip Gymnastics Fleming's Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar Fun N' Stuff Fussy Cleaners Gaydos Family Gervasi Vineyard Giant Eagle-Bainbridge Gionino's Pizzeria Goldston Family Golf Dome Gordon Food Service, Inc. Granite City Food & Brewery Guardian Technologies Guitar Center Guy's Pizza Hannes Family Hodgson Mill Homer Laughlin China Homewood Suites- Solon Impressions Styling Studio Improv Comedy Club & Restaurant International Women's Air & Space Museum J & K Subway John Robert's Spa K & M International Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex Kent State Ice Arena Kings Island Ladies & Gentleman Salon & Spa Lake County Captains Legacy Village Change for Charity Let's Paint Levin Furniture Tami Levine L'Oreal PPD Lowe's Greenhouse Mad Jack's Grill & Pub Maggiano's Mantua Grain & Supply/Mantua Flags Maps Air Museum Mary Ruth Books Inc. Mazzulo's Memphis Kiddie Park Mill Distributors Miller Boat Line Mishan Nail Salon Mitchel's Brothers Ice Cream MoLo Hair & Spa National Artcraft Nicole James Salon Nina Michelle Salon Oasis Yoga Spa Ohio Magazine Ohio Wine Producers Assoc. Oswald Companies Papous Tap & Grille Janice Parker Family Petitti's Garden Center Pepsi Playground World PlayMatters Psycle Dr. Frank Radis Rock & Roll Hall of Fame & Museum Rock Auto Rockne's Roseland Lanes Rosen Shingle Creek Resort Rotek Rusty Bucket Salon Patrick Salon Strands Sam Ash Music Corp. San Diego Taco Factory Shearer's Sheetz Cindy Skok Snap Fitness Snip-its Haircuts for Kids Snow Trails Southwest Airlines/AirTran Kevin Spring Station 43 Stearns Violins Step2 Taylor Guitars The Bailey House The Cheesecake Factory The Humphrey Company The J.M. Smucker Company The Latest Scoop The Longaberger Company The Melting Pot The UPS Store TNT Tanning Dr. Jim Tomko Trader Joe's Trolley Tours of Cleveland TTI Floor Care N.A. Umbra University of Akron Bookstore Valley Art Center Visualizations Photography Walden Inn Walgreens Walt Disney World Waterway Car Wash Wayside Workshop Wellspring Studio Wenger Orthodontics Wheel of Fortune WhirlyBall/Laser Sport Wildlife Garden Windmill Golf Center Zip City


the AHS Orchestras have produced a professionally recorded holiday CD.  We are very proud of how good our students sound and wanted to give you the opportunity to hear them and maybe even purchase a CD for only $10.  CD's can be ordered online at www.auroraorchestra.org  through paypal, but they must be ordered by this Saturday.  CD's will be available for pick up before and after the AHS Orchestra concert on December 13th at 7:00 PM.


Please see the attached wave file to hear one of the songs from the CD.  The titles on the CD are:

Away In A Manger

Deck The Halls


Ding Dong!  Merrily on High!

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

O Come All Ye Faithful

O Holy Night


Silent Night

Chanukah, Oy Chanukah

Three Holiday Songs

We Wish You A Merry Christmas

Parent volunteers are needed for the Aurora Orchestra Association Barn Party (which takes place on Friday, October 7) to help the event go well and students to be safe.  Please follow this Sign-up Genius Link to volunteer.  Thank you.
SMART MUSIC UPDATE:  Parents and students.  We are using a new version of Smart Music that is web based and works on Chromebooks.  This program is just out of Beta testing and it still has several issues.  We are aware of the problems and are asking parents and students to be patient when working on assignments.  If there are technical problems that make it so you cannot do your SmartMusic assignment, please just let Mr. Burdett know and do not worry.  As these bugs are fixed the program will become better and will become the valuable tool we know it can be.
Welcome back to school!  I hope you have had a fun and relaxing summer break.  I am looking forward learning and growing and making music with you this school year.  Parents: please take a moment and complete any necessary information in the following areas to make sure this school year goes smoothly and so your children can be successful.
1. Parent/Student Contact Info
2. Orchestra Calendar Date
3. Parent/Student Communication through "Remind"
4. Parent Volunteer opportunities through "Sign Up Genius"
5. Review the Orchestra Handbook so you understand all rules and obligations
6.  Orchestra Open House Information
Parent / Student Contact Info
Communication is very important.  Most information that you will need for the year is found on this website, however it is occasionally necessary to share changes, add information or even send out simple remind messages.  Often that will be done through the free "Remind" service mentioned below.  However, for longer or more complex messages we will send out emails or even call home.  Please complete the Parent/Student Contact Form so we can stay in touch. If your contact information changes during the course of the school year, please let me know.  Additionally, please feel free to contact me via email at jburdett@aurora-schools.org (preferred) or by phone at (330) 954-2130.  In most cases I will get back to you within 24 hours during the week.
2016-2017 Orchestra Calendar Dates
   Please click on the Orchestra Calendar for an up to date list of concert dates and events. This is a Google Doc and any changes to the calendar during the school year will be reflected here.  I will try to notify you through Remind if there are any changes.
Parent / Student Communication

  Communication is very important.  Because we want to communicate in the best manner, we are doing away with the Charms email system in favor of "Remind".  The benefit is you can choose to receive communication through email or text and you are in control of when you want to end the service.

If you are a 6th Grade orchestra parent or the parent of a new orchestra student then you will need to sign up for this free service with one of the links below.  If you had already signed up for Remind last year and your information has not changed, then you don't need to do anything.  If you ever change your email or phone number, simply reply to one of the messages and respond "Unsubscribe". Then go to my website and resign up with
your new email address or phone number.

Harmon students and parents can find out how to sign up for texts or emails by clicking HERE

High School orchestra students and parents can find out how to sign up for texs or emails by clicking HERE
You will receive some duplicate messages that pertain to everyone if you
sign up for both, but some messages will be specific to each group.
If you have graduated or are no longer in orchestra and you want to stop receiving information, please follow this link to the Remind website on how to un-enroll from the class.
Parent Involvement and Volunteer Opportunities
You've heard the phrase "many hands make light work" - this is especially true with the Aurora Orchestra Association.  This is the only booster group that provides opportunities and services to students at Harmon and Leighton as well as the high school.  We need your help to be able to continue to do this.  We are asking each orchestra family to sign up for 2 events.  It could be something as simple as baking cookies for concert refreshments.  There are opportunities for all abilities and interest levels.  Simply click on the link below and sign up to help for the event that interests you.  Already signed up but you can't remember what you volunteered for?  No problem.  Click on the link below and you will be able to see what you volunteered for.  Its easy because we are doing it together.  


Orchestra Handbook

The orchestra handbook is very important for understanding all rules and procedures.  Please take a moment and become familiar with this document.

Orchestra Handbook


Orchestra Open House Information

If you were unable to attend open house this year I have the packet posted online.  There is also a link to the Aurora Ultimate Boosters Membership Form.  HS students will also need the Uniform Cleaning Fee Form and HS Boys will need the Tuxedo Shirt/Bow Tie Order Form in the next section below.

Open House Packet

Ultimate Booster Membership Form


High School Orchestra Uniforms

Uniform fittings for incoming freshmen and new HS students take place on schedule handout day each year.  If students missed that opportunity, then we will size students during class with the first several weeks of school.  Every HS Orchestra student needs to pay the Uniform Cleaning Fee each year.  This form is handed out in class and is also available here - Orchestra Uniform Cleaning Fee

Male HS Orchestra Students will also need to purchase their own white Tuxedo shirt and black bow tie.  We can order these in bulk and get a better rate than you generally find in the store.  You are welcome to purchase the shirt and bow tie through us or on your own.  If your bowtie and shirt from last year still fit and are in good condition, then there is no need to order a new one.  The form is handed out in class and is also avialable here - Tuxedo Shirt / Bow Tie Order Form


Starting in September, orchestra students in grades 6-12 will be using the New Smart Music assessment program.  This is very similar to the old version we have been using for the past two years.  The advantage of this new version is that it is completely web based and can be used on any device including Chromebooks.  The new version is also much more affordable - costing around $8 per student for the entire year.  The program is being completely funded through the Aurora City Schools and the Aurora Orchestra Association this year so parents will not need to pay anything this year.  More information about how to sign up for the program will be coming out in September when the program rolls out nation wide.  We will be using this program closely with our Practice Journals and for assessments so all students will be required to use the program.