Tuesday, December 25, 2012

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

While November and December are certainly considered to be The Most Wonderful Time of the Year, it is also the BUSIEST time of the year--especially for those of us involved in the world of music.  Shortly after the last time I posted, I was busy getting ready for Thanksgiving.  Then, one of our TJ Theatre Classes performed The Little Mermaid.  Shortly after that, TJ had adjudication, two holiday gigs at Holly Hills Country Club in Ijamsville, MD followed by a Winter Choral Concert and Sweeney Todd Auditions.  Phew!

Sweeney Todd will be performed at TJ in CONCERT on March 1st and 2nd, 2013
While this is a busy time of year and I'm not with my awesome boys as much as I'd like to be, I really do like being back in the swing of teaching and singing and concerts.  Although we had our October showcase, this was my first Winter concert back as a teacher and I have to say that I absolutely loved it.  This concert may have even been more meaningful than concerts in the past because of the heart and soul I've poured into the preparation.  Having a class that is 25% low level students (yes, 25% of my students have mental retardation of some form--whether it is mild or moderate) has required me to open my eyes, learn new teaching techniques, and ask for help!!!  I fully admit that I was VERY nervous in the beginning of the year and there were times where it seemed as though we wouldn't be able to pull it together.....but we did!  The students worked hard and received three 2's (a score of excellent) and a 1 (score of superior) in sightreading.  They also performed very well at the winter concerts and the father of my student with autism came and had a nice conversation with me.  It was humbling to hear that this student is fond of my class and it really melted my heart.

The Advanced Music Studies students continue to amaze me.  In Theory I, we've already completed chords and are almost finished with chords and non-harmonic tones.  The piano students are also coming along having learned their C, G, D, and F Major scales as well as many songs.  In our Literature class, students are researching Requiems and performing a movement from their chosen Requiem.  Our Chamber class has been consumed with carols for our caroling gigs as well as adjudication.  When we get back from winter break, we will be jumping into Sweeney Todd.

Finally, Pam and I got to spend some time together this past Saturday as we finished up our gift for our dad. Dad has always been tough to buy for, so we really thought about getting him something special.  Dad loves music and growing up, we were exposed to the classics.  Dad taught us the ins and outs of Rock and Roll.  We even had a Fisher Price Record Player and we'd jam out to the Monkees.  My childhood friend and I used to write letters to Davy all the time.  :-)  Anyway, growing up around music and always hearing Dad talk about "The Day the Music Died" (Yup--February 3, 1959--the day that Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper, etc. died), how could Pam and I not grow up to appreciate music?  And here I am, a High School Music teacher....and not a day goes by that I don't thank Dad for the gift of music.  Pam and I decided to record a couple of his favorite songs.  We made a CD for him.  :-)  

Merry Christmas to you and your family from all of the Berrys.  :-)