The Music for All Blog
The Music for All Blog

Stories (290)

Saturday, June 28, 2014

MFA Summer Symposium Photo Stream: Day 5

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Check out the photos from the fifth day of the full-week Summer Symposium! 
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Friday, June 27, 2014

Inside the Circle with Carolina Crown

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The Music for All Summer Symposium provides many amazing opportunities for students. One of these experiences is definitely found in the Marching Band Division. The Marching Band students had the unique opportunity to rehearse and perform with Carolina Crown Drum and Bugle Corps at the DCI Central Indiana show. They also will be playing the national anthem at the start of the show tonight.
Yesterday, the Marching Division had the chance to have a clinic with Crown where they experienced what most marching band division students would say was "one of the coolest things ever." The students actually got to sit inside the Carolina Crown horn line circle.
We have heard from so many different students, that hearing the horn line like that is simply incredible (and dare we say, possibly life-changing!) 
The students also had the chance to interact with Carolina Crown members and were even instructed by Matt Harloff, Brass Caption Head of Carolina Crown, to take 30 seconds to "take a selfie" with Crown members!
Even better than all of that, the script was flipped, and the students played for members of Carolina Crown who were then sitting inside the circle of Marching Band Division members!
Yesterday was definitely an incredible experience for these students and we know tonight's performance in front of a full crowd at the DCI Central Indiana show will also be a moment these students will never forget.
On Thursday night Christian Howes and Southern Exposure joined us at Emens Auditorium for the fourth night in the Summer Symposium evening concert series. Christian Howes is a jazz violinist, educator, and producer from Columbus, OH. Christian Howes began working with Southern Exposure to create a style that combines modern jazz with Latin musical influences. This concert included a good mix of different types of music that surely did not disappoint.
The concert began with a more classical style mixed with jazz. Each instrumentalist had the opportunity to take a solo as Christian Howes played the melodies. One unique aspect to this group was the accordion player. This was definitely something that students had not been exposed to before and a great experience for them to have!

As the concert progressed, the group did something really unexpected. They went from a classical jazz ensemble to a rock band. Christian Howes whipped out his electric violin, changed some settings on his soundboard, and made the violin sound like an electric guitar! The students in the audience were in awe of this and immediately began cheering and clapping along. This sure was a unique aspect to the concert and something that many had never heard before.

About halfway through the concert, Christian Howes asked all the students to get out their phones and tweet about something in music that has inspired them. It was so amazing to see the different responses that the students came up with!
The final number of the concert featured some very special guest artists, the orchestra division students participating the Summer Symposium! Christian Howes wrote the piece for an orchestra accompaniment to play with the group. This sure was a once in a lifetime opportunity for these students.
Check out the photos from the the fourth day of the full-week Summer Symposium!
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Returning students to the Bands of America Drum Major Institute put their leadership skills to the test today with a new challenge: The Marble Exercise. In addition to conducting and score study classes at the Symposium, drum major participants build and improve leadership qualities important to marching band leaders. Teambuilding exercises that expose leaders and move them outside their comfort zone are important in ensuring that drum majors can lead and empower in almost any situation.

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IMG 2156In a group of 20, students received a piece of paper folded in half and one marble, which they were required to roll from one point, 25 feet out and around back to the original point using only the folded sheets of paper. Group members lined up their folded paper and attempted to move the marble down the line. After the marble passed through their paper, the participant would then have to move to the end of the line, helping the marble advance further. At first, the marble moved very quickly, students were unable to react in time and the marble fell soon after. Participants then realized that they would need to carefully control the pace of the marble, especially when it reached a curve in the track.

Throughout the exercise, some students because visibly frustrated, while others keep encouraging and supporting others. Many had simple phrases to help their fellow participants remember tactics they had agreed on, such as “Stay with your partner,” or “Keep your shoulders out.” After several tries and some discussion, the group was able to successfully roll the marble through the entire track. While many cheered at the distance they achieved, several even wanted to go further and keep improving.

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IMG 2150Like the brick exercise and other leadership activities that the drum majors participate in, the Marble Exercise is applicable to their own program. The marble, like their band, does not stop rolling. Leadership must utilize control, make adjustments along the way and communicate constantly to ensure that the ensemble does not falter and fall. When the marble fell and the participants failed, they had to get up and try again, and keep encouraging the others in their group. While applicable to a lot in life, the nonstop rolling reflects the fast-paced nature of marching band. From band camp to daily rehearsals to competitions, you cannot allow yourself or fellow members fall off the wagon. If so, they’ll not only be behind, but also be discouraged.

“When you go back to your own program, I charge you to find a way to make a flame,” said DMI faculty member Kim Shuttlesworth. Drum majors must empower their band members to be passionate about the ensemble. They must create a supporting family environment, where students can be honest, caring and respectful of each other. Just one of many exercises throughout the week, the Marble Exercise helped students realize the importance of group encouragement and teamwork in a larger group. At the end of the day, the marble keeps rolling, and you must adjust.

For the third performance in the MFA Evening Concert Series, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy was in Emens Auditorium! BBVD is a contemporary swing revival band from Southern California. They have produced several records and even performed at the 1999 Superbowl. They lit up the auditorium with their upbeat jazz charts and had the crowd dancing, clapping, and singing along with them.
The students at the Summer Symposium fell in love with this group from the very first note played. Every time one of the instrumentalists took a solo, the students went crazy with applause. They were so awed by the range of the trumpet players and the talent of the saxophone and trombone players.
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy was even generous enough to set up a meet and greet after the concert so that the students had the opportunity to get souvenirs signed. They absolutely loved this once in a lifetime experience!
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The students have the opportunity to see a wide variety of professionals perform at the Summer Symposium and having BBVD here is such a special experience for them to have. With every performance, they are inspired to continue striving towards the best in music in hopes that one day, they will be able to perform on stage for other aspiring musicians.
Thursday, June 26, 2014

MFA Summer Symposium Photo Stream: Day 3

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Check out the photos from the third day of full-week Summer Symposium!
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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Best of #MFACAMP

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We have been so excited to see all of the amazing photos and posts about the MFA Summer Symposium from our students and directors! We love these posts so much that we decided to create a photo album to share all of these great posts just in case anyone missed them!
So ladies and gentleman, I present to you, the best of #mfacamp!
A huge thank you goes out to our second evening concert at Emens Auditorium, the Atlantic Brass Quintet!
The students at the MFA Summer Symposium get to experience several genres of music all week long. The Atlantic Brass Quintet definitely did not disappoint with their variety of classical and jazz. The concert itself was an educational opportunity, with the quintet talking about the background of the pieces they were performing.
But one of the best parts of the concert had to of been when two of our very own Jazz Division students joined the Atlantic Brass Quintet onstage! Both of these students showcased their incredible talent in an auditorium filled with their peers, and we couldn't be more proud!
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It was definitely a fantastic concert, and we thank the Atlantic Brass Quintet (and our two Jazz Division saxophonists) for sharing their talents with us!
Wednesday, June 25, 2014

MFA Summer Symposium Photo Stream: Day 2

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Check out the photos from the second day of full-week Summer Symposium!
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