Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Solo and Ensemble

Solos have now been selected for all of my middle school students! Those of you at Dulles have had your solos selected by your band directors and we will start working on them at your next lesson now that Region Band auditions are over.

Those at Hamilton had yours selected yesterday. Most of you have a "solo buddy" that is playing the same solo as you. That way you can compare notes, offer tips to one another and generally help each other along during your journey learning a new piece of music.

As an opportunity to earn stickers, I would like ALL of you to listen to ALL of the solos that are being learned by my students. Please keep checking back for sticker opportunities.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Just Keep Swimming

One of my favorite Disney movies is Finding Nemo. If you have seen this movie, you know the silly blue fish, Dory, made famous the phrase "just keep swimming!" As you approach your Region Band auditions, remember to just keep swimming! No matter what happens, just keep playing. Use your very best, confident sound at all times. If you mess up, just keep going. Don't stop. Pretend it didn't happen and just keep swimming!

The Musical Breath

The flute is a wind instrument which means that we use our breath in order to make a sound. We get to breathe life into our music. I keep reminding my students to PLAY the breath, not to merely TAKE a breath. The breath is music too. A mature player will plan every single breath because it is a part of the music. It will sound like it belongs there. He will properly set up the breath with care and finesse and carefully continue the phrase once executing the breath. It is not just a chance to suck air into one's lungs, but an occasion that can make or break a beautiful and thoughtful performance. Please take care to make your breath a musical breath!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Region Band Slow √Čtude

To my Dulles Middle School flute students:

Because I had to go out of town for a few weeks, I did not want you to miss out on too much. For those of you auditioning for Region Band on November 12th, this is the slower of the two etudes. I made this recording in my back yard with puppies at my feet, so please forgive the video quality and the hair! Enjoy!

Friday, September 17, 2010

J.S.Bach. Partita for flute solo

For my Hamilton Middle School and Dulles Middle School Flutists,

Start this video at the 4:38 (Hamilton) or 7:26 (Dulles) mark. Sound familiar? After you finish listening to that part, I would strongly encourage you to take the time to listen to the entire clip from the beginning. After all it takes less than 10 minutes! You can do anything for 10 minutes!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

New School Year

Dear Flute Students and Parents,

I am looking forward to the new school year, and I am happy that I have the opportunity to work with all of you! I have high hopes and expectations of you, the student, and I hope you feel the same way. Flute lessons are hard work, yet the rewards are great!

I am excited about starting a flute blog. Many nights after returning home from teaching lessons, I notice a trend of the day. Perhaps there is a problem with rhythm that all students are experiencing. Perhaps it is trouble with tempo. Maybe everyone just needs a kind word that day because reports, projects, and other deadlines are approaching. This is my attempt to share my thoughts on flute with you, the students and parents, in a fun way!

I will post announcements on this site, as well as keep in touch with you the old-fashioned way. Feel free to ask questions or make requests in the comments section after each post. I look forward to hearing from all of you!

See you next week and don't forget to practice!