Mandarins Academy Summer Camps FAQ

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Please see the following list of frequently asked questions for more information. If you have any questions that are not answered below, please send an email to

Q. What is the Mandarins Leadership Camp?

A: The Mandarins Leadership Camp is a two-day, overnight summer camp for high school student leaders. Our program provides students with the tools, tips, and techniques to become effective leaders once they return to their bands. We accomplish this through demonstration and experiential learning in small group settings. The intent is that students will be equipped to effectively support their band director’s vision and goals. All students will have the opportunity to work with different educators and clinicians throughout the camp weekend.

Q: What are some of the topics that will be taught at the Mandarins Leadership Camp?

A: Topics include conducting, core values and the power of relationships, public speaking, running an effective rehearsal/sectional, score study, servant leadership, supporting your band director and their vision, team-building/collaboration, and understanding group dynamics/personalities.

Q: Who are the educators?

A: The Mandarins Leadership Camp is led by educators and clinicians who have over a hundred years of experience in music, performance, and leadership education. All educators have strong academic and hands-on experience in band leadership. Many of the staff have taught with the Sacramento Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps and are professional educators in Northern California and other parts of the country. We will also have college-aged male and female camp counselors to assist student leaders throughout the camp. All educators receive a thorough background check through a national registry. Read staff biographies in the educator links below.

Milt Gee Mandarins Academy Director
Santiago Sabado Mandarins Leadership Camp Director
Marvin Reed Mandarins Leadership Camp Assistant Director
TBA Educator
TBA Educator
Becky Stewart Camp Counselor
Jeremy Parlin Camp Counselor
Jim Tabuchi Leadership Consultant
Q: How does the Mandarins Leadership Camp compare to others in the area?

A: The Mandarins Leadership Camp teaches leaders in a real-world, real-time World-Class Drum Corps setting. Student leaders will be taught on campus where the Sacramento Mandarins Drum and Bugle Corps will be rehearsing AND competing. They will have an opportunity to "eat, meet and greet" with the Mandarins members. Students will get a once in a lifetime, behind the scenes view of rehearsals and may have an opportunity to conduct the Mandarins brass line! The camp will conclude with a ticket to the DCI Capital Classic drum corps show that the Mandarins host, so students can see a performance of the Mandarins and many other drum corps.

Q: What does the Mandarins Leadership Camp cost?

A: $200, with a $20 discount available to all who register before June 1st. The registration fee covers the cost of the staff (educators, clinicians, and camp counselors), music compositions for score study, housing and meals, materials, a Mandarins Leadership Camp T-shirt, and a ticket to the DCI Capital Classic Drum Corps show at the end of camp.

Q: What is the age and experience requirement?

A: The Mandarins Leadership Camp is intended for 9-12 grade students who have completed at least one year of high school band experience.

Q: Do I have to be a drum major to attend the Mandarins Leadership Camp?

A: No, the Mandarins Leadership Camp is open to all who are aspiring to be student leaders in their high school bands. This includes drum majors, field conductors, section leaders, and guard captains as well.

Q: When is the Mandarins Leadership Camp?

A: Camp begins with check-in at 7am on July 5th. Camp ends with the conclusion of the Capital Classic Drum Corps show at approximately 10pm on July 6th.

Q: Where is the Mandarins Leadership Camp held?

A: Monterey Trail High School and Edward Harris, Jr. Middle School in Elk Grove, CA.

Q: Will I be marching?

A: There will be some marching to demonstrate effective teaching skills to clean marching basics for both parade and field. Wear comfortable athletic shoes and attire.

Q: What will the educators expect that I have?

A: 1-gallon water jug. Band instrument, if you have one, for score study and leadership application-based activities. Layered clothing for outdoor weather that can fluctuate from early morning to late evening. Notepad and pencils. Most importantly, a positive attitude to learn and a lot of energy to play!

Q: Since this is an overnight camp, what do I need to bring?

A: Change of clothes for 2 days, sleeping bag, air mattress, pillow, toiletries, towel, shower shoes/slippers. Plastic drinking cup for meals. Items to keep you busy during downtime. Students will be responsible for their personal belongings.

Q: Can band directors and parents observe the Mandarins Leadership Camp?

A: Yes.

Q: Where will students be sleeping?

A: Students will be housed in gender-separate facilities monitored by a camp counselor.

Q: If a student doesn't want to spend the night, can I pick them up at night and bring them back in the morning?

A: The camp experience is part of the learning process for students. Their activities will last until midnight and then start up again at 8:00 in the morning, so we encourage students to spend the night. If there is a need for an exception, please email Milt Gee.

Q: My a student has a conflict(s) during the camp -- is it okay for them to miss part of the camp?

A: We encourage students to be focused on the Mandarins Leadership Camp activities. The curriculum is designed to be cumulative learning, so missing a section may reduce the learning effectiveness.

Q: How can parents help?

A: For the Mandarins Leadership Camp, we are seeking a limited number of parent volunteers. You will mainly help to prepare and serve meals during the camp. We are offering up to $25 per day for your service. Credit will be provided at the end of the camp.

Q: How do I enroll in the Mandarins Leadership Camp?

A: Register online here.

We look forward to seeing you at the Leadership Camp in July!