Interlude: April News and Events

Another month has arrived. Spring is here. Well, Spring is somewhere, but it seems to have taken a wrong turn on its way to Boston. We’ve got a lot of fun things happening in April and May, and a lot of my time is going to setting up a student and faculty recital in May. Please check the events and news below and help support our local musicians! In addition, the last few blog posts have interactive features. If you’ve used them, please let me know what you think!

A Street Events…

Keep an eye out for our next YMCA concert!
AND
A Street Music Recital coming up in May!

April Teacher Performances…

April 2 – 8pm
Dan Flonta with the Atlantic Symphony
New England Conservatory
290 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA

April 3 – 4pm
Dan Flonta with the Atlantic Symphony
Duxbury Performing Arts Center
130 George Street, Duxbury, MA

April 8 – 2pm
Bülent Güneralp with pianist Eunyoung Kim
Brigham House
341 Mt. Auburn St, Watertown, MA

April 8 – 8pm
Chad Gray improvising at Maya Kite’s Dance Recital
Roxbury Community College
1234 Columbus Ave, Boston, MA

April 10 – 12pm
Justin Stanley and Andrew Gushiken
Wenham Street Brass with Heidi Aispuro
Pierce Hall at NEC
241 St. Botolph Street, Boston, MA

April 13 – 7pm
Bülent Güneralp in The Prioress Tale
Peabody, MA
(bulentguneralp.com for more details)

April 16 – TBA
Nick Dinnerstein with Narrowland String Quartet
nickdinnerstein.moonfruit.com for more details

April 16 – 7pm
Chad Gray with Boston String Players
Featuring Chad’s “Variations on a theme by Weezer”
First Church in Boston
66 Marlborough Street, Boston, MA

April 16 – 8pm
Dan Flonta with the Chatham Chorale
D-Y Regional High School, Yarmouth, MA

April 17 – 3pm
Dan Flonta with the Chatham Chorale
Nauset Regional Middle School, Orleans, MA

Dates throughout April
Ken Freeman and his band, Wishful Thinking
wishfulthinkingmusic.com

Wednesdays in April – 9pm
Paul Chase
The Burren
247 Elm Street, Somerville, MA

Other News…

New album by Michael Thomas
The Long Way
Available at thomasjazz.com

Purchase Geni Skendo’s method book at A Street
A Flute Workbook: Exercises derived from modes used by Olivier Messiaen

A Street’s resident ensemble, the Wenham Street Brass, will be presenting a program at Pierce Middle School in Quincy on April 8th. We hope to have some documentation on the blog in mid April to let you know what we did!

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Practicing Now

Hello blog readers!

This particular update is a little different than anything I’ve done before on the blog. Bülent Güneralp, A Street’s piano, voice, and drum teacher, approached me a few weeks ago to share an article he had found, written by Wayne Dyer.

Dr. Wayne Dyer

Bülent suggested that this article, “Resolve to Get Real,” could very easily be applied to the way we practice music. I’d never heard of Dyer before Bülent showed me this article and another book with information about Dyer, so I can’t speak to Dyer’s body of work at all. However, I think that Bülent has a great idea regarding how to apply some of the ideas in the article to our students’ practice. The following is Bülent’s idea:

As we entered 2011, I happened to check Dr. Wayne Dyer’s website where I came across “Resolve to Get Real,” a short article on his blog. I read it and thought, “This approach could be helpful for many people in many different ways and areas.” I thought that students could apply the idea to their practice and may get wonderful results. I thought, “It would be wonderful if the parents and students themselves read and analyzed the article, and expressed in their won words how they could apply the idea to the students’ practice.” So here we go. Let’s consider this as homework: What does this article by Dr. Dyer mean to you? I look forward to hearing what our students and parents will say.

Dyer’s short article has a very simple thesis; in general, it’s better to live in the moment. He wrote it at the beginning of the year to explain how “living in the moment” is a better philosophy than making long term resolutions. I’ve seen similar negative outcomes from friends who have vowed to quit smoking or to start exercising, as well as some positive ones. I was younger, I would vow to practice through the summer, and I would habitually break that vow. It doesn’t make sense, because I’ve always loved playing the French horn. Perhaps if I’d approached it in a different way, I would have progressed more quickly.

Young people and parents often become frustrated by practice. Well, young people by practicing and parents by a lack of practicing. Practice is a very strange thing. Often music teachers don’t give clear cut homework like students would receive in school. Students of music are often forced to direct their own learning, which can be a huge challenge. The way we teachers approach music teaching has to help students learn how to teach themselves.

We’re going to share this article with parents and younger students at A Street, and record their response through a short survey. I’ll be back to the blog soon, hopefully with some interesting ideas from our students about how to practice. I wanted to post the Dyer article here on the blog to avoid any confusion, but the terms of use on Dyer’s website forbid republication in any form. Please follow this link or the link above to the article.

Update 2/21/11: Anyone out there reading the blog who wishes to complete the survey as well, feel free! You can find the survey through this link.

What’s Goin’ on in December?

Hi blog readers! Instead of information about our teachers or ideas about education, this post is dedicated to this month’s news and events. Feel free to comment or email us to get more information. I’ll keep you updated as more events are added.

Upcoming A Street Music events…

December 16, 2010 – noon
A performance on behalf of A Street Music
Quincy YMCA

December Teacher Performances…

December 4, 2010 – 7pm
Chad Gray with the Boston String Players
Featuring Chad’s composition, “Reddish Blue”
First Church in Boston, 66 Marlborough St.

December 8, 2010 – 8pm
Bülent Güneralp
Christmas Concert in the MIT Chapel

December 12th, 2010 – 2pm
Nick Dinnerstein with pianist Pei-yeh Tsai
Wellesley Free Library
530 Washington Street, Wellesley, MA

Dates throughout December
Ken Freeman and his band, Wishful Thinking
wishfulthinkingmusic.com

And…

Until 2010 is over, get a free lesson when you rent an instrument at A Street Music!

Happy Holidays!