As graduates this month of CMW's Fellowship Program, Rachel and Arlyn were asked to provide several memorable moments or anecdotes that would shed light on their favorite experiences over the past two years spent at Community MusicWorks. Their responses are posted as a series on this blog throughout the month of June.
How do you take the violin out of its case? What are the parts and strings on the violin? How do you hold the violin, and where do your arms and fingers go? How can you make a beautiful sound with the bow?
This semester, three of our program’s “little sibs” had the chance to learn about these important first steps towards being a violinist in CMW’s first Pre-Twinkle class. Amy, Beny, and Shakiru were the first participants in Pre-Twinkle and made their performance debut in the May 30 Performance Party.
There was so much to learn and explore, even without instruments! I had so much fun teaching our Pre-Twinklers how to read basic rhythms, shadow bow, and sing the “Treble Clef Song,” a handy rhyme that helps us remember the lines and spaces. In the fourth class, I handed them instruments for the first time. I was so excited by the enthusiastic spirit and focus demonstrated by the students and their parents on this day! Since then, Amy, Beny, and Shakiru have practiced and mastered many Pre-Twinkle goals, such as:
rest position/playing position
pizzicato on the open strings
playing “Mississippi Hot Dog” on the open E
preliminary left hand motion
Each Tuesday, well before our scheduled time, I would spot the Pre-Twinklers peeking into my teaching room, eagerly waiting for our class to begin. They were passing time in the big space at the Met School, waiting with their families as their older siblings were in lessons, Music Lab, or Fiddle Lab. Later in the semester, I was pleased to find they were no longer waiting, but practicing on their own and experimenting with sounds!
-Arlyn Valencia, Fellow (07-09)