Coming October 7th: Flute Rx!
Friday, July 28, 2017 by Jessica Valiente | Workshops
Band directors and instrumental music teachers, I know you don't want to think about this right now. You're grilling on the back deck, or you're sipping a margarita with your feet up, or you're watching the kids splash around at the water's edge in Seaside Heights. You definitely don't want anyone to say the "S" word (either of the "S" words). I hear you. Sc---l and Sep----er are forbidden words in our house in July, as well (my husband is a middle school instrumental music teacher and band director, like so many of you). But that day is coming. The day is coming when the rental instruments will have been delivered to your band room, you'll have a room full of bright, shiny faces in front of you, eagerly waiting to make that first, satisfying sound on their new instruments.
And then there are the FLUTES.
It's rare that a kid gets a great first sound on their instrument, no matter what the instrument is. But for the little flutist, they often don't get even a squeaky, squawky, or buzzy sound on the first try. Usually, they get no sound, which can be very disheartening. And if flute is not your primary instrument, helping them get that first, good, satisfying sound can be an elusive goal. Even for the most seasoned veteran woodwind teacher, there is always that one kid...but you don't have to give up on them.
We flute specialists have quite of few tricks and tips that were probably not covered in your woodwind methods class, and we have access to the latest helpful devices that help young flute students get off to a great start. In this workshop, I share these tricks and tools with you. I also dispell any flute myths that may be holding your students (or even you) back, review care and maintenance, provide you with a list of the latest peer-approved resources, and a list of the best maintenance people in the area.
This workshop takes place at Spinosa Music Center in Belleville, NJ. Spinosa specializes in quality second-hand musical instruments, has large instruments for school collections (basses, bari saxes, tubas, percussion). They also have the complete variety of Latin percussion and traditional Latin stringed instruments (cuatro, tres, laud, etc.). Plus all of your usual band and orchestra instruments and accessories.
The workshop is FREE but space is limited! Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for complete details and to register.
Hope to see you there!
Beautiful Stokes Forest Music Camp
Wednesday, July 19, 2017 by Jessica Valiente | Uncategorized
I'm sitting at a shared computer in the conference room of the School of Conservation at Stokes State Forest in Sandyston, New Jersey. The view from my window is of green fields, trees, ancient rocks with half a dozen tiny chipmunks cavorting around them, and beautiful Lake Wanalappe. The only thing that could be more wonderful than being here would be being here while playing music with accomplished colleagues and teaching flute and chamber music to marvelously smart and talented tweens and teens -- oh, wait! That's what I'm doing!
I cannot find adequate words to tell all of you what an exciting, fun, and gratifying experience this has been -- teaching at Stokes Forest Music Camp. My own children are campers here, and I can see that they and all of their fellow campers are having the time of their lives, all while learning and making great music. Stokes Forest Music Camp offers something for every young musician, ages 10-17. There are opportunities for instrumentalists and vocalists, with orchestra, concert band, jazz band, rock band, select choir, a musical theater production, chamber music, brass ensemble, percussion ensemble, private lessons, and nightly concerts and presentations by Stokes faculty, counselors, and campers. Many students are multi-instrumentalists, and they have the opportunity to grow on their primary instrument (or voice) and also explore a secondary instrument. Stokes Forest Music Camp is a 2-week sleep-away camp. One-week attendance is an option, and students in nearby Sussex County, NJ, and eastern Pennsylvania, can be day-campers if they prefer. The sleep-away experience is an extraordinary opportunity for your child to develop independence, personal responsibility, and self-confidence, while being guided by caring counselors who facilitate mutual courtesy, cooperation, and sensitivity among the campers.
If you're interested in sending your young musician to this wonderful summer camp in 2018, check out their website for information in the beginning of next year: