Add Sound Reinforcement

In its 2017 show titled "Resurgence," the Arcadia (California) High School Apache Marching Band used electronic sound design including amplification of soloists to create a unique aesthetic for its program. 

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  1446 Hits
1446 Hits

Bring a Sense of Joy into Elementary Music Classes

What do the following people have in common: Condoleeza Rice, former U.S. Secretary of State; Jerry Gay, an engineer who helped build the Hubble telescope; Alan Greenspan, former Federal Reserve Chairman; Richard Carranza, chancellor of the New York City Public Schools; and Steven Spielberg, renowned American filmmaker?  

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  990 Hits
990 Hits

Chamber Ensembles Help Develop Student Leaders

Several students sit in a practice room, their chairs arranged in a small arc with their music sitting on stands among them. While they lack the physical presence of a band director, they take initiative and guide themselves through rehearsal. 

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  921 Hits
921 Hits

Clarinetist Julie DeRoche Molds Music into Art

In the early 1980s, Julie DeRoche — who had recently received her degree in clarinet performance from Northwestern University — was juggling four jobs to make ends meet as she worked toward a fulltime career in music.

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  1568 Hits
1568 Hits

Clarinetist Julie DeRoche’s Keys to Teaching

In the blog post, Clarinetist Julie DeRoche Molds Music into Art, we outlined how DeRoche, professor and chair for the Department of Music Performance at DePaul University School of Music in Chicago, utilizes her extensive background in the music industry and teaching to help take her students to the next level of musicianship. 

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  1518 Hits
1518 Hits

Festival Etiquette

Performing at a festival is so much more than "performing the music." You should have high expectations for appearance and demeanor for performers as well as the audience. Here are some tips for your next formal performance.

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  1024 Hits
1024 Hits

3 Tips to Start a Mariachi Program

In the blog post, Case Study: Celebrating Mariachi in Iowa, high school band director Ruben Newell and middle school director Patti Bekkerus from Denison (Iowa) Community Schools shared how they started a successful mariachi program. In addition to research, patience and understanding, they offer these three tips.

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  1176 Hits
1176 Hits

Technology Tools for the Middle School Classroom

Many technology tools exist to ease your workload and move your music program beyond surviving to thriving. To ensure success, select resources that align with your goals, improve your efficiency and create new, meaningful opportunities to extend and deepen your students' learning experience. 

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  2367 Hits
2367 Hits

How to Choose an Amplifier for Your Electric String Instrument

Perhaps you are a violinist, violist, cellist or bassist considering the world of electric strings. After deciding to "plug in," your next question is probably: "Plug in to what?"

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  855 Hits
855 Hits

Add These 3 Exercises to Your Percussion Practice Sessions

As a percussionist, there are three things that we should always work on — reading, rolls and ear/listening. I know it is naive to believe that these are the only things to work on, but if you can continue to improve in these areas, you will be more prepared for the future. 

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  1740 Hits
1740 Hits

5 Tips to Build a Band Program from Scratch

In the blog post, Case Study: Building a Band Program from Scratch, we learned how Daniel Berard built successful concert and marching bands at Fossil Ridge (Colorado) High School. Here is how he did it.

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  1467 Hits
1467 Hits

8 Tips for Sight-Reading Success

The key to sight-reading success? Consistent daily practice, according to Dr. Charles R. Jackson, Jr., part-time assistant professor of music at Kennesaw (Georgia) State University, and Michael Burritt, professor of percussion and chair of the woodwinds, brass and percussion department at Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. 

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  1383 Hits
1383 Hits

Lessons Learned from Past, Present and Future Festivals

As our thoughts turn to preparing for upcoming festival performances, we must remember that this is all about students attaining full facility of the skills required to become independent music-makers within the framework of the ensemble.

To borrow from "A Christmas Carol," Charles Dickens' famous holiday tale, let's focus on festivals past, present and future.

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  866 Hits
866 Hits

3 Teaching Tips from the Boston Brass

In the blog post, Boston Brass' Quest to Educate Young Musicians, the members of the Boston Brass shared that education is essential to their mission. Here are some tips that the Boston Brass members like to impart to music directors during their many clinics.

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  1249 Hits
1249 Hits

Boston Brass' Quest to Educate Young Musicians

As you might have guessed, the Boston Brass is a brass quintet originally formed in Boston. What you might not have known is that more than performing with a unique blend of broad repertoire and boisterous fun, the group's first goal is to help educate as many young musicians as possible.

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  939 Hits
939 Hits

Electric Strings: The Power of Plugging In

Many years ago I was presenting a workshop entitled "The Power of Strings: Plugging In!" at a statewide music educators conference. The participants were all music teachers who had never played electric string instruments but were either planning to purchase some for their schools, were simply curious … or, in one case, outright skeptical.

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  950 Hits
950 Hits

DonorsChoose Helps Provide Quality Music Education

In my more than 30 years working in music education, I have observed a great deal of change. However, one constant is the overwhelming impact that music teachers have on the overall success of their students.

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  816 Hits
816 Hits

Craft a Proposal for New Instruments

In much the same way that a sports team needs skill players to perform specific tasks, quality school bands and orchestras need a given ratio of instrumentalists to carry out their defined functions in the ensemble. In both cases, the excellent condition of the component parts is key to putting together a winning team.

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  1211 Hits
1211 Hits

The Do’s and Don’ts of a Successful Concert

Few opportunities in education foster accountability through true and authentic presentation of student work in real time better than a well-planned and executed concert performance. It is an outstanding way to showcase your music program and provide a genuinely enjoyable cultural experience for your community.

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  2856 Hits
2856 Hits

Jeff Coffin: Professor Rock Star

Jeff Coffin remembers listening to AM radio in the car as a child and being attracted to the emotional component of music. In fifth grade, he chose to play the saxophone in the school band program, or rather he believes that the saxophone chose him.

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  1633 Hits
1633 Hits

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