Monday, July 2, 2018

July 2018 Newsletter

Dear AOS Parents, Students, and Friends,

            We can’t believe that it’s already July! Is anyone else feeling surreal about the fact that 2018 is half over? There’s lots more going on before the year ends!

TAKE NOTE: We are closed July 2-6th:

            We are closed for the first week of July (2-6.) Lessons will resume on Monday, July 9th.

2018-2019 Priority/Open Registration Reminder:

            Priority Registration will begin for the 2018-2019 school year on Monday, July 9th, at 6pm. To register, you must be a family enrolled this summer. You will simply log into your account, and select what lesson times you would like to enroll in for the school year. Open Registration will begin the following Sunday, July 15th. To enroll for lessons at AOS, new students will need to go to:

Smile! You could be on camera:

            We’ll be hosting an AOS photo shoot on Monday, July 16th at 10am. Erin will send out any additional details regarding this before the event date.

The reviews are in and…. Jack and the Beanstalk was a success:

            For just about three weeks, ten dedicated students ages 6-12 rehearsed and prepared the musical production of Jack and the Beanstalk. The show was directed Elisa Kaether, a familiar face to the AOS family. Academy Founder and piano teacher, Erin Chisman, who helped to prepare the young performers for their roles, provided music direction!
            On Saturday, June 30th, a final performance was held in the sanctuary of First Presbyterian for friends, family and concertgoers.  Over the course of roughly an hour, audience members laughed and cheered through the tale of Jack and his beanstalk.
            This talented group of performers presented a musical that they should be very proud of! Way to go, everyone!
            Missed it? Watch here!

Students Recognitions:

            Even in the sweltering heat, our students are still working hard at their instruments. We wanted to shout out to a few of them who finished a level in their lesson books this month!

Delainey Halverson leveled up to 2A in piano
Henry Rothering leveled up to 2A in piano
Aaron Meyers leveled up to 2 in guitar
Erica Briski leveled up to 4 in Suzuki violin

Way to go, everyone!

Teacher Tips:

            Our voice teacher, Kirstin Roble, offers some helpful tips for summer music lessons.

1.     Bring a water bottle: This may seem obvious, but I say this over and over in lessons each week. It’s hot, and dry. Moving in and out of buildings can make you feel less hydrated. Make sure you are keeping a water bottle with you, and sipping from it regularly.

2.     Schedule a time to practice: It’s summer, and there’s so much to do this time of year. I’m guilty of this as well (pool, farmer’s market, outdoor events!) but what I find helpful is to block a time each day to practice. For me, I like to practice early afternoon, about an hour after I’ve had lunch. I feel more energetic then, and I’m not yet at that point in the day where I just want to sit outside and watch the sun go down.

3.     Are you confused? Don’t be afraid to say something: When you’re learning a new instrument or refining the one you are studying, it’s easy to get bogged down by a new concept. If you are feeling confused or unsure of what the teacher is asking you, don’t be afraid to speak up and ask questions. We need your feedback sometimes just as much as you need ours!

Tips of the Trade Post:

            Each month, we are adding a short post to help you grow in musical studies. This month, we are focusing on practicing and how regular practice can help you progress in your musical studies. Read more below.

5 Reasons why developing a regular practice routine is important:

            In your lessons, it’s safe to assume that your teacher has suggested on a regular basis what and how often you need to practice on your own.  Practice? Like doing homework, you may think as your teacher runs you through the weekly assignments to work on.  Wonder how this extra work will help you progress? You’d be surprised!

1.     Muscle Memory: Playing an instrument (voice, piano, guitar, violin, you name it) requires developing muscle memory. In order to learn a difficult passage and be able to play it at the tempo asked of you, it needs to be practiced over and over.  If you only play your instrument at lessons, your muscles will have a tough time remembering what your worked on from week to week.

2.     Consistency is important: As with many activities in life, consistency is important. Practicing can help you develop that in your technique and the pieces that you are working on.

3.     Lessons are more productive: Re-visiting the same piece and passage week after week is not fun for either the teacher or the student. As a teacher, we want to help you soar above any challenging sections. When you practice at home, we can be better use your lesson to fix trouble spots as well as move into new music more quickly!

4.     New Discoveries: In practicing, you may discover something new about your piece that could inform your work in future piece. For instance, if you find that you are left hand moves quickly through fast sixteenth-note passages in piano music, but your right hand does not, it may inform how you practice sections like that in future pieces.

5.     Confidence booster: While practicing may seem boring at the time, we guarantee it will help increase your confidence in lessons and performance. When you know what you are doing, you feel better and want to do more!

While the term “practicing” suggests an activity that may not seem exciting, the results can be! Next week, when your teacher gives you new assignments to work on, pay attention and then go home and work! You’ll be glad that you did!

That’s all, folks! Have a great July, and we’ll be back for another edition in August!

-Kirstin Roble