Grading contract, 1999-2000, MMEA Convention : LUSENET : M.Ed./International Falls : One Thread

Donna Frederickson 904 2nd St. International Falls, MN 56649 SS# 472-60-5982 Ph. 218-283-3763 Email: >> Grading contract for 1999-2000, UMD, M.Ed. International Falls Cohort >> A Report on the 74th Annual Midwinter In-Service Clinic, Minnesota Music Educators Conference, February 17-19, 2000 >> The following is a synopsis of the MMEA Clinic that I attended. Some of the sessions are reported as reviews of the concert or session and some of the sessions are reported from the standpoint of interesting, new information useful to the classroom. >> Thursday, Feb. 17, 2000 >> History of Music Education in Minnesota >> I was interested in this session given by Sondra Howe, PhD, because I am doing historical research for my M.Ed paper for UMD. The historical information that Sondra Howe presented was on the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, St. Paul, Baldwin School (later, Macalester College), St. Olaf, Minnesota Music Teachers Association, Music Supervisors National Conference (later, MENC), McPhail School of Music, Interlochen National Music Camp, Duluth Symphony and All State Band, Choir and Orchestra. She provided names of founders, initiators and directors. College music departments established for instructing preservice teachers in music education were noted. The material was presented in chronological order, accompanied by slides and a handout. The handout had a list of sources and that I was very pleased to receive. >> High School Choral Reading Session >> I was pleased to receive the music packet. I love having a copy of music to play at school, reference and keep in my files. If I cannot buy it immediately or cannot use it on a concert in the near future, it is still great to have it in my files for future use. The music was in a wide range of ability this year, and I was happy to see that. It is always thrilling to hear all of the beautiful voices of choir directors reading the music. >> Friday, February 18, 2000 Choir Open Forum >> Mark Nelson, MMEA Choral Vice President led the discussion. There was discussion on technology, internet sources for music searches, part recordings, copyright laws, choir inter relations and director inter relations, accompanists, opportunities for students to sing the National Banner for games and various arrangements and student assessment. The assessment discussion was most interesting to me to hear how others are approaching individual assessment in the large group. Some ideas: Do in sectionals, one sing a page, phrase, section of the music, go down the row so all know that they have to do it and it is not intimidating because they all get to hear it and they all have to do it, small group sing a section, SSB for events, ensembles out of the full choir music. >> Coon Rapids Concert Choir >> Awesome group! The choirs that I hear at this convention are so good! The sound, their appearance and even their programs are superior. I wish every choir in the state could see these units at the convention, especially mine. This choir's selections were of a wide variety. I loved hearing a high school choir perform the "Movement II" from "Chichester Psalms" by Leonard Bernstein. That is a difficult piece and one that I would not expect to hear in a high school choir. The most amazing song to me was "Run the Race" by one of the choir students, Steve Anderson. What an amazing heart felt song with a beautiful, running piano accompaniment, and from a school senior! >> Moorhead Junior High School Honor Choir >> I enjoyed the enthusiasm of this choir. There were more girls than boys, and that is the same problem that I have. Some of the ideas that I liked and want to try with my Junior High Choir: Students did the introductions of the songs. I was impressed with how they introduced one song by singing the chorus in solfege. This is good for their learning and showing the parents and audience. I loved the energy of the "Toccata" with some boys doing the physical rhythm/tempo intro. I loved the passion, poetry and interdisciplinary theme work done on the Holocaust in "United Nations Round". Choir sings "oo" behind the poetry, small group dialogue, and then work into the round/song. >> Visit the Exhibit Hall, Open noon hour with no sessions. >> I would like more time than just this one hour to visit the exhibits during the day. The free time we have when the vendors are open is so limited. Otherwise, the vendors are open from 8:00 to 5:00, but there are sessions to attend during that time. It is vital to see the new products and have time to try them. I needed to pick up some information on colleges and music departments for some of the choir students, my own summer school material, summer camp material for students, buy resource books at MENC, buy some classroom materials, get quotes on instruments and buy some file music. So, the hour goes very fast! >> Group Voice: Techniques for Efficient Singing >> I was anxious to hear Clifton Ware because our daughter had him at the U of M for a voice class from and used his book, Adventures in Singing, (1995,1998). New York: McGraw-Hill. Also, another book by him: Ware, Clifton, (1998) Basics of Vocal Pedagogy. New York: McGraw-Hill. Vocalizes he used: most sung on d, m, s, d, s, m, d. Point with the hand to direct and/or follow the sound. This will help the sound up into the high register and arch the music in the head. Ex: Ee/ee/ae/ah/ah/oe/oo. Make the sound the most efficient way possible. Keep a high focal point. Spinning breath. Singing is vibration and resonation. Ex. To bring the vocal folds together for vibrating: siren, whine, moan. Mouth, nasal cavity and throat need to connect. Most students use only mouth resonating. How we shape and produce the vowels is the end result of resonating. Where do we feel the sound being produced? Where do we hear the sound being produced? Bass/baritone, pivotal note E, tenor is F#. You will not hurt a voice if it is placed and resonated properly. Ex. Lip buzz. Use siren, loosens jaw, need breath, develops head voice and range. D/m/s/d/s/m/d. Ex. Sing "yum, yum, etc." and/or "yah, yah, etc." D/m/s/d/s/m/d. Practice speech, radio announcer, deep voice, all air, then combine with resonance and bring sound up to focal point. Ex. "ng or ning or hung" on s/f/m/r/d. "yum, yum, etc" going down. Shout "Hi!" and point and arc the sound and arm. Opens throat. Pretend to place the soft palette as if you are going to sneeze. When you sing low, don't relax or lose the high focal point. Breath support will come if all the rest is taken care of. Ex. Twang sound or a country singer or guitar. "Nare" on S/f/m/r/d, and then open up and sing to the focal point in the center of the forehead. Cat's "meow" may also work. Put finger on the center of the forehead and sing to it. Focus the voice there and feel the vibration there. Let each student, as well as us, develop the "real you" sound. "Don't turn them all into imitators of you, let your student develop his or her sound, as long as it is pleasant and generally correct." >> Duluth Each A'Cappella Choir >> One of my piano students, Theresa Geving, who I taught 30 years ago, had a daughter in this choir so I was anxious to hear the choir and get to see Theresa. The choir was wonderful. It did not perform all a cappella, as its name suggests. The first piece had a string chamber group accompanying and that is a neat sound. The "Choralaires", a group of 16, had a great ensemble sound. Sang "Chili Con Carne", Anders Edenroth. Super song, vocal jazz, Latin salsa. To help the unity and ensemble sound: The director, Brandon Johnson, had the full choir and Choralaires hold hands. I'm not sure I could convince my choir to do that. The choir used folders of music on most songs. Held them high so vocal production correct. Loved their black velvet robes and the girls all wearing the same shoes. Theresa told me her daughter goes in for sectionals 2 times a week, 45 min. before school, fall to Dec., the choir records and sells all concerts, has choir parent meetings, choir performs at least 5 concerts a year. This is Brandon Johnson's last year at Duluth, he's going east to Westminster College next year. Loved the group pictures at Glensheen mansion on the programs. >> Conducting Master Class >> Rodney Eichenberger led this session and he has a video on directing. Relationship between hand gesture, facial gesture, body position and choral sound. How are we modeling to our choir? Ex: Hi/low, here/there, up/down. Have choir repeat. Use hand gesture with the words. Hand: palm up, palm down. When directing, work for a round fluid motion. Don't need to beat 1,2,3,4. The choir will know where you are. - I'm not sure my accompanist and instrumentalists will know where I am, though. Keep motion low, in front of the body. (However, when Kathy Romey directed the All State Choir her motions were not small, in front of her body and her results were good.) Don't mouth the words, because when a director does that they usually over demonstrate the words and that gets the choir to relay too overly tense word, not focussed correctly. Look at your choir, if you want them to look at you. Trust your choir. The circle is the most comfortable directing gesture and it helps get the continuous, flowing sound. I'm not sure I believe all Eichenberger said, but I'll try some of his methods. >> Evening Concert. Keynote Address: "Music, School and community! Working together in the New Millennium," Jeff Kimpton, Director, School of Music, U of M., TC. Performances by Uof M, Morris Concert Choir and U of St. Thomas Symphonic Wind Ensemble. >> Jeff Kimpton: A reflection he learned from a history teacher and remembers is, "You won't know where you're going unless you know where you came from." He went through a short historical review of 20th century music activities, interests, societies and education practices. In the past century and into the 21st century, three areas evident in research: 1. All K-12 music education has grown and it is necessary to develop teachers in all areas of music education and vocal and instrument instruction. 2. Culturally and musically Americans define themselves with music. 3. Since the beginning of MTV, the majority of people ages 12-35 are influenced more by that channel and spend more time watching that channel than any other. (That's frightening!!) The public has become a "music consuming machine" and the personal options that we have in music abound. Our choices in music today are more personalized, challenging and full of choices. (And this fits right in with the big push in everything we have access to, and that is CHOICE!) In the 21st century, we are going to have to know the difference between advocacy and change. There won't just be band, orchestra and choir in the future. Brain research we're using now to justify music will be to research others areas in which the brain develops through the arts. Technology will be the driving thrust of change in the music area. Music education may very well take place anywhere in the future, such as the web. Not only the home and school as it is now. Diversity in all cultures will be a part of the 21st century and how the role of music will help us to learn and accept them. Music roles outside the K-12 and college education area may be more important that what we find inside of those areas now. We need to find our new position and how to use the new music of the 21st century. The 21st century challenges us to "Share the Mind," by using music in new, different and challenging ways. We will have to know how to compete and combine the new elements. The role of schools will be to produce a successful future for students. Collective actions make good things happen. >> University of Minnesota-Morris Choir and Ken Hodgson, director. I don't know if it was the hall, the choir, or me, but the pitch of this choir bothered me most of the time. The sopranos were singing very high in too many parts of the music and the pitch was hard to control with such a wide spread in the chord. The voices also had a darker, mature sound that is harder to control pitch. I was pleased to hear a couple of Hodgson's arrangements and an original piece that he wrote. Loved the "Two Pieces Based on Gregorian Chant" and "Shalom" at the end. That is a very fitting way to end a concert. >> University of St. Thomas Symphonic Wind Ensemble and Matthew George, conductor. This band was not very large, but had great balance. Loved the fact that they performed several commissioned pieces and maybe the band has had pieces commissioned to be sure that the music will fit their size and sound. The music was mostly contemporary, the Puccini the oldest piece. My favorite piece of the whole evening was the "Two Lullabies" with the rich voice of the baritone, Alan Bryan, singing with the choir. The words and the music were so moving. Unique experience to hear a "world premiere" composition in the concert. >> Saturday, Feb. 19, 2000 Elementary Choral Reading Session >> This session was packed. I enjoy finding some easier 2 and 3 part music for all of my choirs, whether junior high, women's or SATB high school. Sometimes I need to find a pretty song with simple harmonies that can be easily learned. There were several songs like that in the packet and will be useful sources. >> Comprehensive Arts Planning Program (CAPP): Catalyst for Arts Education in Minnesota Communities >> We have a CAPP committee in Int'l Falls, I'm a part of the committee and I wanted to go to this session to see if we are still on the right track, to hear what other communities are doing and obtain some resources. CAPP wants to be a positive impact on curriculum and the thrust to promote arts in the school and community. The communities need to define their focus and involve people from all brackets of the community's structure. Some of the communities where positive outcomes have been are Staples, an auditorium, Kelliher, multi use space for after school programs, multi age use and art programs, Robbinsdale, video of their schools art programs for new residents, grant focus, art displays and programs, and Red Lake Falls, the clay works. Dovetail! Web site for Presidents Committee on Arts and Humanities: Book from the web site (huge to down load) www.pcah./ >> All State Men's, Mixed and Women's Choir Concert >> Mixed Choir, Kathy Romey, conductor. I had a master's class from Kathy Romey a few years ago, so I was anxious to see how she directed and put together her program. In the class, she said that she wanted the performers and audience to learn something about diversity and music skills in a concert, and I think she achieved that. She loves getting into the music and getting everyone else into it. The last piece was special, the choir and audience got into it. ("Glory, Glory, Hallelujah," Rev. Sam Davis) Loved bringing in the soloist and jazz pianist from the Moore by 4. Good idea to remember and use. The choir used folders. I hope that this becomes acceptable. I'd rather have the right notes and words than have anyone float during a performance. Spiritual, to look into: "Glory to the Newborn King," arr. Robert Morris. >> Women's Choir, Janet Galvan, conductor. Loved the double choir sound in the auditorium at the beginning and coming on stage with "Now I Walk in Beauty", Gregg Smith. My choirs sing that song and I love it. She also included multi cultural music. "When I Am Silent", one of my favorites from the Women's concert section, is a touching piece, a Holocaust theme, with Joan Varner, the composer. This choir also used folders on some music and Galvan seemed to be a more expressive, wider director. >> Men's Choir, Tim Peter, conductor. I love hearing a men's choir and to see a men's choir of 75 voices is very special. The depth of the sound is so different from my women's choirs. The choir memorized their music, no folders. Peter's style of conducting is very quiet, contained. I heard some great young men performing the solos in some of the pieces. The choir closed with a spiritual, and that seems to be the trend for the concerts today. It's a great closer for all, performers and audience. >> >> >> The conference is three full days. There are so many interesting sessions that go on at the same time, so it is very hard to make up your mind as to which one that you want to attend. Every hour, there are always choirs or bands performing, instrumental and vocal sessions, classroom music sessions or other related informational sessions. The worst part of the conference is parking downtown Minneapolis, but I'm not getting lost as much as I used to.

-- Anonymous, February 21, 2000

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