The Daily Orchestra Program is off to an exciting start!
Lisa and I are very happy that every student from last year has registered to return to the program this year. We started off our first week playing some of our favorite games, and playing and dancing to the tune, Boil ‘em Cabbage Down. This year all of our students already have experience playing in orchestra together, so I’m looking forward to seeing how far they will go this year. Here are some photos of our first day together.
Community MusicWorks presents the New York premiere of Fantasia con Guayaba Habanera!
CMW brings an evening of genre-bending virtuosity and electricity to New York's DiMenna Center on Saturday, October 18 at 7pm.
Join Community MusicWorks, Venezuelan composer Gonzalo Grau, and violinist Johnny Gandelsman (of the Silk Road Project and Brooklyn Rider) on October 18 for the New York City premiere of Fantasia de Guayaba Habanera. "Fantasia" features Johnny Gandelsman on violin alongside CMW students and resident ensemble, with Grau's nine-piece Guayaba Salsa Band. The concert includes additional works by Gonzalo Grau. The evening will be capped with salsa dancing, so bring your dancing shoes! This project brings together all elements of the Community MusicWorks mission--music education and performance in the context of building community.
CMW's students and teachers gathered recently for Community Day, a celebratory start to the new season of lessons that included music, food and games like Illustrated Telephone, which Rhiannon describes below.
Community Day was an exciting day for me, starting my second year of the Fellowship. It was great to see so many familiar faces, to reconnect with all of the friends that I've made in the last year, and see how so many students have grown over the summer. I can't believe it's only been three months and some of them have sprouted like trees! After just a year, it feels like a homecoming to be back in the TAPA cafeteria surrounded by students and parents.
To give everyone a sample of the fun we had with group games before going to our first ensemble meetings, I saved some of the finished pages from our game of 'Illustrated Telephone.' The rules of the game: One player begins by writing a descriptive sentence and passing the paper to their right. The next player's task is to draw a picture based on the sentence handed to them, then folds the paper and passes it to the right so that the next player sees only the picture and has to write a descriptive sentence based on the picture. The cycle continues all the way around the circle--there's no limit to the number of players, and each page passes until it's filled up. As you will see, hilarity ensues!
Unsurprisingly, many of the sentences centered around instruments, with the anticipation of impending music-making hanging in the air. Here is one that stayed remarkably on-topic despite a number of creative variations:
We had so many players, we continued on another page so everyone could get a chance to play:
Not all of the sentences were music-themed. Some were just good fun to draw and write. This one features my own exquisite artwork, but I'm too shy to say which drawing is mine:
This one, though, was my favorite. It has everything--a great subject, vivid illustrations, and a surprise plot twist!
On the back of the page, the final sentence reads:
This Fall, Community MusicWorks welcomes new Fellows to our team!
Violist Hannah Ross recently completed her Masters of Music at the Juilliard School in New York City. She is an active performer and dedicated teacher, and moved to Providence after spending a summer abroad in Tanzania and Denmark. In Tanzania, Hannah completed her fifth summer co-directing and working in Art Powers Arusha, a student-run, multidisciplinary outreach group which she helped to found. Since 2009, the Art Powers Arusha team has been supporting and encouraging students’ personal development and individuality throughout the Arusha community through a curriculum of performing arts.
At the beginning of their Fellowship, all new fellows are asked to respond in writing to questions about the upcoming Fellowship experience. When asked what drew her to Community MusicWorks, Hannah wrote, “I very much believe in sharing my love of music with others, particularly in the fields of teaching and playing chamber music. CMW offers both of these opportunities for fellows to learn and share together. I am also interested in non-profit work, which I hope to learn about in my time here.”
Asked about what other things she looks forward to in the Fellowship: “I'm really looking forward to meeting all of the students! Meeting people from all walks of life is what I love the most about the world. I think each person in the world can learn something from every person they meet, and I'm excited to see what my students and I will learn from each other.”
As Hannah settles in to her new home in Providence, she also confides that “at the age of 23 and 3/4, I’ve joined the Millennial generation with the purchase of my first smart phone.” In her free time, she enjoys knitting scarves to be worn during polar vortexes, as well as baking a variety of desserts to be shared with friends. She also loves writing snail mail letters to her closest friends, a hobby she began before email took over the world.
Cellist Clara Yang recently received her Doctor of Musical Arts in cello performance from Rice University. While at Rice, she collaborated with the Watercolor Art Society in Houston and lead six workshops and an interactive performance displaying children’s art works for the Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers at the Texas Children’s Hospital. Having witnessed firsthand the positive influence music can have on individuals and their community, Clara believes that such forms of teaching and outreach are an integral part of music education.
Clara is also an active and accomplished performer and is currently a member of the Ardelia Trio with whom she performs educational concerts and performances for diverse audiences. Clara is enthusiastic to join the Community MusicWorks team, and in particular looks forward to “learning from the other fellows and staff, to building strong teacher-student relationships with my students, and learning more about what goes into building and sustaining a program like this.”
Clara was drawn to CMW because “the idea of reaching out to the community through music in a much more direct and influential way is really inspiring.” She hopes to search and seek out opportunities to create or join projects inspired and modeled by CMW in the future.
Clara also looks forward to getting to know the CMW community and people, and has joined husband Tristen, a medical resident, in Providence. When she is not teaching or performing, Clara loves listening to jazz, finding good eats and exploring Providence.