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DECEMBER 2010 $5.00

Benjamin Zander

The Irrefutable Power of Music Report:

50 Directors Who Make a Difference From the Trenches:

Dear Santa


Contents

December 2010

Features 10

FROM THE TRENCHES: DEAR SANTA Bob Morrison presents his annual wish list for influential figures in music education.

14

PERFORMANCE: ENSEMBLE SOUND Dr. Arthur Chodoroff of Temple University elaborates on four simple steps directors can take to improve their groups’ overall performance and sound.

18

UPCLOSE: BENJAMIN ZANDER In this recent conversation with SBO, Benjamin Zander, author, speaker, composer, performer, educator and conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and the New England Conservatory Youth Orchestra, sheds light on all that is going right with classical music today.

28

REPORT: 50 DIRECTORS WHO MAKE A DIFFERENCE In this 13th annual report, SBO celebrates 50 educators – one from each state – who are making a difference in their schools, communities, and the world of music education at large.

62

TECHNOLOGY: TECH CONVENTIONS John Kuzmich highlights several upcoming conventions that can be of great use to tech-savvy music educators.

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28 Columns 4 6 44

Perspective Headlines New Products

45 46 48

Playing Tip Classifieds Ad Index

Cover photo by Koren Reyes, www.korenreyes.com.

SB&O School Band and Orchestra® (ISSN 1098-3694) is published monthly by Symphony Publishing, LLC, 21 Highland Circle, Suite 1, Needham, MA 02494 (781) 453-9310, publisher of Musical Merchandise Review, Choral Director, Music Parents America and JAZZed. All titles are federally registered trademarks and/or trademarks of Symphony Publishing, LLC. Subscription Rates: one year $24; two years $40. Rates outside U.S.A. available upon request. Single issues $5 each. February Resource Guide $15. Periodical-Rate Postage Paid at Boston, MA and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER/ SUBSCRIBERS: Send address change to School Band and Orchestra, P.O. Box 8548, Lowell, MA 01853. No portion of this issue may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. The publishers of this magazine do not accept responsibility for statements made by their advertisers in business competition. Copyright © 2010 by Symphony Publishing, LLC, all rights reserved. Printed in USA.

2 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010


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Perspective

A Maestro’s Lessons on Music and Life

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ttending a concert of the Boston Philharmonic without taking in the pre-concert lecture by maestro Benjamin Zander would be like going to a five-star restaurant and not having the chef’s signature appetizer. Zander’s effusive personality and encyclopedic knowledge of the orchestra literature brings the music and its composer alive to all members of an audience, regardless of their individual backgrounds or existing levels of knowledge. He is especially known for his brilliant and sometimes controversial interpretations of Mahler, Bruckner, and Stravinsky, some of which have been made available as recordings on the Telarc label. Zander is truly a renaissance man, as he has extended his reach far beyond music. Some of his current and recent activities include: three keynote addresses at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland; motivational speeches to Fortune 500 companies; the co-author – with his wife – of the successful book, The Art of Possibility: Transforming Professional and Personal Life; artistic director of the Walnut Hill School in Massachusetts; and conductor of the New England Conservatory Youth Symphony and professional orchestras around the world. His recording of Bruckner’s 5th Symphony with the Philharmonia Orchestra has been nominated “Zander is truly for a Grammy Award. Zander seems to have an inner desire to educate and provide a a renaissance greater understanding of classical music in order to bring it to life for man, as he those who attend his concerts. He states in his exclusive interview SBO, referring to the people who listen to his pre-concert talk, has extended with “You know that the audience is listening in a way that they otherwise his reach far might not. That makes it very exciting for the players, because they beyond music.” then know that they’re engaged in a two-way, participatory process in which both sides are contributing.” In the business world, Benjamin’s motivational speaking has linked the orchestral world with “how it translates effortlessly in to the business world, bringing a fresh perspective to leadership, creativity, coaching and teamwork viewed from his own unique insight into the harmonization of many elements into one whole,” according to the Speakers Associates Web site. It is not a difficult leap to consider the possibilities of how to translate the conductor’s role in the orchestra to that of a CEO, who also has to coax the highest level of performance out of his or her employees, encourage creativity, and inspire the individual units of the corporation to work together as a whole to create something that is greater than the sum of its parts. There is no doubt that any educator, musician, business person, or administrator can gain some piece of “actionable” knowledge from this charismatic leader, so read on…

Rick Kessel rkessel@symphonypublishing.com

®

December 2010 Volume 13, Number 12

GROUP PUBLISHER Sidney L. Davis sdavis@symphonypublishing.com PUBLISHER Richard E. Kessel rkessel@symphonypublishing.com Editorial Staff

EXECUTIVE EDITOR Christian Wissmuller

cwissmuller@symphonypublishing.com

EDITOR Eliahu Sussman esussman@symphonypublishing.com ASSOCIATE EDITOR Denyce Neilson dneilson@symphonypublishing.com Art Staff

PRODUCTION MANAGER Laurie Guptill

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GRAPHIC DESIGNER Andrew P. Ross aross@symphonypublishing.com GRAPHIC DESIGNER Laurie Chesna lchesna@symphonypublishing.com Advertising Staff

ADVERTISING MANAGER Iris Fox

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CLASSIFIED & DISPLAY SALES Maureen Johan mjohan@symphonypublishing.com

SALES & MARKETING MANAGER Jason LaChapelle jlachapelle@symphonypublishing.com Business Staff

CIRCULATION MANAGER Melanie A. Prescott mprescott@symphonypublishing.com

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT Popi Galileos pgalileos@symphonypublishing.com Symphony Publishing, LLC

CHAIRMAN Xen Zapis PRESIDENT Lee Zapis lzapis@symphonypublishing.com CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER Rich Bongorno rbongorno@symphonypublishing.com Corporate Headquarters 26202 Detroit Road, Suite 300 Westlake, Ohio 44145 (440) 871-1300 www.symphonypublishing.com Publishing, Sales, & Editorial Office 21 Highland Circle, Suite 1 Needham, MA 02494 (781) 453-9310 FAX (781) 453-9389 1-800-964-5150

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4 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010


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HeadLines Vater Debuts New Web Site Vater has redesigned their Web site to make it is easier to navigate and accessible via any mobile device. Features include Vater artist videos, video and print lessons, new product features and reviews, and more. There are also links in the drumstick product sections that link to similar stick models, making it easy for players who may be looking for a stick that’s like a particular model, but that is longer, shorter, thicker, or different tip. With many more features to be added soon, visitors can also subscribe to the Vater news feed, share each page on their social networks, search dealers, and download and request the Vater catalog. Every page on the site is now able to be translated into any language. To visit the new site, go to www.vater.com.

Online Survey Results Will your program s winter concert feature secular music, non-secular music, or a mix of both? We will perform mostly non-secular music

21%

We will do a mix of secular and some non-secular music

64%

We will do exclusively secular music

15%

NAMM Foundation Grants Now Available

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he NAMM Foundation has announced the availability of grants from its Wanna Play Fund for instruments, awarded to schools that are expanding or reinstating music education programs as part of their core curriculum and that employ quality music teachers. Interested schools must meet the following criteria to apply for the grants: Public schools serving low-income students, percentage of free and reduced lunch data required; community organizations servicing lowincome students and students with special needs, community demographic information required; schools and community programs that have made a commitment to hiring and retaining high-quality music teachers and providing standards-based, sequential learning in music. Schools must provide verifiable Employer Identification Number (EIN) and/or tax-exempt documentation. Online grant applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Applicants will be notified within 30 days of submission whether or not a grant will be awarded. Interested applicants must complete the online grant application. To complete an application, visit www.nammfoundation.org.

A Tribute to John Philip Sousa

O

n November 6, “The President’s Own” paid homage to its 17th Director, John Philip Sousa, with a graveside ceremony and wreath-laying on the 156th anniversary of his birth. The ceremony took place at Congressional Cemetery located at 1801 E Street, SE, in Washington, D.C. Conducted by assistant director Captain Michelle A. Rakers, this musical tribute included Sousa’s “The Stars and Stripes Forever” and “Semper Fidelis,” as well as remarks by Capt. Rakers regarding Sousa’s life and influence on the Marine Band. The annual ceremony was free and open to the public.

6 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

Visit www.sbomagazine.com and let your voice be heard in the current online poll – results to be published in the next issue of SBO.

YouTube Symphony Orchestra 2011

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ast year, musicians were invited to audition for the world’s firstever collaborative online orchestra. Thousands of amateur and professional musicians from 73 countries submitted videos to YouTube. The public voted and in April, 2009, 96 artists made history when YouTube Symphony Orchestra debuted at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Next year will mark the YouTube Symphony Orchestra’s return, and once again, musicians from around the world were invited to play their part, around the world. There were two separate ways to participate: Submit a video audition for the YouTube Symphony Orchestra 2011, who will perform in March, 2011 at the Sydney Opera House in Sydney, Australia under the direction of world-renowned conductor Michael Tilson Thomas; or submit a solo improvisation to a work composed by young American composer Mason Bates, to be considered for inclusion in the final performances in Sydney. The online audition period for the YouTube Symphony Orchestra 2011 ended on November 28, 2010.


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An expert panel drawn from leading orchestras around the world will narrow entries down to the semifinalists in both audition categories. The YouTube community will then be invited to vote online from December 10, 2010 through December 17, 2010. Musicians who are selected from this semifinalist group will be announced on YouTube on January 11, 2011. For official rules of entry and FAQ, visit the YouTube Symphony Orchestra channel at www.youtube.com/symphony.

VH1 Gala Supports Struggling School Music Programs

O

n November 8, VH1 Save The Music Foundationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Gala 2010 was held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. The annual event celebrates the power of music

Julie Andrews

and supports the restoration of public school-music programs. Hosted by Glee star and Broadway veteran Kristin Chenoweth Cheyenne Jackson, the evening featured tributes to Julie Andrews, The ASCAP Foundation, singer and long-time arts advocate John Legend, and multiple-Grammy Award winner John Mayer. Broadway, television and film star Kristin Chenoweth was among the performers. Singer Jason Mraz announced a $100,000 donation, which will benefit both the ASCAP Foundation and the VH1 Save The Music Foundation. Mraz is partnering with LG Mobile Phones to make the contribution. To find out more, visit www.vh1savethemusic.com.

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he Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard and Harvard Law Schoolâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Journal of Sports and Entertainment Law (â&#x20AC;&#x153;JSELâ&#x20AC;?) seek policy proposals suggesting changes in existing intellectual property laws relating to the creation, production, distribution, performance, or other use of musical works. Up to four authors will be invited to present at Rethink Music, and up to two of the papers will be considered for publication. Submissions must be received by January 24, 2011. For more information, visit www.berklee.edu.

Do you have something to say about an article youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve read in SBO magazine? Share your thoughts by e-mailing editor Eliahu Sussman at esussman@symphonypublishing.com!


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SBOFrom the Trenches: Dear Santa

The 2010 Music Ed

Holiday Wish List BY BOB MORRISON

Dear Santa, Here we are at the end of the year, which means one thing: present time! Once again, I ask that you indulge me by foregoing any gifts for me (such as that membership to the Hair Club for Men!) and instead consider the following gifts for the many more deserving and needy. Here is my list of those who have been either naughty or nice â&#x20AC;&#x201C; in the world of music education â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with an appropriate gift suggested for each!

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To Secretary of Education Duncan: New Words. Yes, I know you said that the federal government has no real influence over education at the local level. But then you went out and provided buckets of cash to states that agreed to “voluntarily” raise the caps on charter schools and increase teacher accountability based on student achievement. If you really support arts education, why not do the same thing? Instead of saying, “We have no influence,” how about a bucket of cash incentives for states which “voluntarily” make the arts a requirement for every student? Now that we know you are willing to use cash as a tool available for your other priorities, what does this say about your support for the arts? If you are not going to put your money where your mouth is, then quit talking about how much you support the arts. Talk is cheap. Put your money where you say your priorities are or stop saying the arts are a priority. Simple.

no words to offend? What makes one combination of notes offensive and another combination not? Is the next step the harmony police? Move to the back of the class! To STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) Proponents: A vowel! Specifically… an “A” for the arts. I know, I asked you to give this to them two years ago. Honestly, I do not think they ever opened

the package. The proponents of STEM still feel they have exclusive province over creativity. I know, it’s crazy, but it’s still true. To President Obama: A Calendar. How did President Obama spend the first “arts education week” this past September? By announcing a STEM initiative. You read it correctly. With all the hype around arts education week, National Arts Education

To the Texas Legislature: A day off! The passage and implementation of a middle school arts requirement has led to a significant increase in middle school instrumental music students. Reports from Texas this fall have highlighted waiting lists of students to get into programs and music stores running out of instruments to rent. To All Other States Legislative Bodies: A Legislative copy machine. This is so each state may copy what Texas has done and bring the middle school arts requirement to every state in the nation! To the Supreme Court: Some logic. The court upheld a ruling supporting a New Jersey school district’s ban on holiday music deemed to be religious – even if the music has no words! So, you believe performing instrumental versions of music deemed to be religious during the holidays is unconstitutional. Really? Is it just me or have we taken this whole thing a little too far. How can a song be offensive if there are School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 11


Week, you go off and schedule a big event for STEM. Is anybody paying attention over there? A new calendar I am sure will do the trick. We wouldn’t want to you to schedule another one of these during Music In Our Schools Month, would we? To Charter School Advocates: Arts Classroom and Programs. The research documenting the presence of an arts program in charter schools is beginning to mount and the findings are not good. Most Charter Schools do not include a comprehensive arts program. A few do – mostly in arts centered charter schools. The majority of charter schools have no arts. In an environment where there is this great movement to build more charter schools, there is a compelling need to demonstrate to charter school leaders how to include the arts in their schools.

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To 2012 Presidential Candidates: A video compilation of the 2008 campaign! Why would I want the presidential candidates to look at this? Well, 2008 was the first time in our history where we had a majority of the presidential candidates speaking eloquently about music and arts education and the need to help support the arts in schools. Without a doubt the highest visibility of our cause ever. We can only hope future candidates, who will begin announcing plans to run as soon as we enter the New Year, will be equally outspoken for our cause. The Avon High School Marching Band: A new music wing! Let’s face it; you are going to need more space to hold all your national titles. Winning Grand Nationals once is a great accomplishment. Two times in a row is an incredible achievement. Three times in a row is a feat of which legends are made. Congratulations to

Jay Webb, his staff, and the members of the Avon Marching Band for an incredible string of successful seasons! Sir Ken Robinson, Daniel Pink and David Pogue: A nationwide tour! Their opening session at the Creativity World Forum was fantastic. Perfect messages, from engaging messengers, tying together technology, business, education and music and arts education in a very compelling way. The more these three are talking to big crowds of decision makers and business leaders, the better it will be for the rest of us. For Heaven: A new music room! This year saw the loss of many colleagues who have shaped our discipline: legendary music advocate and industry executive Karl Bruhn; University of Massachusetts Minuteman Marching Band director


George Parks (who was also the greatest drum major to ever live); and the legendary Florida A and M University Band leader William Foster all took their place in that big band room in the sky. And to our readers, who bring the wonderful gift of music to students across this nation everyday: may you have everything you may ever want and a very happy, healthy, and prosperous new year!

Robert B. Morrison is the founder of Quadrant Arts Education Research, an arts education research and intelligence organization. Before this, Mr. Morrison was the founder of Music for All, one of the nationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s largest and most influential music education organizations where he remains chairman emeritus. Mr. Morrison helped develop and then served as the CEO of the VH1 Save The Music Foundation, where he took a small promotional idea and created a major national brand donating more than $25 million of musical instruments to restore more than 1,200 music programs. Previously, Mr. Morrison was a senior executive for NAMM (the International Music Products Association), serving as executive director of the American Music Conference, where he worked with the late Michael Kamen and Richard Dreyfuss to create the Mr. Hollandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Opus Foundation. He may be reached directly at bobm@artsedresearch.org. School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 13


SBOPerformance: Ensemble Sound

Four Ways To Make Your Band or Orchestra Sound Better ...and improve your festival ratings along the way BY ARTHUR D. CHODOROFF

F

or many years, at the conclusion of the spring festival season, I have thought that I should write an article about

1. Study the score carefully and observe the markings.

It always disappoints me to see an ensemble not perform as well as it the performances that I have heard. The impetus for this should simply because the conductor has not followed what is written in the is the fact that while many groups bring outstanding per- score. Frankly, when things like ferformances to the festivals that I adjudicate, others frequently re- matas, accelerandos, and ritardandos are totally ignored, the fault lies with ceive lower ratings for reasons that are often relatively easy to the conductor, not the students. Students will perform as they are taught. improve. While they have rehearsed, learned the music, and pre- Metronome and tempo markings are also often a similar problem. While pared diligently for the event, their ratings fall short. This might we know that these are not absolute, playing a piece at a speed that signifihappen even though they have played their pieces somewhat ac- cantly deviates from what is indicated is again the fault of the conductor. curately. So, for those directors who are unhappy with festival Some aspects of musical interpretation are more personal, while others are more scores of their ensembles, here, in that proverbial nutshell, are clearly defined. For example, if a new section of a piece is marked “faster” or four ways to help those groups sound better. “slower,” the composer is indicating that it needs to be different from what preceded it. How much faster or slower will be more of a personal decision if there is no new metronome marking. But, if a conductor simply makes no change in tempo in the new section, that is incorrect. An adjudicator might opine that more should be made of an accelerando or ritardando. That can always be subject to discussion. But if there is no change at all, it is incorrect. Similarly, the length of a fermata is a personal decision. But, if the conductor simply beats time through Conduct the music, not itthe Conduct onlyofthat forpattern. the written duration the note which is in the music – no more and no less. Therewith is much more to music thanagain, the that no cessation of the pulse, delineation of the meter. Time-beating usually results in over-conducting. is incorrect. As an adjudicator,Even I may not lovely gestures, if not called for in the music, should not be present theofconductagree with some orinall one’s personal ing. Look for techniques, clinics, or instructionalmusical materials to help you But get out of same interpretation. at the the pattern box. Applying the language of Rudolftime, Laban may be helpful. it would not be fair for me to lower

Tip #1 -

14 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010


a score if that performance is still a valid interpretation of what is written in the score.

2. Teach the musical style as well as the notes. Style is often an area that does not receive enough attention. For example, the title of a piece frequently gives important information about how it should be played. If the title includes words like march, dance, or song, then the composer is providing important stylistic information. Knowing what type of march or what type of dance it is will provide additional information about the style that needs to be achieved. Similarly, if the title or the composer’s notes indicate that a piece is programmatic, try to bring out the parts of the piece that represent those ideas. If the piece is a transcription or adaptation of a well-known work, be sure that your group has had a chance to hear a recording of it in its full original version. Even though it will be different from the arrangement that the students are performing, there is no more efficient and effective way for them to learn about the idiomatic aspects of music than to listen. Listening goes to the very core of what we do as musicians. Yet, it often plays one of the smallest roles in the way that we teach instrumental music. Emphasize the musical styles in your teaching and conducting, and stress to your students the importance of communicating these musical thoughts to the listener. The end result will be a performance that is not only more engaging for the performer and listener, but also one in which the students are better able to enjoy and personalize their music-making.

3 Choose appropriate music for your group and for festival performance. I have always found the selection of a program for any of my groups to be extremely challenging. It often takes me quite a bit of time to decide on pieces that fit the players, have musical merit, can be learned in the time available, and will balance with the other pieces on the program. Selecting pieces for a festival can be even more difficult. The bottom line

is that any time a group performs, we want the students to sound their best. I have never been able to understand why conductors program pieces that simply don’t sound good. There can be many reasons why a piece doesn’t present the group in the best manner possible. It may just be too advanced. I appreciate the thought that is sometimes expressed that “at least they had a chance to try it.” I would let them try it in the rehearsal room and bring something else to the stage. Why not let students show off their finest playing instead of struggling with something that is beyond their abilities?

and assign the parts yourself so that all parts are covered and students have opportunities on the various instruments.

4. Listen to your group. In order to help achieve the goal of having your bands and orchestras sound good, an important thing to do is to step away from the podium and listen. Try to listen as if you are an outsider and this is the first time that you are hearing this group. Remember to put this activity on your calendar so that you do it far enough in advance of the performance to allow for corrective measures. Be your own judge. Do you

“Style is often an area that does not receive enough attention.” On the opposite side of the spectrum, playing a piece that is far too easy for the ensemble – no matter how well it is played – will also usually be reflected in a lowered score. I knew a college football coach who said that to him a good schedule for a team would have some games that are sure wins, some that would be a good game but probable wins, and some that would be a stretch, but winnable. A similar view can be taken of programming. Every piece doesn’t have to be easy. But, depending on the level of your players, a concert that stretches a group too far on each piece may also be problematic. Strive for a balanced program. Other times the piece doesn’t fit the ensemble. If your numbers are low for a certain instrument or those players are weak, why program a piece that has critical parts for that section? If you have players who are not going on the trip to the festival and their parts are not covered in some way, how can a judge be expected to give a good score for something that he or she doesn’t even hear? And while we’re on the subject of parts, don’t forget the percussionists. All too often I see a percussion section with a number of players sitting and not playing anything while parts for the smaller instruments (such as triangle and tambourine—relatively inexpensive instruments to obtain) go unheard. Carefully study the percussion parts in the score

really hear the dynamics? Do you hear good ensemble? Do you hear the soloists? Do you hear wrong notes? Are the clarinets having trouble with the passage that goes over the break? Do you hear good tone quality? Do you hear good phrasing? What about the style? Listen objectively to everything, take notes, and don’t make excuses. Then go back on the podium and teach what your listening to the ensemble has indicated still needs to be taught. While you’re at it, make a recording and then play it back for the students. Let them be their own adjudicators. You might find that they are the ones who are most critical. Discerning listeners will become more astute performers. Remember that if something doesn’t sound good in rehearsal, it won’t suddenly sound good under the stress of performance. Listening to the group should also include looking at the physical seating arrangement. All too often, seating plans, especially for younger groups, do not work as well in practice as they do on paper. The seating charts that are found in books and the ones that we remember from the advanced groups in which we have performed might not allow for the best ensemble tone quality and balance with younger groups and with ones having less than optimum instrumentation. Let your ears and common sense be your guide to seating. If you have a lot of one inSchool Band and Orchestra, December 2010 15


strument type and only one or two of another, seat them so that they have the best chance of being heard. Don’t worry if it’s not traditional. I often tell classes about the time I went to do a clinic with a high school wind ensemble and saw a seating arrangement unlike any I had seen before. The instrumentation was balanced quite well except for a large number of flutes. So, instead of leaving the flutes in their traditional place up front and having that

wall of flute sound being prominent, the conductor started with a few of the flutes up front and then proceeded to arrange the rest further back into the group. The other instruments remained in a more traditional arrangement. While this flute seating looked odd, it worked. It was an excellent example of a seating plan designed by the teacher to enable that group to easily achieve a balanced tone. Many music teachers will arrive at this point in this article and realize that

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much, if not most, of what is being discussed here is not new to them. Whether for a school concert or a festival, there are no special secrets that will suddenly improve the performance of your musical groups. What is often said, but very often forgotten, is that we, as conductors – and more importantly as teachers – must go beyond the teaching of notes. Most students, especially at the high school level, are able to read and learn the notes and rhythms. They understand the dynamics and the tempo markings. That is their part. While we need to be sure that they are performing their parts correctly, our part also includes the conception of the ensemble and perception of a work. We are the only ones with the full score and therefore able to make comprehensive decisions about every musical aspect of the piece. We are the ones who select the pieces and determine their styles. We are the only ones who are in front of the ensemble and therefore able to hear the composite sound from a vantage point closer to that of the listeners. With more careful attention to these four areas, your groups will sound better whenever they perform – and that’s the best rating of all.

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Arthur D. Chodoroff is professor of Instrumental Music, director of Bands, and area coordinator for Woodwinds and Brass in the Boyer College of Music and Dance at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pa. Currently in his 42nd year as a music educator, he is conductor of the Wind Symphony, with which he has recordings released under the Toshiba-EMI and Albany labels. In addition, he teaches courses in undergraduate and graduate instrumental conducting, woodwinds methods, and has conducted concerts with the Temple Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, and chamber groups.


UpClose: Benjamin Zander

The

Irrefutable Power of Music

By Eliahu Sussman

A

nyone who thinks that classical music is in trouble in these modern times

clearly hasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t met Benjamin Zander. In fact, reports the longtime conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and New England Conservatory Youth Orchestra, classical music is positively flourishing, with unprecedented numbers of young people around the world engaged in music at an incredibly high level.

18 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010


nobody, I’ve ever found who does not respond to classical music.”

Photo by Steve J. Sherman.

“I’ve discovered that there is nobody, literally


In a recent conversation with SBO, Benjamin Zander describes how his formative musical influences impressed upon him the irrefutable power of music, a notion he, in turn, has impressed upon countless others. School Band & Orchestra: Let’s talk about your own musical background for a moment. What was it about music that first captivated you? Ben Zander: Certainly the most powerful influence on me was my father. He was not a professional musician, but he was a very passionate amateur musician. He used to come home from work and sit down at the piano and play. I remember being very, very small, looking at him, and he looked so ecstatic when he played the piano that I must’ve said some equivalent to, “Whatever he’s having, I want that!” That spurred my interest in music, and I started playing the piano when I was five or so, and

then started studying the cello when I was eight. That was a struggle, because there was big competition with soccer, which is the great game in England that every child grows up playing. But I did focus on music, and even wrote compositions when I was young. There’s actually a funny story attached to that, which is that every child in England who studies an instrument gets involved with a music festival in their village. We had an arts festival in my village, Buckinghamshire, and my mother put my compositions into the compositions section. When the adjudicator, who came down from London, saw them, he said, “These compositions are so bad that they can’t even be considered for competition, and

Photo by Sisi Burn.

As classical music embodies both astonishing refinement and raw emotion, so does Zander. He speaks with zeal and eloquence, whether on such illustrious stages as the annual TED conference (his speech there has been seen by over 3 million viewers on the Internet), at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland (where he was the keynote speaker), or over the phone, in a chat with the editor of School Band & Orchestra magazine. Ever the communicator, music is the metaphor through which Zander funnels his strategies for leadership and success, which he elaborates on during corporate and a wide range of other speaking engagements. He credits such work with enabling the funding of his many musical pursuits, ranging from youth symphony tours to his highly acclaimed series of Mahler recordings. Zander has also become renowned for presenting lectures prior to his ensembles’ performances, speaking of the context of the music that will be performed, presenting its deeper meaning in a way that is designed to make what is often exceptionally complex music truly accessible to even the “lay” listener.

20 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010


I would recommend that this young man be discouraged from composing ever again!” My mother, who didn’t really know what to think of this, was looking for a second opinion, so she sent them to Benjamin Britten. He

that made me realized that this was the path to follow. So cello was the direction I went at first. I started out on a career as a cellist and went quite far with that. But I couldn’t develop calluses on

“The life of teaching and contribution that I saw in others when I was a child has left a big mark on me.” called up four days later and assured my mother that the compositions were perfectly fine – I was, after all, only nine years old at the time – and that if the family wanted to spend the summer in Suffolk, where he lived, he would be happy to keep an eye on my development. So for three summers, we went, and I wouldn’t say I studied with Benjamin Britten because that would be too strong a word, but I certainly spent a good deal of time with him and was influenced by him. He listened to my compositions and we kept up a wonderful relationship through the end of his life. SBO: Do you remember a point during your youth when a light bulb flicked on and you realized that music would be a central part of your life moving forward? BZ: I was about 12 when I got into the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, and that was the point at which I, again, saw people so intensely involved, and the experience with the conductor, who was Walter Susskind, a great conductor who also worked with the St. Louis Symphony, was incredible. I remember looking up from the last page of a piece we were playing and he had tears streaming down his face; it was an amazing thing. At that moment, I thought to myself, “This has got to be the life for me!” It was partly that experience of playing in the youth orchestra and it was partly seeing that passion and commitment on the face of the conductor

my fingers, so I had a lot of physical problems playing the cello, and I realized that I would have to find another path. I also knew that I wanted to be a teacher. I was already a teacher, actually, at 15, 16, and 17. I was in Italy studying with Gaspar Cassadó and he would have me teach other students. I was at it all the time so I knew I could do that – and how did I get to be a cello student in Florence at age 15? Well, that’s another story altogether! [laughs] SBO: Sounds like a rather atypical youth experience! BZ: Right, I spent five years in [continental] Europe as an apprentice, in that kind of old-style manner of study. When I was about 16, and I’d been in Florence for about a year, and I was practicing all day every day and I wasn’t in school, I remember thinking, “There’s got to be a school someday where children like me can go!” And that’s the basis of the Walnut Hill School here in Boston, which I am now the artistic director of. It’s a school for highly motivated young people who want to be musicians, where they get a musical education along with their academic education, which they also get at a very high level. Much later, when I was already quite established as a cello teacher and chamber music teacher, I auditioned to be the cello/chamber music coach at a summer school. The woman who interviewed me asked, after she’d already hired me, whether I knew anyone who could conduct the orchestra. I said, “Oh, I’d love to do that!” And School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 21


Benjamin Zander At a glance: Born: March 9, 1931, Buckinghamshire, England Currently resides: Massachusetts, USA On the Web: www.benjaminzander.com Current positions held: Boston Philharmonic Orchestra: Conductor, 1979-present New England Conservatory Youth Orchestra: Conductor, 1972-present Walnut Hill School for the Arts, Natick, Mass.: Artistic director

she asked, “Are you very experienced?” And I said, “Oh very!” [laughs] At that point, I hadn’t conducted a note, but I knew I was very experienced because I’d been coaching chamber music and that’s all conducting is – chamber music coaching on a bigger stage. All of these things emerged gradually for me, and among the big influences on me, I will always remember that Cassadó taught me for five years and never charged me a penny for the

22 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

lessons he gave me over that time. And I have never charged a student for lessons since then. In principle, I don’t charge for lessons. I don’t do that much teaching these days because I’m so busy conducting and speaking and all of these other things. But those experiences influence one. The life of teaching and contribution that I saw in others when I was a child has left a big mark on me. What happens to one as a child is very important.

Now I have a wide range of activities: the youth orchestra, the conservatory, the Walnut Hill School, where I go every week to give the famous master class on Monday afternoons, I’m constantly working with young people and that’s a very enlivening and wonderful thing to be doing! SBO: What’s your impression of how music education is faring in the public schools in this country? BZ: It’s a complicated answer because you can’t make a blanket statement. The New England Conservatory has an absolutely overflowing abundance of music for children. It’s just unbelievable – on Saturdays, there are 11 orchestras, and I conduct the top group. There are so many children playing that we literally don’t have room on the stage for them! The other day a boy played Elgar Cello Concerto absolutely beautifully, and he’s sitting in the last chair of 17 cellos! Overall, there are more people playing at a higher level than there


SBO: You mentioned that your group will be playing Mahler and, in fact, you’ve spent a great deal of time working with Mahler’s compositions. What is it about Mahler that speaks to you? BZ: Mahler not only speaks to me, he speaks to everybody. He’s become the most popular composer of the day, and the reason for that is that he’s become an utterly modern figure. He’s wrestling with all of the issues that concern modern man: disorientation, high passion, faith, despair, incredible joy, energy, intimate relationships – just the entire gamut of human emotions. That’s why I think young people take to it so extraordinarily well. We did Mahler’s Tenth last year, which is the hardest and most elusive of the symphonies – we did the Adagio – and then this year we’ll be playing the

Photo by Peter Schweitzer.

ever have been in the history of the world. Right now it is a golden era. It’s simply unbelievable how many players there are. Here, the emphasis is mostly on strings, piano and winds, and for some reason, the brass program in Boston isn’t comparable to what’s going in other parts of the country, where marching bands are more prevalent. In the public schools, I don’t know this firsthand, but I’ve heard that there have been tremendous cuts to music education in many parts of the country. At the same time, in Texas, music is flourishing! It’s absolutely amazing! 25,000 teachers came to the all-state festival, and the orchestra was just fantastic. I think it depends where you’re looking. We’re also at the beginning of a new era for orchestral music with the el Sistema program, which is just starting up in this country. This year, the [New England Conservatory] youth orchestra is going to Prague, Vienna, and we are playing Mahler’s Ninth Symphony. Can you imagine playing that with a high school orchestra? And they’re simply amazing. This is off the charts. First of all, high school students never play Mahler’s Ninth Symphony, and then we’re going to these hallowed halls to play this great work, along the Beethoven’s Fourth Piano Concerto, with George Li, a wonderful young pianist.

“Music is not something at the periphery of life; it’s absolutely at the center of life.” Ninth. The students respond to every aspect of that musical voice, and voices, what I call emotional counterpoint. There are so many voices, each with their own statement coming together in his music. It’s like a great novel, and it’s very much like modern life; people respond to those things immensely. In the Ninth, he’s dealing with the end of life and it’s amazing. The young-

est member of the orchestra is 11, but even he seems to get inside it and play it with tremendous feeling. There’s a wonderful book that just came out called “Why Mahler?” by Norman Lebrecht, and it’s a 300-page answer to your question. What is it that draws people to it so incredibly? I’m in the process of recording each one of his pieces with Telarc, and each

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one will come with a full length CD in which I explain the music. It’s amazing what’s happened in these recordings because ordinary people, who have no relationship to music and no particular training as musicians, are suddenly finding themselves drawn to it and excited by it. I met a man recently who did something totally unrelated to music – I think he was a banker or something – and I gave him a copy of the

Fifth. He says now that he listens to it all the time, he’s listening to it constantly, and that’s a wonderful thing. I have copy of a Bruckner Symphony – and there’s nothing so esoteric as a Bruckner symphony – but this one has been selling extremely well because it comes with an explanation disc that brings it alive and explains what the music is all about, what was going through the composers mind, how the music works, how to listen to it, and

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the whole texture and context of the music. It is really a fantastic development. SBO: That actually brings up an interesting topic I wanted to touch on. You’re known for giving a brief lecture before the concerts you conduct – BZ: Not so brief! I talk for 45 minutes. I started doing this because I realized that the average listener who isn’t trained or deeply immersed in music – the people who sit at home listening to the music and poring over the program notes, it’s not for them – might be drawn to the music but doesn’t know about it and can’t easily follow it. So what happens is that since they’ve got nothing to think about, they fall asleep or they check out. But if you give them things to think about, and points of reference, it makes all the difference. I remember once I offered five dollars to any child, anyone under the age of 14, who could hear the cymbal crash in Dvorak’s New World Symphony. Well, I had six kids coming up afterwards to claim their five dollars, and one of them said, “I would have listened anyway,” but the whole point of that is there’s only one cymbal played in that symphony, and it comes in the last movement. So I had these kids sitting there, riveted, listening, waiting for their five dollars. That’s the secret, you’ve got to give them something to listen for me. The point isn’t about the money, but if you give them sign posts all along the way, the main themes and how they develop, and how the trombones come in during the second movement, and how the tuba only plays 14 notes in the whole piece, you get people listening. The success of the pre-concert talk is predicated on how many people will come. We had 700 people at the last one. That means that when you’re playing the actual concert, you know that the audience is listening in a way that they otherwise might not. That makes it very exciting for the players, because they then know that they’re engaged in a two-way, participatory process in which both sides are contributing.


BZ: The question for the talks is how to get them into the room, and nobody knows all the answers to that. I know that we just gave four concerts with the Boston Philharmonic, and all four were completely sold out. The discovery series, which is our first series, we have a captive audience because I do the talk immediately before the concert starts, without warning. I’ll explain the first piece, then we’ll play that piece, and then I’ll explain the second piece, and then we’ll play the second piece, and so on. That way, we’re sure that everyone in the hall is getting all of it. And this is not kids’ stuff; I don’t speak down to them. I’ll give you an example: at the beginning of Leonore [Overture] no. 3, there’s a rather dull passage in which there’s a descending scale. Anybody coming in to music for the first time would think, “When is this song going to get going?” Because it sounds very dull, there’s nothing happening. But when I mention that those are the steps going down into the dungeon in which Leonore’s husband, Floristan, is being kept as a political prisoner, they suddenly realize that that moment in the music is electrifying and they listen with a different kind of interest. They hear the steps going down into the dungeon, not just the notes on a scale. Once I’ve got them in the hall, I have no worrying. I’ve traveled the world talking to people, and I use classical music as my medium for teaching leadership. SBO: What has music taught you, or what have you learned from music, that has enabled you to be a successful speaker, to engage people, from corporations or other entities, who don’t have a vested interest in music? BZ: I talk to all kinds of people, not just corporations. I recently gave a talk at a maximum security prison in Pennsylvania to an audience of 150 serious criminals, who, by the end of

it, were singing Beethoven’s Ninth in planation – you have got to teach German. You cannot imagine the powthem what it’s all about it or give er of that; it was simply overwhelmthem some purpose. That even goes ing. The corporate people pay – and for when people are singing happy they pay well – so that I can afford to birthday. It’s not just any old happy take my youth orchestra to Austria and birthday, it’s that particular person Holland; these things don’t happen on and what that person is going to be their own. Those engagements enable and how old that person is going me to support the Mahler recordings to be the for the rest of their lives, and so on and so forth – I’m like the and you raise the stakes higher and Robinhood of classical music! higher and higher. And in the end, But the thing that is important to you can sing Beethoven in German, realize is that music is irresistible. Mueven if you’re dealing with hardened sic is like water; you can’t stop it. If criminals who are covered in tattoos water comes towards you, what can with their crew cuts – every one of you do? You swim or drown. Music whom came up to me afterwards and is the same thing; it has that power hugged me. Literally hugged me. and it’s irresistible. Once I get people I was just in Dubai, and 50 whiteinto the room, and I let the experience robed gentlemen, sheiks of one kind or of singing happy birthday or singing another, came up to me after the talk the Beethoven Ninth, or hearing the and hugged me. There was a German Chopin Prelude, there’s no one in the fellow there who told me, “I never room who can resist it. There’s no one thought I would live to see a day when who says, “I’m not going to sing happy 50 Arabs sheiks were hugging a Jew!” birthday.” So then the question is how Well, what did that? The music. It’s are they singing it? Are they singing it very moving and it’s very powerful. in a dull and conventional way or are The music alone won’t do it; but with they knocking the roof off? What I do the explanations and with the connecis use music as a metaphor for breaktions with breakthrough-possibility ing through barriers, which otherwise thinking, that is a very, very powerful are keeping people in the lock of aspackage. sumptions that they’re making about life and leadership. So I’m not actually giving talks about music, I’m giving talks about leadership. I’ve discovered that there is nobody, literally nobody, I’ve ever found who does not respond to classical music. There is no such thing as tone deafness. What I’ve found is that after speaking to probably millions of people by now – certainly hundreds and hundreds of thousands – there isn’t anybody who doesn’t respond. If that’s the case, then we’ve got a very powerful force here. You can’t say that about soccer. There are lots of people that don’t respond to soccer. But there is nobody that doesn’t respond to music, provided you set it up right. And the setting it up right means the right environment and then the ex- Ben with his partner, Rosemund Stone Zander

Photo by Mark Alcarez.

SBO: Is there something that can be extrapolated from this to be used to engage students in what might not be the most accessible genre of music?

School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 25


I’m conducting Bruckner Eighth with the Boston Philharmonic, and at a recent rehearsal – there were no guests there, just the players, and they don’t know the music – they were just overwhelmed the power of it, by the beauty, by the grandeur, by the way it shifts the molecules in your body – this is not normal stuff; there’s just not anything normal about it. And from that extreme to the prisoners in the prison or the kids in third grade, they all will respond, and that’s the exciting thing about this. Music is not something at the periphery of life; it’s absolutely at the center of life. Of course Plato is the one who said that first. He said that there are only three essentials for the training of the young person: mathematics, athletics, and music. Each has a different function. Mathematics is to train logic and the mind, athletics to train the body, and music to train the soul. I wish that we could get back to that more rigorously and more fully, because in some cultures, that is understood. One of those, of course, is Venezuela, where they’ve discovered that not only is this a wonderful thing to do, but it’s an escape from poverty and discouragement and crime and drugs and despair. I hope the world is paying attention, and I think they are. What’s going on in China, for instance, is absolutely extraordinary: 30 million people playing the piano, 10 million people playing the violin, this is an era of just burgeoning classical music. So when people say to me that classical music is dying, I say, “You ain’t seen nothing yet!” We’re just at the beginning of a vast world where people realize that classical music is as essential as food. People do recognize it about pop music; everyone listens to pop music in one form or another. If they aren’t listening to pop music, they’re listening to Bruckner! But I went to a Lady Gaga concert this summer, and it was amazing! People go absolutely crazy over this stuff. And I went to a Sting concert – incidentally, Sting is a wonderful musician and he and I hit it off fantastically well because we are both essentially coming at 26 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

the same thing from different ends. Lady Gaga, I’m not quite so sure about where she’s coming from. But it is very striking to see 18,000 people screaming and singing along. Music is just phenomenal. Pop music is great up to the limits it can bring us, and the best pop music is wonderful, but you can’t compare it to Mozart or a Beethoven string quartet. SBO: What’s the key for music educators, particularly those working in public schools, to light this fire, which clearly burns so brightly in you, in the eyes of their students? BZ: Don’t lose the enthusiasm. The enthusiasm is the beginning, the middle, and the end. For me to see my father after a long day at the office, when he would come home and sit down at the piano, pure love and joy would pour out of his body into his hands and into his music. It’s the enthusiasm, his shining eyes. I always say that the secret is the shining eyes. If the eyes aren’t shining, don’t blame the children. Just ask, ‘Who am I being that these eyes aren’t shining?’” That’s always the test. If the eyes aren’t shining, it ain’t happening. The focus is to generate enthusiasm, in the profound sense. In fact, the word enthusiasm is based on the word “theo,” which means “God.” I actually don’t believe in God, but that doesn’t matter, I believe in possibility, and being full of enthusiasm means being full of possibility. Giving that away is the sacred task of all teachers – generating it and giving it away. That is the stream on which it flows. You can’t just do it with knowledge or with discipline or with drilling, and certainly not with anger. You can be demanding, but only if you’re flowing a fast river of enthusiasm. So long as the enthusiasm is running, you can be as demanding as you want! The discipline, the anger, and the blaming, without that passion and love, is devastating for kids. If your reward is the shining eyes of your pupils, their parents, and the community, then you’re a great teacher.


SBOReport

Directors

Who Make a Difference

n compiling this 13th annual 50 Directors Who Make a Difference report, SBO received an unprecedented number of recommendations from teachers, administrators, their colleagues and students from every corner of the country. With so many outstanding nominations to choose from, the resulting accumulation of educators â&#x20AC;&#x201C; as usual, one per state for each state in the U.S. â&#x20AC;&#x201C; represents an extraordinary range of experience, specialization, and character. From small town elementary general music teachers to the directors of nationally acclaimed powerhouse high school ensembles, these following educators are bonded by a love of music and the perseverance to endow this passion unto their following generations. Please permit the standard disclaimer that the educators featured here, while deserving of recognition, are simply representative of the countless outstanding people who wear the mantle of arts education and are the torchbearers of music in our schools.

ALABAMA Steve Williams

Athens High School Athens Total years teaching: 23 Years at current school: 11 Students in program: 120 Proudest moment as an educator: The proudest moments are when my students realize that they have achieved a goal or mastered a skill that required them to reach deep inside and push themselves beyond what they think is impossible Making a difference in studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives: I endeavor to support the growth of the total person. While I strive daily to promote student love and passion for 28

School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

music, I also focus on balanced growth in character and work ethic. Independent thinkers are powerful individuals, who can defend their knowledge and point of view with a background balanced by art and character. Key to a successful career in music ed: In my opinion, the key to a successful career in music education is to be organized. Be prepared not just for the expected, but for the unexpected. Always have a back up plan. Invest in yourself, and let each student know that they matter.

ALASKA

Lorrie Heagy Glacier Valley Elementary School Juneau Total years teaching: 13 Years at current school: 8

Students in instrumental music program: 105 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment as an educator occurred three years ago when Glacier Valley received the Kennedy Center Creative Ticket National School of Distinction Award in 2007. The Creative Ticket award recognizes schools that have done an outstanding job of making the arts an essential part of the education of their students. Only four other schools in the United States were selected, and Glacier Valley is the first school in Alaska ever to be honored. Thirty-four 4th and 5th-grade students traveled to Washington, D.C. and performed Tides and


the Tempest, a play written by Alaskan playwright David Hunsaker which integrated all of the arts and intertwined Shakespeare’s The Tempest with the traditional Tlingit story of Naatsilanei’s creation of Keet Shagoon, the killer whale, representing the culture of the Tlingit people. Our cast was 38 percent Alaska Native, 12 percent Asian, 38 percent Caucasian, and 12 percent Pacific Islander. We were honored to represent the diversity of our school, the Juneau community, and the state of Alaska. Making a difference in students’ lives: “Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.” This quote from Socrates recognizes how critical it is for educators to provide varied and enriched experiences for their students. Exposure to a new idea or subject may be the “flame” or motivation needed for that child to become an enthusiastic learner. The arts play an essential role in educating the whole child and can be the spark that ignites student motivation. Music helps form friendships through teamwork and shared goals, builds discipline through practice and delayed gratification and engages both mind and body as part of the learning process. All children deserve the emotional and creative outlet that music provides, as well as glimpses of what life can be like when approached with an aesthetic eye. Through this rich artistic process, students discover who they can become and how they can make their unique mark on this world. Key to a successful career in music ed: Remember the 3 C’s: Collaboration, Community Partnerships, and Connections. Music is universal. A music program should never exist as an island in a school, but instead extend beyond the music room and school walls. Whenever possible, seek out ways to collaborate with other teachers to integrate and connect music to classroom learning. Partner with community organizations

to help make musical opportunities accessible to all students, regardless of their financial means. Finally, use technology to share what you do. It can be a very powerful advocacy and fundraising tool! For example, our blog (juneaumusicmatters.blogspot. com/) documents weekly the JAMM kindergarten violin program and just received over 10,000 hits from locations all over the country and almost every continent. Through creative technology, you can make an impact both locally and globally.

ARIZONA

Thomas G. Wiegert Chino Valley High School & Heritage Middle School Chino Valley Total years teaching: 30 Years at current school: 1.5 Students in program: 110 Proudest moment as an educator: Over a career of 30 years, there have been many great moments and many wonderful memories, but the one that means the most is the one we as teachers see often; that gleam in the eye of a student when he or she recognizes they have accomplished something special. It might be something small; someone played their first note, or it could be something large; being accepted into a select group. It doesn’t matter. It is that moment when the student is grinning from ear to ear with self pride and self satisfaction that means the most. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope I can provide enough opportunities for each student to be successful, hopefully building some selfconfidence and self-reliance along the way. I hope I can give students enough positive influences that they are able to stay away from some of the negative influences of this world. I hope I can broaden the minds of students, sharing with students a taste of other places,

of other cultures and of other experiences through the diverse pallette of music. Key to a successful career in music ed: I concentrate on two things: knowing that music education is not a nine-tofive job, it is a lifestyle, and finding ways of keeping alive the same excitement and joy you once had in your own musical experiences.

ARKANSAS Jon Shultz

Lake Hamilton High School Pearcy Total years teaching: 11 Years at current school: 9 Students in program: 580 Proudest moment as an educator: I do not have a single proudest moment as an educator. To me my proudest moments come when I see my students succeed at something and realize all of their hard work paid off, whether it is at a marching contest, playing contest, auditions, or even just in rehearsal. When students can accomplish something that they never thought was possible, that is what makes me proud. Making a difference in students’ lives: I want to give my students a set of life skills that they can use throughout their entire lives. To teach them that through diligence and tenacity they can accomplish anything they desire. I want to teach them to always complete every task with excellence to the best of their ability. I also want to teach my students to find things in their lives and be passionate about them. Key to a successful career in music ed: To make everything you do be in the students’ best interest. Every decision you make needs to benefit the kids. Always remember why you do this job: to teach people to love music. School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 29


CALIFORNIA Norman Dea

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Acalanes High School Lafayette Total years teaching: 28 Years at current school: 3 Students in program: 190 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment as an educator occur when I see students succeed and then to watch them go help other students succeed as well. I’ve always noticed the positive power of music in the classroom. Music is an academic elective, and the great majority of students take these classes out of personal choice, not as a graduation requirement. Music education is very important and special to me, but not for the accolades that comes with awards, recognition, or reputation (although they are nice to have), but for that unmistakable look of pride and intense satisfaction on the faces of my students knowing that they played extremely well and to their fullest potential. A student once wrote in his UC college essay what it felt like to truly do your best in performance, “As the final chord was released, our eyes focused back on the baton. I sat back in my chair and my eyes, and the eyes of those around me, glistened with tears of astonishment. The passion felt in this single moment was like no other. Our entire musical experience had come together to produce 30 minutes of unforgettable music.” I never forgot those powerful words. Making a difference in students’ lives: Music is unique in the respect that we have the opportunity to see the students for four years in perhaps two classes a day. We are put in close contact and are engaged in extensive performance activities outside of school hours. That puts us in a very uncommon situation compared to the typical classroom teacher. From that perspective, there are days when


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Who Make a Difference music isn’t the primary goal. There are days that I stress topics such as individual responsibility, integrity, respect, developing a collaborative work ethic, and living with honor and dignity. After 27 years as an educator, it is clearer to me today my role in public education. I guess what I am trying to say is this: my personal mission as an educator is to teach young people to the very best of my ability, and to have them leave my classroom as thoughtful, empathic, responsible, and enlightened young adults. Key to a successful career in music ed: I think the key to a successful career in music education is multifaceted. I would describe my own teaching style as nurturing, friendly, flexible, understanding, and intense at times. The students know that I have very

32 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

high expectations of them, but I try to be flexible in terms of the dayto-day class plans. When a primary class plan is not working well, I usually have several backup plans ready to be implemented. The end result is that there is learning and a positive outcome at the conclusion of the majority of classes. This is not to say that every day is a wonderful day, but I believe that I know when to pull back when the day is not going as smoothly as was planned. I believe that my students appreciate this style of teaching. I’d like to think that I am approachable, and my office door is always open to my students who need to talk with me about the issue of the day, or just to come in to visit. My primary master teacher during my student teaching days was Bob Greenwood of Tamalpais High

School in Mill Valley. It was he who impressed upon me the values, methodologies, and teaching philosophies that I hold so high today. His mentoring of me during those early years had a profound effect on my career in music education.

COLORADO

Raleigh “Butch” Eversole Palmer Ridge High School Monument Total years teaching: 17 Years at current school: 3 Students in program: 120 Proudest moment as an educator: I’ve been fortunate to have had some really rewarding and musical performances. However, what has


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Who Make a Difference always meant the most to me are the instances when a student gives me a sincere, unsolicited “thank you.” It is that moment that I realize that I have connected with the student on musical, educational, and personal levels. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope that I am, first and foremost, a positive role model for my students. I want to model for my students a person who loves his job, loves being a musician, loves life, and always strives to do his best. I hope my students are able to experience the truly unique, indescribable, and life-changing feeling that comes from a successful musical performance. When they leave my program, I hope they continue to love music for a lifetime. Key to a successful career in music ed: If there is only one key for a successful career in music education, it’s love what you do. However, I think there are many other keys for success. I think music teachers must strive to be the best musicians we can be. We must have an insatiable desire to continue to learn as much as we can – and not just about music. We must remember that we are not alone, and to seek the advice, input, and help from public school and university music teachers. Last, but certainly not least, we must strive to make connections with students and parents. It is through these relationships that we can have the best opportunities for success as a music educator.

CONNECTICUT Todd A. Helming

Middle School of Plainville Plainville Total years teaching: 9 Years at current school: 9 Students in program: 300 Proudest moment as an educator: Being an educator can not be summed up in a single proudest moment, but instead is a series of proud mo34 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

ments strung together: Each time a student is able to accomplish something they never dreamed possible; Each time a student finds his or her voice in music; Each time a student realizes the beauty of the music language; Each time a student finds joy in their own success or overcomes a limitation... I am proud of each of my student’s accomplishments, and our journey of discovery is what continues to drive my passion to educate. Making a difference in students’ lives: Inspire, passion, and beauty are just a few of the words that describe music’s power. Instilling these qualities in students helps educate the whole student and creates students who are more thoughtful, kind, considerate, and successful. Music has a power to educate in ways other disciplines can not. Key to a successful career in music ed: Education is a conversation, a dialog. This give and take creates a bond between an ensemble and their conductor. As a director, listening creates trust, safety, and teamwork that paves the path for musical excellence. Always take the time to listen to your students respecting their individuality.

DELAWARE Brian Endlein

William Penn High School New Castle Total years teaching: 6 Years at current school: 6 Students in program: 130 Proudest moment as an educator: I think my proudest moment to date would be that moment when a student achieves something they didn’t think they were capable of. Watching them learn to believe in themselves, their abilities, and each other is simply amazing. Making a difference in students’ lives: I’ve always thought the job of a mu-

sic educator is so much more than just teaching music. Sometimes the lessons learned while teaching the music are just as important. I hope that my students learn the importance of hard work, commitment, discipline, and dedication, all while building the inter-personal skills they need to be successful outside of the classroom. Key to a successful career in music ed: I think there are many keys to a successful career in music education. Professional development, seeking out good music, and above all, a love for teaching are all major tenants of a successful career. Be sure to surround yourself with talented and genuinely good people that care about students as much as you do. Whether they are marching band instructors, other teachers from your school, administrators, booster parents, or custodians these are the people you will always be able to count on. Never lose your inner child and remember that every morning you wake up you get to teach music to children. A million people elsewhere in this world might care less what you are doing, but you need to make teaching music one of the most important moments of your day.

FLORIDA P.L. Malcolm

Seminole High School Sanford Total years teaching: 18 Years at current school: 13 Students in program: 285 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moments are the small, quiet ones when a student comes into the office and says, “Thank you,” or, “I understand.” Making a difference in students’ lives: I just want to be a good role model to my students. I want them to strive to be good musicians, but I really want


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Who Make a Difference them to excel at being great people. Key to a successful career in music ed: Band directors need to help each other and accept help from each other. Be stubborn with high standards: quality programs play quality music. A leadership program is a great way to involve your students and listen to their ideas, as well as challenging them to accept responsibility. Dream big.

GEORGIA

Michael J. Walsh Alpharetta High School Alpharetta Total years teaching: 27 Years at current school: 7 Students in program: 198 Proudest moment as an educator: I have two that stand out: Performing all six movements of Grainger’s Lincolnshire Posy on stage at Carnegie

36 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

Hall at the National Concert Band Festival with my son on stage playing trombone and my wife and daughter in the audience, and the first halftime show this year when both my son Andrew and daughter Megan where on the field at the same time performing in our marching band. I am a proud teacher and dad. Making a difference in students’ lives: As music educators we’ve all seen involvement in a quality music program change students’ lives. My goal has always been to instill a love for music making in the hearts of my students. I do this through creating the best possible music-making environment. We know as educators that we are creating the next generation

of music “appreciators.” Personally, I invest a lot of time encouraging my students through audition preparations, rehearsals, and quality performances. I encourage students to keep playing into college and so they can enjoy music as a life-long hobby, or make a career out of it. 27 years ago I replaced my former high school band director at my first job out of college, at my old high school. I held that job for 14 years. Today a former student of mine from that school holds that same position – a threegeneration legacy. Key to a successful career in music ed: These days I feel fortunate to have a job in the music education industry. Now more than ever before, music educators must be willing and prepared to be flexible when it comes to what their teaching assignment is.


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Who Make a Difference School systems and administrations are looking for ways to save money and cut budgets; unfortunately music programs become easy targets. As a high school band director, I have taught music appreciation classes, music theory, percussion classes, and many guitar classes (yes, general music) over the years. After marching band is over, I run a jazz program before school each week. I keep our wind and percussion students involved with our string players through full symphony and feel very comfortable in front of a string ensemble. As teacher, we must be willing to get out of our teaching “comfort zone” if our desire is to attract students into our program. Some of my best marching band members have come from these other music classes, including orchestra, chorus,

and guitar. Like it or not, numbers do create job security in our field. Finally, we live in a data-driven society today. Document your music program’s growth from year to year. Document how many honor bands, all state, and youth ensembles your students audition into and perform with. Document how many students stay involved at the college level. Track their success and make it public. And by all means, celebrate their successes with them. After all, we are in this career for the students.

HAWAII Gregg Abe

Roosevelt High School Honolulu Total years teaching: 26 Years at current school: 25 Students in program: 235

Proudest moment as an educator: As an educator, the proudest moment you can have is when you see each and every one of your students succeed in any endeavor that they do. After spending four years with the students, you develop a close relationship with many of them. So, whenever you see that sparkle in their eyes after they know that they did something great, it makes everything worthwhile. Making a difference in students’ lives: Every year I tell the students as we prepare for a concert or competition that sometimes it’s not about the outcome but the journey you take as you prepare yourselves for that particular event. The hours of sacrifice and com-

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Who Make a Difference mitment and how they can use this to prepare themselves in everyday situations. When faced with a problem, face it head on and not run away from the problem. It’s not about how many trophies you bring back but the experiences you learn and how each and every one of the students worked together and individually to reach those specific goals. Key to a successful career in music ed: After 26 years, I’m still learning about patience and understanding. You have so many students coming from different backgrounds, and they are looking for that one teacher that who will understand what their needs are and you have to try your very best to provide that to them. Mind you, the students think that I am very strict and expect certain things from them, but I try to make that correlation of how everything you do now will have an effect on you later on in life.

IDAHO

Derek Bernier Rocky Mountain High School Meridian Total years teaching: 3 Years at current school: 3 Students in program: 149 Proudest moment as an educator: When we opened Rocky Mountain High School, we had a tiny band (18 winds) with less-than-perfect instrumentation. At every event or competition we attended for the first year, we were just lampooned by the adjudicators. I could tell it was a little demoralizing for the students to receive poor scores and harsh criticisms from the adjudicators time and time again. In our second year, we attended a local marching band competition and had a decent performance, but I’ll never forget the kids’ reaction at the awards ceremony. When the announcement for the first place award came up, by the time the “R” in “Rocky” finished 40 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

rolling off the announcer’s lips, my band jumped to their feet and I saw my drum majors, percussion and guard captains with a “Uh…what do we do now?” look on their face. The whole ride back to school that night, the kids were ecstatic, parents tearing up; everyone was in a state of euphoria. It really felt like we had grown so much as a group after just one year, and the exhilaration of being rewarded for all the hard work they had put in was appreciated much more after being in the cellar for so long. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope that I can teach students a little bit about life while I have them in music classrooms. As cool as it would be if every one of them ended up staying in music for life, I know it’s not going to happen. I just hope that, throughout their lives, they can look back and remember band for being a place where they learned about teamwork, responsibility, building each other up, and everything else we teach in our ensembles. Maybe some of those lessons might stick and help make them better people when they grow up – it worked for me with my high school band experience. Key to a successful career in music ed: It must take an unparalleled love for the students and the music. If you don’t enjoy being around the kids, your life will be miserable; if you don’t like being around the music, your life will be miserable. I love being able to teach so many of the kids and I really enjoy guiding them through the musical process; those two items are definitely the best part of teaching.

ILLINOIS Brian Logan

Wheeling High school Wheeling Total years teaching: 28 Years at current school: 19 Students in program: 135 Proudest moment as an educator: While directing bands at the Midwest International Clinic, Umbria Jazz

Festival, and the Bands of America National Concert Band Festival have been incredible experiences and honors, they are not the most exciting or memorable part of the job. There have been many years when an extremely talented senior class graduates only to have the next group of leaders begin where those graduates left off. It’s exhilarating to help nurture and develop freshman potential into upperclassmen excellence. Today many of these former students, and their parents, are some of my closest friends. Making a difference in students’ lives: Our students could be participating in hundreds of other activities rather than playing music, yet they choose to be with us. What an awesome and wonderful responsibility we have to expose these special young seekers of art to great literature, wonderful guest conductors, world class performance opportunities, professional private teachers, brilliant guest artists, and much more. We teach life, and music is our vehicle. The many lessons, laughs, and incredible artistic moments will hopefully be indelibly engraved in our students’ minds, hearts, and souls for the rest of their lives. Key to a successful career in music ed: There are many keys to being a successful music educator. Make the journey as important as the destination and enjoy the ride. If you work hard and prepare well, performances are a celebration of the work. Have high expectations for your students, as well as yourself. Be organized and keep growing as a musician and educator.

INDIANA

Lisa M. Sullivan Mohawk Trails Elementary School Carmel Total years teaching: 21 Years at current school: 21 Students in program: 558


Who Make a Difference Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moments are the times that I think about how many awesome students I have had the opportunity to make music with over 21 years! Many of them have continued to make music throughout their lives and are now grown adults. I am proud of who I am as a teacher and a person and feel blessed every day to continue to create musical experiences for me and my students. Making a difference in students’ lives: More than anything, I hope to help build students up, help them realize their potential, and help them be willing to take risks. Musically speaking, I want to help students become independent and think outside the box. Even

young students are capable of remarkable ideas and, given the opportunity, they can create some amazing music! Key to a successful career in music ed: First and foremost, you have to love what you do! You have to want to share the joy that comes from making music with others! When students see that you enjoy it, they too will strive to do their best and it can be a great experience for everyone. The other part of the successful equation is sharing and appreciating your colleagues and what they can bring to the table. We all have so much to share!

IOWA

Tim Hatcher Davenport Central High School Davenport Total years teaching: 5

Years at current school: 4 Students in program: 240 Proudest moment as an educator: I am proud to teach and conduct tremendously talented students, everyday. It is an honor to lead them in performance. Making a difference in students’ lives: My goal is to not only motivate students to be successful musicians, but to develop life-long skills, such as character, teamwork, and leadership. Key to a successful career in music ed: Although my career is still young, my mentors have told me to always strive for professional growth, to not be afraid of criticism, and to always teach with a smile.

KANSAS

Pamela Lawson

We make them. He plays them. You need them.

Scott Johnson, The Blue Devils

42 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

Challenger & Discovery Intermediate Schools Goddard Total years teaching: 19 Years at current school: 2 Students in program: 170 Proudest moment as an educator: When my brother recently said, “I have seen you work with kids from low-income backgrounds, affluent areas, kids with behavior challenges, and special needs students. And there is one thing that I know for certain – the results have always been the same.” Making a difference in students’ lives: To respond to life challenges positively. I teach my students that failure is just an opportunity to strengthen your resolve and failure is not an option until you stop trying. That is why I tell my students that the word “can’t” is not allowed in the classroom. But they can say, “I’ll try.” Key to a successful career in music ed: Design the learning environment so


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Who Make a Difference that every child looks forward to that special time of day when they will attend your class. It must be interesting and fun, so don’t forget the humor. There are constant trends and changes in education, so this means that the music teacher must be a life long learner to meet the demands of an ever changing society. Finally, realize that your class is a network of individuals and that all of them come from various backgrounds with a separate set of values. Get to know your students and respect who they are. Don’t forget that a strong supportive administration along with parental and community involvement will help your program thrive, even in the toughest economic times.

KENTUCKY Brian Froedge

North Hardin High School Radcliff Total years teaching: 18 Years at current school: 11 Students in program: 260 Proudest moment as an educator: I don’t know if I have a proudest moment. I love when students perform well. They are so focused and intense. When our kids make great music, it is a snapshot of them at their very best. I love sharing that experience with them. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope we give them opportunities to develop musicianship, scholarship, and citizenship at a very high level. Our

school has a large number of at-risk kids, as well, and I think we give them a kind of family support structure while they’re at school. Key to a successful career in music ed: If you’re not passionate about kids and music, you’re going to be miserable. You have to make a great deal of sacrifice to have a successful program. I think since I’ve had kids of my own, though, I’ve been able to find a balance between family and work, and that’s helped me keep things in perspective, so that I don’t have so many highs and lows.

LOUSIANA Patricia Roussel

East Ascension High School Gonzales Total years teaching: 31 Years at current school: 9

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Who Make a Difference Students in program: 150 Proudest moment as an educator: The first time one of my groups performed at the Meyerson Center in Dallas. It was a wonderful venue and a memorable performance. Making a difference in students’ lives: The band motto is “Successful bands do what unsuccessful bands don’t like to do.” I hope the students can make this motto fit in all aspects of their lives. I want them always to have the joy of music in their life. Key to a successful career in music ed: Being passionate about your profession keeps it enjoyable. I’ve always said that I get to teach the best students in the school. I love my students and the joy they bring to me everyday

MAINE

Steve Muise Mt. Blue High School Athens Total years teaching: 19 Years at current school: 18 Students in program: 106 Proudest moment as an educator: I’m proud that I now have batches of students that I teach for 10 consecutive years. I’m very proud that a member from the first batch is now a high school music educator. I’m also proud that our whole community knows the value of the arts in our region and in our schools. Making a difference in students’ lives: We strive for our students to be good citizens as well as musicians. I want our students to enjoy the whole process of making music, from the first notes through all of the concerts and beyond. Key to a successful career in music ed: The key to a successful music education career is to be patient and persistent. Each day will bring new challenges and rewards, but the rewards always outweigh the challenges. 46 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

MARYLAND Vicki Crum

Thurmont Middle School Thurmont Total years teaching: 30 Years at current school: 2 Students in program: 80 Proudest moment as an educator: There have been some exceptionally fine performances and exciting events over the years, but there isn’t any one single moment – it’s seeing the musical and personal growth of individuals and ensembles over time that I’ve had a part in. Making a difference in students’ lives: Hopefully their growing confidence and hard work from music will carry over to many other aspects of their lives. And hopefully they will become life-long music lovers and participants. Key to a successful career in music ed: Knowledge and hard, hard work are key. I also think it important to genuinely like and believe in your students; have a passion for music; know how to teach both technique and musicianship; keep playing and performing yourself; maintain a sense of humor.

MASSACHUSETTS Michael Mucci

Longmeadow High School Longmeadow Total years teaching: 33 Years at current school: 33 Students in program: 164 Proudest moment as an educator: There are many, and they all involve my students, past and present. However, I was extremely proud that I played a part in saving our elementary instrumental music program from being eliminated last year. Making a difference in students’ lives: I would hope that my students would

say that they learn about beauty, the role that enthusiasm plays in achievement, and that hard work pays off. Key to a successful career in music ed: Genuine love for students and the art of music – and a good sense of humor.

MICHIGAN Mark Greer

Mattawan Consolidated School Mattawan Total years teaching: 29 Years at current school: 15 Students in program: 460 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moments are whenever a student that I have had from 6th grade through 12th grade asks me for a recommendation for college. I am blown away at the fact that they would consider me and my opinion of them for such an important decision in their life. Making a difference in students’ lives: By encouraging them and insisting that they treat everyone with respect and create an environment in the classroom that makes it a “safe” inviting zone for all. Key to a successful career in music ed: Be consistent in the lives of your students. Put them first on your list when choosing music, extra rehearsals, trips, festivals and competitions. No one person is more important than the job of educating students.

MINNESOTA Andy Richter

Edina High School Edina Total years teaching: 10 Years at current school: 1 Students in program: 395 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment as an educator was last year. I had a student who had started composing a piece of mu-


sic, and I encouraged him to finish it and have the concert band sight-read it. He did such an outstanding job that I decided to let him rehearse it and conduct it on a concert. The local newspapers covered this story and the whole concert band rallied around the premiere of his piece. We ended up performing another piece of his on our last concert. He is now studying to be a music educator and composer. Making a difference in students’ lives: Music education aside, I feel it is also my job to reinforce the characteristics that I believe good human beings should have. I try to demonstrate compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience to my students. I also try to provide self-discovery, ownership, and leadership opportunities for my students. Key to a successful career in music ed: What is success? I’ll start by telling you what I believe it is not. It is not how many awards your ensembles have won, how many ensembles yours can beat, or what repertoire you have in your folders. No, I believe that Ralph Waldo Emerson said it best, “…To find the best in others; to give of one’s self; to leave the world a little better… to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sung with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived – this is to have succeeded.”

the field but in the community. Another year after, a bad situation arose with our indoor program. We lost two key members, but the kids pushed forward and placed third in the Percussion Independent A Class. Another year we were the smallest wind section at the MS State Championships, and we came in second overall out of 32 bands. I could talk about watching the students grow from very weak players and by the time they graduated they were first chair and in section leader positions. But I have to say it was when the drum major and flute principle chair Afaaf Shakir was named Star Student. With that she was allowed to name her Star Teacher. This goes to the teacher the student has most influenced them over the years. I immediately assumed she would select her favorite chemistry and physics teacher since she was heading towards a field in medicine. But when she came to me and told me she wanted to select me I was awash

with an emotion of shock and humility. She told me out of all the teachers she had had her four years I truly pushed her to become the person she was. I was the father she could come to when her own dad was out of town traveling, and most importantly, I made her feel she always had someone to talk to no matter how trivial the matter may be. She told me I always made her feel important and valued. Needless to say, I was floored. Let’s just say this former marine teared up. Making a difference in students’ lives: I truly hope to teach them more than dots on a page or finger positions. I want every band student that leaves our program to look back over the years in the program as one of growing as a person. I hope I help them understand what it means to not push for a score or leadership position, but to be their best every day. I try to show them how not everyone is going to be at the same level of musicianship or maturity and how to handle the frustrations that stem from them.

MISSISSIPPI Casey A. Caviness

Long Beach High School Long Beach Total years teaching: 34 Years at current school: 10 Students in program: 229 Proudest moment as an educator: Over the past ten years, I have some really great moments so it is hard to place one at the top. After Hurricane Katrina, the kids banded together to keep moving forward not only on

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School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 47


Who Make a Difference I (we) preach excellence at all times even if it is only 45 percent one day and 100 percent the next, give all that you have to give. Don’t shortchange yourself or other band members. We try to show them how by pushing in band will also help them push in the chemistry class or history class that is frustrating them. We all know that not everyone we work with is in it for the same reasons. We try to show the band kids that is also true in band, but we still need to come together and be our best together. We have a saying before we go on the field; I tell the kids that the staff and I don’t care where we place as long as we do it together. That will always be more important than a trophy. Anyone can go to a shop and have a trophy made but no one can bottle the feeling of knowing we all worked together to be our best. Quality over quantity always wins out in the end. Key to a successful career in music ed: When you get the answer to that you need to bottle it and market it. To me, it’s love your kids. Hug them as much as they need to be hugged. Give them the praise they need when they deserve it, and admonish them when they need

to be. In life you will succeed and fail at times and kids need to learn that now instead of later. I think that helps more to bringing every child to their potential. Another thing is not to let ego get in the way. It is okay not be the best in some area. If you don’t know an answer find a veteran director and ask for help. There is always someone out there that has been in a spot before that has the answers you may need answer. Too many times I have witnessed a director not sure of the answer but let pride get in the way, and it hurt the students.

MISSOURI C. Grant Maledy

Odessa Middle and High School Odessa Total years teaching: 5 Years at current school: 2 Students in program: 200 Proudest moment as an educator: Any time a parent tells me their student is really excited about band. It sounds trite, but it keeps me coming back for more. Making a difference in students’ lives:

I want students to develop a lifetime musical habit, to continue playing and enjoying music whichever direction they head in life. Key to a successful career in music ed: Balance. My first year I was so stressed I was diagnosed with hypertension and prescribed high blood pressure medication. Finding time to relax and engage in other activities is important for your sanity. I’ve seen too many great band directors put all of their time into their programs and burn themselves out. While teaching is my focus and occupies the vast majority of my time, the other hobbies and activities I (occasionally) engage in refresh me and help me remember that students have more on their plate than just band. It’s been my dream to do this job since the first time I opened my tenor saxophone case when I was twelve, but as my friend and mentor Craig Finger once told me, “It’s just band.” It’s the focus of my career and has been the driving force of the last 18 years of my life, but I keep myself engaged in my home and spiritual life so that I can be my best for my students.

MONTANA Steve Patton

Billings West High School Billings Total years teaching: 22 Years at current school: 10 Students in program: 160 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment came from a situation that helped me to realize what a difference being a teacher could make. I had two of the shyest students I had ever taught who played the trumpet and also were the guitar and bass players in our jazz ensemble. When I asked them questions they would never look at me and I could hardly hear their answers. They decided to form a jazz trio with a 48 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010


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Who Make a Difference friend of theirs who was a violinist and they went to work in a practice room for over a year. One day I was in the classroom rehearsing a very young Jazz II group and I looked up to see the three of them in the practice room laughing out loud and having a great time. I realized that music had made a difference in their lives and that, as their teacher, I had also. I looked back to the freshman in front of me and realized that this was their starting point, and that their potential was without boundaries. The members of the trio went to three different universities, are successful in their lives and continue to play music today. Making a difference in studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives: I hope that my students realize that they have the ability to do whatever they want. They should know what the process is to learn new things and, more importantly, be willing to try. Key to a successful career in music ed: Enjoy what you do! Some time near the beginning of my career, I came across a piece of paper with a quote by Charles Swindoll. I carried it back to my office

and taped it to the wall above my desk. I am in a different office today, but the same piece of paper is on the wall in front of me and I still take time to read it to keep my attitude in check. The note, titled â&#x20AC;&#x153;Attitude,â&#x20AC;? reads: â&#x20AC;&#x153;The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company... a church... a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past... we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10 percent what happens to me and 90 percent how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes.â&#x20AC;?

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NEBRASKA Del Whitman

Lincoln East High School & Lux Middle School Lincoln Total years teaching: 25 Years at current school: 25 Students in program: 190 Proudest moment as an educator: When I poked myself in the eye with the baton! I have the workerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s comp papers to prove it! Truly, the most rewarding moment was when we finished a laryngitis (silent) rehearsal, and the music had transcended technique and detail and literally emoted from the hearts of the students and they felt it! A few tears, a lot of emotion, and a memorable musical moment weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll always remember. Making a difference in studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives: The difference was clear when Shana, a beautiful young lady at heart who was homely in appearance, received her Senior Orchestra Certificate at our Finale Concert. She couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t afford a violin, her fingers were dirty and her fingernails chewed, her parent rarely came to concerts, and she was not super smart nor popular nor athletic nor on the speech team, the drama club, and so on. But she persevered to finish high school while loving to play her violin, learning to love Tchaikovsky, and being accepted by her orchestra classmates, and she received great applause on the last concert. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the difference! I hope to continue to be a part of that difference every year! Key to a successful career in music ed: Pray to God. Beyond that, people are priority number one! People are more important than performances, paperwork, popularity, technology, ratings, grades, assessment, curriculum, and everything else. Get behind the eyes of the kids. Love the kids. And pray!


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sure they always have a very positive outlook on the future. I know that you can come to this country with nothing â&#x20AC;&#x201C; no money, no advanced degrees, no language skills, but through hard work, you can achieve. I hope that my students are confident in their abilities, and whatever path they choose for the future, that they work hard and have a positive outlook. Key to a successful career in music ed: Well, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s important to love music and to love kids! Getting up early every morning to face something that you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t love makes you miserable, and thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just not what we need in this field. Once students see the joy in your music making, that is success. Of course, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been blessed to work for amazing administrators, and that certainly plays a role, but we need to make it our job to cultivate that relationship â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with the administration, our parents, and the entire school environment. When good things happen for our band, the whole school is excited!

Diane Koutsulis Green Valley High School Henderson Total years teaching: 32 Years at current school: 20 Students in program: 180 Proudest moment as an educator: Those moments happen often, and not always on stage. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m proud when I see that students understand a new concept. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m proud when I watch students help other students improve. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m proud when I see the students working hard in a performance. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not sure what event would make me prouder than seeing students learn. Making a difference in studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives: I was raised by Greek immigrants who taught me that you can achieve anything that you hope for in life with hard work and determination. Many of our students come from a variety of backgrounds, and Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not

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52 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

NEW HAMPSHIRE Gerry Bastien

Alvirne High School Hudson Total years teaching: 29 Years at current school: 15 Students in program: 160 Proudest moment as an educator: The proudest moment as a music educator came in June 2009. I was presented with the New Hampshire Excellence in Education Award. The New Hampshire Music Educators Association awarded me the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Outstanding Music Educatorâ&#x20AC;? of the year, which then led to being honored by the Department of Education. Making a difference in studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives: I hope to make a difference in studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives by being true to my passion and craft. Along with my students, we are creating a legacy for the Alvirne High School Band program. I instill in my students that they are not allowed to have a bowl of mediocrity for breakfast. Students should demand from their teachers a high level of instruction and commitment. In turn, I tell my students that I, too, will demand a high level of student inquiry and commitment. Teaching is my passion and for my students, school needs to be theirs! Key to a successful career in music ed: The key to a successful career in music education is simple. In our band program we have a motto: â&#x20AC;&#x153;You Choose to, Want to, and Love to.â&#x20AC;? Music is all that I have ever known and I have been fortunate to have had many experiences in the music field, both in and out of the classroom, that have influenced my teaching. I work hard and I play hard. I never get tired of learning or being inquisitive while having fun!


NEW JERSEY

NEW MEXICO

Ridgewood High School Ridgewood Total years teaching: 24 Years at current school: 23 Students in program: 200+ Proudest moment as an educator: I’ve had so many! When my students raised over $1,000 of their own accord and donated it to another high school whose marching band equipment had been destroyed in a highway accident. Watching one of my former drum majors direct the marching band at Syracuse University, my alma mater, where I too was a drum major. Having my student saxophone quartets selected to perform at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Young Musicians Concert. Having former students return to work on my staff. There are also thousands of musical moments along the way – in rehearsals, performances, et cetera. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope to be making a difference in students’ lives by helping them learn that music can be a part of their lives forever – that whatever they do in life for a career, and wherever in the world they travel, they are connected to musicians everywhere; that even after they’ve forgotten equations, formulas, dates and theories, they can always be musicians. Also, by showing them that the qualities of an excellent musician are the same as those of being a great human being – someone who listens, who is willing to be open, and who treats others with kindness, compassion, and empathy; someone who seeks balance, who values blend, and lives harmoniously with others. Key to a successful career in music ed: Teach the child, live the music, and remember to love both.

Eisenhower Middle School & La Cueva High School Albuquerque Total years teaching: 6 Years at current school: 6 Students in program: 711 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment was when our middle school symphonic band gave a world-class performance at the honors concert at our state convention in January of 2010. Seeing the joy in their faces as they left the stage after all they gave of themselves in preparation for the concert was one of the most fulfilling moments I have had in my life. Making a difference in students’ lives: My goals for our students when they leave our program are that they have a high sense of self worth, understand personal responsibility, have the desire to help everyone around them be suc-

Jeffrey G. Haas

cessful, lead through positive example and kindness, be musically independent, be intelligent connoisseurs of music, and continue to pursue performance opportunities throughout their lives. Key to a successful career in music ed: The keys to a successful career in music education are a willingness to work hard and a love for teaching kids, first and foremost, followed by a love for music.

John Converse

NEW YORK John Wevers

Walter G. O’Connell Copiague High School Copiague Total years teaching: 37 Years at current school: 27 Students in program: 110 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment was looking at the glow on the faces of my students as they marched down Broadway in the 2008 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. All I could think of was how that

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School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 53


Who Make a Difference day had given them a memory very few band kids would ever have. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope that I have taught them about more than just how to play their horns or to appreciate music. We talk about “life skills” that our members develop while being part of our band. Whether it’s being on time or being sensitive to others’ situations, we try to show our members that they are capable of great things. Time has shown me through returning alumni that we often succeed in these goals. Key to a successful career in music ed: I tell new teachers and those who want to enter into music education as a career that they need a love for music and a passion for kids.

NORTH CAROLINA Steve Sigmon

North Henderson High School Hendersonville Total years teaching: 5 Years at current school: 3 Students in program: 90 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment did not occur in the classroom, but at a recent LSU vs. UNC football game in Atlanta, Ga. The halftime performance of both bands included students that graduated under my direction, from a school that had had no band when I was hired. These students were sophomores when I recruited them back in to the band, despite their previous negative experiences in the course. They became part of an eight-member graduating class from the band, all of whom continued in music, six of whom received scholarship assistance for their musical ability, and one receiving the first “full” scholarship for music ever 54 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

awarded to a student from that high school. Making a difference in students’ lives: I have two main goals for every student involved in my program. I hope that each student learns how to be hard working, self-reliant, and accountable – attributes that today’s youth are often accused of lacking, but that they do possess as much as previous generations. I also hope that each student discovers the many life-enriching aspects of music. Superior performances and making the All-State band are certainly worthwhile goals that my students and I share, but in my opinion those achievements alone cannot make a lifelong impact or make a person happier or more at peace. I hope that my students learn to use music as a catalyst to a better life; whether that is as a career choice or it simply makes them better able to feel uplifted by a hymn at church. I hope music becomes a companion to these students that will enhance the good times, comfort them and be an avenue for emotional release in the bad times, and improve everything in between. Key to a successful career in music ed: Teaching music must make you excited to get out of bed in the morning. The usual teacher’s mantra of “too little money, no appreciation” may be true, but it won’t help our students or ourselves. We all chose education for different reasons, but music chose us. Focus on why you became a music educator in the first place, and work to pass that on to others while getting to enjoy your own passion for music on a daily basis.

NORTH DAKOTA Bevin Mitchell

Williston Middle School Williston Total years teaching: 7 Years at current school: 3 Students in program: 112 Proudest moment as an educator:

I don’t have just one. Every time a current or former student tells me that a difference has been made in their lives because of an experience in my band program makes me proud of the work I do. Making a difference in students’ lives: At the end of the day, it’s never about how many notes, rhythms, or articulations were played correctly. I realize the majority of my students are not going to grow up to be in the music profession. If I can help a student achieve a level of appreciation and respect for music while shaping lifelong character traits such as discipline, confidence, teamwork, and the such, then I’ve done my job. When all those aspects are working in balance, the technical elements of music performance are always evident. Key to a successful career in music ed: For me, it’s balance: the ability to balance all areas of your life in order to reach your expectations and maintain excellence in all areas of your life.

OHIO

David Smarelli Sycamore High School, Sycamore Junior High School & Edwin H. Greene School Cincinnati Total years teaching: 29 Years at current school: 22 Students in program: 237 Proudest moment as an educator: On a personal level, my proudest moment was being selected as the 2007 Public School Orchestra Teacher of the Year by the Ohio String Teachers’ Association. On a student level, it’s anytime I hear of a student continuing music after high school just for the love of it. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope to develop a lifelong love for


Who Make a Difference music and a desire for excellence in my students. Key to a successful career in music ed: You need to be passionate about your profession and want to share and develop that passion in others.

OKLAHOMA Dawn Thrailkill

Putnam City High School, Coronado Heights Elementary, Rollingwood Elementary Oklahoma City Total years teaching: 25 Years at current school: 5 Students in program: 128 Proudest moment as an educator: It’s difficult to single out one moment, but high on the list would be seeing the joy and pride on students’ faces after a concert or contest performance. They know they have played well, are filled with excitement and take ownership of the group’s success. Making a difference in students’ lives: It is my hope that through my teaching and example, students learn about individual and ensemble responsibility, leadership, time management, making good choices, teamwork, and have a lifelong appreciation for the hard work, effort, and beauty of mu-

56 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

sic. I also want them to know that I care about each of them as an individual and hope that through being a member of the orchestra, they strive to improve both personally and musically. Key to a successful career in music ed: Perseverance! I believe you have to enjoy the journey and the fundamental educational daily process that is the foundation of a successful performance.

OREGON Ben Brooks

Reynolds High School Troutdale, Oregon Total years teaching: 39 Years at current school: 34 Number of students: 300 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moments have been when I hear about or renew an acquaintance with a former student who has gone on to become a successful music educator. I am always so thrilled to see what my students have accomplished as they pursue their musical dreams and goals. Many of them have developed award-winning music programs, and I am confident that the next generation of music education is in excellent hands.

Making a difference in students’ lives: I know that only a small percentage of the students I teach will go on to become professional educators or musicians. I try to instill in each student the pride of hard work and discipline in achieving a musical goal. I also feel it is important for students to become good music appreciators through their experience of performing some of the finest music literature ever written. Key to a successful career in music ed: The key to a successful career in music education is discipline and persistence, as well as a love for kids and love of music. The first few years of teaching can be very difficult; but I strongly encourage new teachers to stick with it, because music education is a highly rewarding and personally satisfying career.

PENNSYLVANIA Richard Victor

State College Area High School State College Total years teaching: 36 Years at current school: 36 Students in program: 250 Proudest moment as an educator: It is easy to point out the memorable performance moments. I will always be proud of our four performances at the Essentially Ellington Jazz Competition, the five Montreux Jazz Festival appearances, and every one of our many music conference and adjudication concerts. However, the proudest moments are those when I get a thank you from a State High graduate for helping them learn things about themselves that contributed to their success in life. Making a difference in students’ lives: There is a poster in my office that was given to me by the class of 2002. It reads “Everything I need to know to succeed in life I learned in the State High Marching Band.” The poster lists


dozens of my favorite quotes about how to achieve excellence in every aspect of personal and professional development. I always hope that these words will impact students’ lives in a positive way. It is gratifying to hear stories from alumni that demonstrate the influence that these quotes have had on their lives. Key to a successful career in music ed: The key is to understand that success as music teacher is about students, not the personal achievements of the director or the accomplishments of the ensemble. When teachers place the development of the student above the development of the performing ensemble, then both will flourish.

music: how to play it, how to listen to it, how to understand it, and how to love it. I help my students to play from the heart, not just from the head. Key to a successful career in music ed: Patience. It takes years to achieve mastery because as teachers we never stop learning. I learn so much every day from my students. The performing arts are different from every other subject taught. It is becoming involved with yourself and your surroundings. It is pure emotion. I become very involved with my students and their lives. I believe that helps them feel safe in the environment that I provide, which allows them to express their emotions through their music.

RHODE ISLAND

SOUTH CAROLINA

Moses Brown School Providence Total years teaching: 21 Years at current school: 15 Students in program: 380 Proudest moment as an educator: My quick answer is that my proudest moment was when my Upper School Wind Ensemble performed on the stage of Lincoln Center. The longer and more profoundly felt answer, though, is when I sat with one of my students, a tenth grader who I’ve taught since she was in fourth grade. We were talking about her upcoming participation in Plymouth State University’s All New England Band Festival, and how well she is playing her clarinet. I thought back to when she was in my Beginning Wind Ensemble, and she would cry in class because she couldn’t make a sound come out of her clarinet. And now she is a poised and confident student musician who plays her clarinet beautifully. Making a difference in students’ lives: Simply put, by teaching my students

Northwest Middle School Travelers Rest Total years teaching: 6 Years at current school: 6 Students in program: 160

Stephen Toro

Robert V. Powell

Proudest moment as an educator: There is a moment before a major performance, that moment at which I step on the podium, and every pair of eyes in the band is trained on me. I can see the focus and passion of the students. That is magic! Making a difference in students’ lives: When students leave my school to go to high school, I always leave them with this thought: “I hope I taught you something about band, more about music, and even more about life.” I try to instill character, discipline, and musicianship on a daily basis and make as much of my instruction as possible applicable to any path they may one day choose. Key to a successful career in music ed: Love music. Love the students. Stay focused on what really matters every day. As band directors, minutiae can quickly take over. Work as hard as you can, for as long as you can, on

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Who Make a Difference the things that enable students to perform well and fall in love with making music.

SOUTH DAKOTA Jennifer K. Hawkinson

Washington High School Sioux Falls Total years teaching: 16 Years at current school: 9 Students in program: 180 Proudest moment as an educator: There are certainly a number of specific performances that stand out and I am always proudest of the students’ achievements. There are also memorable moments that happen in daily band life when students grasp a new concept or technique or have a really great rehearsal, and those are equally important. I am especially proud of those students who are pursuing degrees and careers in music education and sharing their experiences and passion with their students. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope that my students will learn to appreciate music as an art form and build greater personal technical and musical skill, but most of all I hope they find joy in the creation of music. There are a number of other life skills that I hope they will learn, as well: discipline, collaboration, setting and reaching goals, and making excellence a habit in their daily lives. I also hope that we build a sense of family within our program as students make friendships and memories that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives. Key to a successful career in music ed: Patience, persistence, and passion. Having longevity and success in music education requires a great deal of patience as you work through daily challenges. It also requires persistence as you work to improve students’ technical and musical skill and trusting that staying true to the 58 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

course will develop stronger musicians in time. Perhaps the most important is passion... for what you do, for those with whom you are doing it, and for sharing it with everyone you encounter! I truly believe in the transformative power of music in the lives of students and hope that I bring that excitement to everything that I do.

TENNESSEE David Aydelott

Franklin High School Franklin Total years teaching: 19 Years at current school: 4 Students in program: 190 Proudest moment as an educator: It’s not one moment for me, but all the little moments when the students are thinking and feeling as musicians. Making a difference in students’ lives: My aim is to create advocates of music. I treat band as a “big tent,” meaning that there are students with lots of different backgrounds and ability levels in band, but we all work together and use our particular skills to make the band program a positive experience for all. Students that are All-State caliber players help the band immensely, but so do the third clarinet players that have a great attitude every day. The one thing that should bind all those students together is the power of the band program to make music an important part of their daily lives, so that when they become adults they will support music education. Key to a successful career in music ed: Perspective. You have to be able to deal with the day-to-day issues of teaching, but you also have to zoom out and see the big picture. Are the students enjoying themselves in the band program? Does being in band enrich their lives? Will they help you recruit beginning band kids by being positive about band in their

neighborhoods? Is their band experience preparing them for their lives as adults? These are the kind of questions that really steer a band program, and having that perspective is important in order to have a successful career.

TEXAS

Jeremy Kondrat Plano Senior High School Plano Total years teaching: 13 Years at current school: 11 Students in program: 312 Proudest moment as an educator: I am most proud when I learn that my students are continuing their musical growth and passion for music beyond high school. I thrive on knowing that my students have a deeper comprehension of music and want to learn more and share great music with others. Perpetuating the art of creating great music is most definitely my proudest moment (every time it happens!). I am always proud to learn when our Plano Alumni are leading some of the finest collegiate bands in the nation, teaching others the craft of music making, or performing in professional symphony orchestras. The rewards of teaching music are endless. I love watching that student transform into a self-sufficient musician and independent human being. I thrive when a student achieves because he or she discovers success, causing an enormous ripple effect of desire for more learning. This is why education inspires our students to cure cancer and heart disease. The electricity and chemistry that binds musicians together during performance is beyond any trophy. There is no greater reward than watching vastly different students work together towards a common goal with patience and understanding. For me, I have been lucky enough to share some truly outstanding and


moving performances with my students, whether with the Plano Senior High School Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Jazz Ensemble, or Marching Band. I am always driven by the experience – the journey – that we share together in preparing music. I believe my proudest moments are when the music brings us all together. That is the power of music. Making a difference in students’ lives: First, I hope to be able to give my students something they didn’t have before entering my program. I hope to give them a much deeper meaning of music and life in some capacity. Each student takes and applies something different from their experience in the Plano Senior High School Band. I hope to give my students a combination of love, inspiration, motivation, sharing of knowledge, opportunity, clear and high expectations, human connection, planning, adaptation, honesty, assessment and accountability, and more love. I encourage our band students to imagine and discover the great humanitarians they will become. I believe that education has the greatest impact on humanity, as teachers mold, develop, and even dare students to make the world a better place. Teaching is what propels our planet; we would not have medical or technological advances, English teachers, or symphony orchestras without teachers. I teach life through the art of making music. I hope to teach my students selfworth, self-discipline, self-confidence, commitment, loyalty, integrity, and consistent work ethic. I try to develop trust, dedication, ownership, teamwork, and individual and group success. When students feel safe, have a sense of belonging, and feel successful through gaining knowledge, they are motivated. Our Plano Band Family is taught patience, perseverance, critical thinking, and concentration to the fullest capacity. I have developed a sequential curriculum for developing brain connectivity in the areas of rhythm,

tonality, melody, and harmony. These brain connections will forever be embedded and transfer for use in so many areas of life. Every student is different! I accept and encourage every child, and then adapt his or her learning style to meet his or her individual needs. Determining when to demand more or nurture more is an art in itself. I love and crave that vibe when all of those different personalities and backgrounds enter my band room. Then, music begins and strips each student of their differences. Music is one of the only elements in life that unites people of diversity. Most importantly, I want to give my students the positive experience of making music and belonging to a team or group. If I can accomplish this single goal, then they will crave this sort of experience with others throughout their lives and always be driven to create the best experience possible in whatever walk of life they may find themselves. Key to a successful career in music ed: Never stop learning! To constantly strive to become a better musician; to hear music and comprehend music more deeply every day, then share that knowledge with every student. To commit to people and believe in people! To never give up on students and always explore what drives a student or why they may be unmotivated.

To never stop learning more about how people think and function. There is no replacement for the encouragement a teacher can offer. Inspiration! Without inspiration the teacher and the student will never find optimal motivation. Inspiration is everything. I always search for the beauty in every moment, whether it be musical or personal. Concept! Always have a clear concept. If you can’t imagine the pitch, the rhythm, the articulation, or the musical phrase, you can’t teach it. The concept should always be of the highest standard. I personally, use the professional ensemble as a model for my students and myself. Have a plan and a system for everything! Simple and clear instruction are essential. There is no replacement for preparation (How can I achieve the concept I have imagined?) Be flexible when the plan doesn’t work, too! Balance! Music education can be an all-consuming career. It is essential to stay healthy mentally and physically to be the best teacher you can be. My family is always the most important part of my life. Making time for family, hobbies, exercise, and fun is an essential part of being the best educator possible. Lastly and most importantly, make sure your students know that you genuinely care for and love them.

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Who Make a Difference UTAH

Heath Wolf Farmington Junior High School Farmington Total years teaching: 17 Years at current school: 11 Students in program: 350 Proudest moment as an educator: While performances at state and national events are certainly rewarding, I would have to say my proudest moments happen in the privacy of our band room during a typical rehearsal. Nothing is more rewarding to me than the excitement generated when a group or individual has one of those “musical moments” where everything finally comes together and a piece becomes more than just notes on a page. Those moments cannot be described, only experienced. Making a difference in students’ lives: To be a successful musician you must be disciplined, dedicated, motivated, pay great attention to detail, and be a tireless worker. It is my hope that students’ who have gone through my program have learned these attributes and can apply them to whatever endeavor they choose to pursue. Key to a successful career in music ed: We all must remain students. We must continue to learn and grow no matter what age we are or how long we have been in the classroom. We must continue to practice and perform on our professional instruments. We must attend workshops, conventions, master-classes, concerts, and recitals. We must set the example for our students that music is a life long pursuit and that the journey never ends.

VERMONT Jim Derby

Mount Anthony Union Middle School Bennington Total years teaching: 37 Years at current school: 21 Students in program: 130 60 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

Proudest moment as an educator: I’m proudest when my students’ eyes light up and big grins shine forth telling me that they got it and are proud of their accomplishments. It never gets old having kids succeed making music. Making a difference in students’ lives: Making music in the band is a collaborative effort. The skills learned in bandland will serve my students for the rest of their lives. No one sits on the bench in band. Key to a successful career in music ed: Persistence, patience and a sense of humor are key to success in music education.

VIRGINIA

Linda J. Gammon Rachel Carson Middle School Herndon Total years teaching: 32 Years at current school: 5 Students in program: 278 Proudest moment as an educator: I actually have several: Midwest Clinic appearances in 1993 and 2000 with Robinson Middle School; the 1998 John Philip Sousa Sudler Silver Cup Concert; and watching former students become great teachers. Making a difference in students’ lives: Band rehearsals should be structured to create a love of music that will last a lifetime, while instilling pride, discipline, and a cooperative spirit as we work together as a group toward a common goal of excellence. Often times just a simple comment of, “I hope you are having a great day,” “How was your weekend?” or, “You did a great job today” are an easy way to show that we care for students and are interested in the development of the total child. My hope is that students can look back on their middle school band experience and talk not just about making great music but also about the life skills they learned through their music.

Key to a successful career in music ed: Maintaining high standards and always being consistent and fair, while keeping a sense of humor – especially when working at the middle school level – are essential to being successful in this business. We need to make ourselves an integral part of our schools and become part of the “team” within our building while promoting our art. This with a dose of hardwork and work ethic will go a long way to paving the road to a successful career.

WASHINGTON Robert Rink

Ferrucci Junior High School Puyallup Total years teaching: 23 Years at current school: 15 Students in program: 222 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment as an educator is watching the faces of the band members right after a performance. Whether the stage is a state or national conference or just a home concert, seeing the pride and ownership of the musical product reflected in the students’ body language is very rewarding. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope to make a difference by teaching students that the same formula for musical success will also prove helpful in other areas of life. I try to make them believe they are capable of achieving more than they think possible. Every student can strive for and attain a better best. Key to a successful career in music ed: 1) Seek advice and be willing to learn from others. 2) Stay actively involved with a musical performing group. 3) Continue to be a student of the profession and be willing to try something new.

WEST VIRGINIA Joel Cotter

Morgantown High School Morgantown Total years teaching: 22


Years at current school: 13 Students in program: 303 Proudest moment as an educator: Being involved with taking our Choir, Orchestra and Wind Ensemble to New York City and performing a concert of patriotic music for the relief workers at St. Paul’s Chapel near Ground Zero in February 2002. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope to make a difference in students’ lives by having them participate in the process of working together towards achieving a common goal, by striving for steady deliberate progress, and by hopefully, experiencing the success that results from this effort. Key to a successful career in music ed: Becoming a teacher, in my experience, involved a long learning curve. It took years to gain an understanding of my students and their needs, to develop patience and consistency, and to provide what I felt was necessary for their success in a performing ensemble. Working with colleagues helped in this development process, but ultimately, I had to find out what I believed was the right way to proceed with the organization of the ensembles under my care. So, the key to a successful career in music education is to teach long enough, to stay curious about the profession, and continue to search for answers and inspiration that might be useful to you and your students.

I enjoy. I get to work with students from grades five through 12 each day, and I get to do my part to bring beauty into this world all while supporting my wife and two children. I take tremendous pride in that! Making a difference in students’ lives: If I can awaken creativity and critical thinking in my students while fostering an appreciation for music, then I believe I am doing my job well. Key to a successful career in music ed: 1) Realizing that a music educator’s job is not as much about teaching music as it is about teaching people. 2) Maintaining a healthy balance between career and family is crucial to maintaining stamina. 3) Constant professional development prevents burnout.

WYOMING Wendy Gray

Campbell County High School, Twin Spruce Jr High School, & Sage Valley Jr High School Gillette Total years teaching: 20 Years at current school: 18 Students in program: 127 Proudest moment as an educator: My proudest moment as an educator

is seeing former students playing their instruments in community groups after high school/college and that they understand that music is for lifelong learning, not just for the moment. I enjoy hearing from former students and hearing their stories about their experiences after high school. Making a difference in students’ lives: I hope my class is the one where they feel safe to express themselves and know that when they have a bad day, orchestra will be a place that makes them feel good about themselves. I hope that my students know that I care about them and I want to give them the tools they need to be better people and musicians. Key to a successful career in music ed: The key to having a successful career in music education is knowing your field of expertise well, having a great amount of patience, a good sense of humor, and being willing to learn something new everyday. As a teacher, if you aren’t learning, then you have nothing new to share with your students. I feel that staying active as a performer is very important because you become a role model to your students and show them that music is something they can participate in for the rest of their lives.

WISCONSIN David Johnson

Williams Bay School District Williams Bay Total years teaching: 11 Years at current school: 6 Students in program: 130 Proudest moment as an educator: I don’t know if I have a proudest moment. I have many not-so-proudof-myself moments. But if I am allowed to take pride in anything I do, it’s knowing that I get up each and every morning and go to a job School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 61


SBOTechnology:

Tech Music Conferences

Start 2011 With a Super-Technology Charge!

T

he season of resolutions is just around the corner, and

BY JOHN KUZMICH, JR.

coming along with the New Year are two conferences that can help super-charge you and your program. To clarify and enable your technology dreams, con-

sider attending the NAMM Show (National Association of Music Merchants, www.namm.org) in Anaheim, California and the TI:ME Conference (Technology for Music Education, www.time.org) in Cincinnati, Ohio. Both of these shows exhibit handson technology solutions that can’t be beat.

Dr. John Kuzmich Jr. is a veteran music educator, jazz educator and music technologist with more than 41 years of public school teaching experience. He is a TI:ME-certified training instructor and has a Ph.D. in comprehensive musicianship. As a freelance author, Dr. Kuzmich has more than 400 articles and five textbooks published. As a clinician, Dr. Kuzmich frequently participates in workshops throughout the U.S., Europe, Australia, and South America. For more information, visit www.kuzmich.com.

62 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

Music Education Days at the NAMM Show For decades, The Winter NAMM Show has been the place where music manufacturers and retail professionals come face-to-face viewing the latest products and placing orders for the year ahead. It is the largest music trade show in the U.S., with an average of 85,000 attendees. Music Education Days was established in 2007 so that the music business community could network, discuss issues facing school music programs, and build familiarity with products and tools for success. Kymberly Drake of NAMM explains, “In the beginning, we restricted the invitation to Sunday only but at the request of music educators and exhibitors alike, we have expanded the opportunity to include two days – Saturday and Sunday. Yes, private and public school music educators, private music instructors, college professors, school administrators, and even school board members are welcome.“ And what’s especially nice is that unlike most attendees, teachers won’t have to pay any registration fees! This year’s event for music educators is January 15-16, 2011 with on-line registration available until December 15, 2011, as well as walk-in registration at the show


TI:ME TI:ME (Technology for Music Education) began in 1995 with a generous grant from NAMM. TI:ME’s current mission is to assist music educators in integrating technology into their classrooms through summer courses, workshops, resources lesson plan resources, articles, publications, and of course, their national conferences. The 2011 TI:ME conference is being held in Cincinnati, Ohio January 26-29, 2011 in conjunction with the Ohio Music Educators Conference. There will also be a special clinic-filled TI:ME pre-conference day on the 26th. TI:ME is without equal for its instructional opportunities dealing with the latest products and pedagogy. I was in awe at the TI:ME 2010 National Conference and its 90 music tech clin-

ics that were offered. The diversity and depth of clinic topics is amazing – they run from morning until evening, with four or five different clinics offered every hour. You can look forward to new ideas and insightful instruction on such topics as notation, sequencing, curriculum, ensembles, private lessons, multimedia, distance-learning, general music, smart phones, MIDI, and many more specialized topics. This list of the clinics is further subdivided into novice, intermediate, and advanced user needs. I have compiled a 27-page synopsis of the 2010 TI:ME clinics taught by nationally-known experts, which can be found at www. kuzmich.com/BestofTIME.pdf.

Floyd Richmond serves on the music faculty at Valley Forge Christian College and has attended every TI:ME national conference since 1998. He says, “The TI:ME national conference is always a collaboration between a state music education association (MEA) and TI:ME. The influx of national-level TI:ME presenters with the MEA technology experts strengthens both

Quality Instruments

in Anaheim, California. Events at NAMM’s Music Education Days include special hands-on educator workshops and panel discussions, clinics and presentations, as well as concerts by major contemporary music artists. It’s a wonderland of possibilities. Jeff Forehan, director of Commercial Music at West Valley College in Saratoga, California, was grateful of how last year’s NAMM Show helped him get organized. He says, “Last June we spent over $70,000 dollars expanding my Commercial Music Program because of the innovations presented that could be readily used. And we got a huge amount of instructional material well beyond our costs.” Aside from the sheer number of music manufacturers and publishers representing every aspect of the music industry including band, strings, music tech, and so on, what sets the Winter NAMM Show apart from any music educator conference is the ability to sit down with company representatives and clinicians and have hands-on experiences with their products. At the 2010 NAMM show, there were well over 100 music tech exhibitors and thousands of manufacturers offering both tech and non-tech product solutions for music educators. Most of the music tech exhibitors are strategically located in the same general area, making it easy to see their products and watch presentations/demonstrations, which are usually scheduled every hour. No other conference has such high visibility of music technology products. Wiley Cruse, director of bands at Evergreen High Schools in Evergreen, Colorado is another NAMM Show believer. He states, “It was valuable to be able to demo so many new software and products in a single place. I have established several k-12 music tech programs over the last 5 years, and no conference resources even comes close to the NAMM show. I was grateful to attend, and hope to come back next year. We saw many great products, and heard some great ideas that we can now use to contribute to our music school.” Because NAMM is the top music trade show, new products are routinely released there for the very first time, which means attendees can often see tomorrow’s music innovations today. It is an exciting way to get ahead of the curve for new products and updates. [Also at the 2011 Winter NAMM Show, SBO Magazine is again teaming up with educators attending the show to select the best Tools for Schools from the exhibit hall floor. Visit www. sbomagazine.com or email esussman@symphonypublishing.com to learn how you can participate in this exciting event. – Ed.]

That Your School and Students Can Afford

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NEW MANHASSET® Harmony Stand Model # 81

The Harmony Stand is designed for impressive functionality and, with its oor stacking base, amazingly convenient storage. The Harmony Stands’ “V-shaped” bases conveniently stack in an incredibly small amount of oor space. This stand is perfect for environments demanding a very stable and rugged stand, and locations where storage space is limited. The stand incorporates the time-proven MANHASSET shaft with its “Magic Finger Clutch” no-knob height adjustment.

conferences and brings a wealth of new ideas and techniques for using technology in the classroom. I have never missed a TI:ME national conference, and I always leave with new and exciting ideas.” Some of the upcoming highlights at the 2011 TI:ME conference are: • Smartboard sessions on how to use a particular technology in the music classroom • YouTube in music education • SmartMusic in the music program • How to utilize Web 2.0 • Sessions on GarageBand, Mixcraft Logic, Finale, Sibelius, iPad, iLife and more • Sessions on reaching the other 80 percent of the student body. • Sessions on recording, composition, performance and integration • Keynote address by renowned composer Morton Subotnick • Concert by the TI:ME Technology All-Stars

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Master of Music in Music Education

Some of the sessions at the 2011 conference in Cincinnati will be videotaped and posted on the TI:ME Web site for those who cannot get to the conference. TI:ME is also fortunate to have found company sponsors who are great assets to music educators and music technology, includeing Alfred Publishing, Avid, EarMaster, Kelly’s Music and Computers, MakeMusic, PreSonus, and SoundTree.

Closing Comments

Get In-State Tuition! You don’t have to quit your day job to get a master’s degree! For more information contact: Dr. Lorie Enloe lenloe@uidaho.edu 208-885-0157 www.class.uidaho.edu/music_education

64 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

No need to wait for summer to retool, take recertification courses, and rejuvenate. January conferences are perfect for grabbing recertification credits and focusing your annual budget process on the latest best practices and products. Believe me, technology can be that key ingredient that keeps you curious, creative, young at-heart no-matter how experienced you are. At www.kuzmich.com/SBO122010. html you’ll find more information about TI:ME and NAMM, along with bonus coverage of the jazz education innovations to be found at the upcoming JEN (Jazz Education Network) national conference.


NewProducts Forestone Reeds

Forestone’s synthetic reeds are made of a proprietary resin that contains wood cellulose fibre, more than 50 per-

reed. It even has the “U-shaped” gradation in the vamp that can be seen when the reed is held up to the light. Forestone reeds will not warp, become water logged, or change due to temperature or altitude and require no adjusting or conditioning.

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CSX from Remo

cent of which is bamboo. In addition, Forestone reeds are injection molded as opposed to machined using knives and other shaping and cutting tools. This fabrication produces a reed with a smooth vamp and a flat underside that is similar in color to a cane

PSD410 $799

Remo has expand their X Series drumheads with the new Controlled Sound X. The Controlled Sound X is constructed of a coated 12-mil film with a five-mil reverse dot. Featuring 20 percent more durability and tone control, drummers will experience more controlled mid range tones. Current CSX endorsers include: Virgil Donati, Joey Jordison, Jason Bonham, and Alex Gonzalez just to name a few. Available in sizes 10”, 12”, 13”, and 14”.

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Oxford University Press has release the second edition of Angela Myles Beeching’s Beyond Talent: Creating a Successful Career in Music. This expanded second edition provides updated user-friendly advice, examples, and practical tools to advance a career in music. Packed with new tips and resources, Beyond Talent now covers everything from social networking tools, to commissioning, branding, and online fundraising, as well as tips on staying motivated, assessing one’s strengths and weaknesses, and managing time, money, and stress.

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Zoom Launches Q3HD Video Recorder

Zoom’s new Q3HD Handy Video Recorder was designed to record

PSD450 $1199

The PSD410 and PSD450 are professional audio recorders with the tools and performance necessary for musicians, vocalists and students to improve and for educators to save time.

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66 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010

Beyond Talent from Oxford

both HD video and HD audio (24bit/96kHz). The Q3HD takes Zoom’s audio technology and combines it with 1080p video that will make live musical performances look and sound. This point-and-shoot recorder features both full HD 1080p at 30 fps (frames per second) and 720p at 30 or 60 fps. A 4x digital zoom and a larger, redesigned aperture is paired with three lighting settings ensuring the perfect amount of light in every shot.


NewProducts Zoom’s exclusive “Concert Lighting” setting allows the camera to capture clear, detailed videos even in light intensive environments that would cause most camcorders to wash out. Q3HD uses the same microphone capsules as Zoom’s H4n recorder, configured in a wide 120° X/Y pattern for stereo recordings. Setting audio levels is easy using the onboard level meters and mic gain switch with auto gain control. The Q3HD also has a builtin USB 2.0 cable to transfer, view, and edit movies on a PC or Mac.

Intervallic Ear Training for Musicians

Steve Prosser’s Intervallic Ear Training for Musicians is the product of 35

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Marshall’s Major Headphones

The Major headphones from Marshall features a headband that is made out of the same vinyl used in Marshall Amplifiers and bears the original Marshall texture. The coil cord refers to vintage style guitar cables and the plug is a 3.5 millimetre replica of a classic tele plug, which can be used with the included 6.3 mm adapter for plugging in to a stereo. The Major headphones are foldable for easy storage and transportation.

www.marshallheadphones.com

Bohemia Piano’s Rhapsody

years studying and teaching interval awareness in music. The text provides a step-by-step method for assimilation of, as well as graded exercises for, each interval. Each chapter concludes with mastery exercises and etudes. After adequate study of the text, the student will be able to hear, recognize, read, and write music through the use of musical intervals. This skill is particularly helpful in dealing with music that is extremely chromatic, tonally ambiguous, or rapidly modulating.

Percussion Masterclass on Works by Carter, Milhaud and Stravinsky

Percussion Masterclass on Works by Carter, Milhaud and Stravinsky, the latest work in the Meredith Music master class series, presents a comprehensive, interpretive analysis and performance guide of three legendary compositions for timpani and percussion. Together, Morris Lang, Charles Dowd, and Anthony J. Cirone have put a lifetime of performance and study experience into an extensive volume featuring Eight Pieces for Four Timpani by Elliott Carter, Concertino for Percussion and Small Orchestra by Darius Milhaud and l’Histoire du Soldat by Igor Stravinsky. This in-depth, publication includes corrections of wrong notes, rhythms, phrasings, and dynamics, revised notation when original music was difficult to read, and suggested muffling to enhance interpretation.

www.meredithmusic.com

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Bohemia Piano America’s new Rhapsody piano line was created in the design department of C. Bechstein Europe in Hradec Králové, Czech Republic. The designs of the models Rhapsody R121 and R114 are available in ebony polish, mahogany polish and walnut polish. The Rhapsody line will be completed in 2011 with the professional models R126 and R132 which will first be available in ebony polish.

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School Band and Orchestra, December 2010 67


NewProducts New & Anniversary Titles from Alfred

Carpentier and Alfred Music Publishing have released The Music of the Lord of the Rings Films, a comprehensive account of Howard Shore’s scores

Alfred’s Beginning Drumset Method reached its milestone 20th anniversary in 2010. Written by renowned authors and educators Dave Black and Sandy Feldstein, this classic method has been used by students and teachers at all levels. Originally released in 1990, the publication has expanded from its original book format to include a DVD and play-along CD. Lessons in the book are written with a practical approach, and start by immediately teaching students to play their first beat. Students will learn the hi-hat, ride cymbal, snare, and bass drum in the styles of rock and jazz. from the popular trilogy, by musicologist Doug Adams. The culmination of almost a decade of writing and research, The Music of the Lord of the Rings Films, is a journey into the heart of Howard Shore’s Academy Award-winning score, with extensive music examples, original manuscript scores, a rarities CD, and glimpses into the creative process from the composer himself. The 416-page full-color book features a foreword by Howard Shore, introduction by Lord of the Rings writer and producer Fran Walsh, original sketches by John Howe and Alan Lee, and numerous images from the films. Also included in the book, courtesy of HOWE Records, is a CD titled “The Rarities,” which features 21 tracks of previously unreleased music created for the films, as well as an audio interview with Howard Shore.

www.alfred.com

Kendor Music’s How to Play Drums in a Big Band

How to Play Drums in a Big Band, by Rich Thompson, focuses on improvisation, with emphasis on style precision. The book and accompanying CD offers tips, suggestions and examples to help put it all together.

www.kendormusic.com

Theodore Presser’s Stepping Out

Theodore Presser’s Stepping Out is a solo work for contrabass and piano by American composer Peter Schickele. Commissioned by bassist Gary Karr and his accompanist Harmon Lewis, Stepping Out features two highly stylized dances (polka and tango) followed by a driven, jazz-tinged finale with virtuosic passages. It is best suited for advanced players.

www.presser.com 68 School Band and Orchestra, December 2010


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Smear the ‘Bone “When working on developing phrasing on the trombone using effective air support, use the technique called ‘smearing.’ Before articulating the passage, try not using any tonguing and use a glissando slide technique through the passage. This gives the player an idea of the amount of air support needed to play the passage before adding articulation. This technique can be used for both technical and lyrical types of playing.” Rich Stichler Lakeview-Ft. Oglethorpe High School Ft. Oglethorpe, Ga. Submit your PLAYING TIP online at www.sbomagazine.com or e-mail it to editor Eliahu Sussman: esussman@symphonypublishing.com. Win a special prize from EPN Travel, Inc. Winning Playing Tips will be published in School Band and Orchestra magazine.

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SAVE THE DATE!

2nd Annual JEN Conference January 6-8, 2011 New Orleans, LA Historic Roosevelt Hotel – Famed Blue Room Details online NOW! • Exciting Headliners • Enlightening Clinics/Panels • Exhilarating School Ensemble Performances • Enticing Exhibits – 20,000 sq. ft.! All under one roof, two blocks from the French Quarter! Registration, Housing, Exhibitor & Volunteer Applications available online NOW!

Check the website often for updates as they materialize! www.JazzEdNet.org Your portal to the global jazz community!



SBO December 2010