I am attending the annual Music Teachers Association of CA (MTAC) convention in Santa Clara this weekend.
Here's a summary of the events I attended today:
New Music lecture by Gail Lew:
- A presentation of newly published works for piano. Each attendee received a packet with descriptive listings regarding the new works. The packet also included complimentary copies of select pieces. Free stuff -- hooray!
Melody Bober lecture:
- Mlle. Bober gave suggestions for how to effectively teach rhythm to younger students. I need to buy a wood block!
Michael Schneider Intermediate Master Class:
- Schneider, a noted concert pianist and teacher, tutored a select group of 5 students. Each student prepared 1 piece to perform, and then Schneider spent 10-15 minutes with each performer making suggestions and encouraging each how they can improve future performances. Some of these kids are musical machines. I am thinking of one of the little rascals in particular, though unlike your typical robot, he was visibly enjoying himself.
Gary Ingle lecture:
- Ingle is Executive Director and CEO of Music Teachers National Association (MTNA), the oldest music teacher association in the United States. He spoke on how music teachers ought not to bunker themselves, hiding away when faced with adversity. Instead we ought to be adaptable and confident of the essential role we play in society. We all know that schools and communities are perpetually cutting music education funding, but what will our response be?
I particularly appreciated this remark he made in the middle of his presentation: "The private music teacher is the backbone of the arts community." (Gary is an idealist, like me)
I'll post again tomorrow.