The National Endowment for the Arts announces a new federal interagency task force to promote research on the arts and human development
The National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts is leading a new task force of 13 federal agencies and departments to encourage more and better research on how the arts help people reach their full potential at all stages of life. "Human Development" is a framework that researchers, policymakers and practitioners use to devise research and programs that help people lead full lives from early childhood through old age.
by Karen Gonzalez — TCDA Secretary/Treasurer
I know the song states "it's the most wonderful time of the year," but if you are a music teacher, or part of a church or community chorus, the song should read "it's the most stressful and busy time of the year!"
As a lifelong musician and a teacher of 28 years, I've become increasingly disheartened at audience behavior. As an elementary school music teacher, it is a large part of my job to teach children audience etiquette. We start in kindergarten when students sing or play for each other. By the time my students leave at the end of 5th grade, they know how to behave at a program or concert.
We cannot, unfortunately, spend class time teaching adults how to behave appropriately. A colleague told a story of a parent sitting on the floor directly in front of the performers. I have experienced young children bumping into me from the back or side while I am directing a program. Now I address the audience, asking parents to please keep their children with them during the performance and not let them run around in the cafeteria.
As a related problem, many of us have our programs and concerts in the multi-purpose cafeteria or cafetorium, not the best venue. However, if we take the time to educate our audiences, I am confident we can improve behavior. You may want to make a little speech, have your kids make a "public service announcement" or print audience etiquette in your program. We must not give up or become complacent and accepting of this behavior.
I remind myself constantly that teaching music is so incredibly valuable, for it not only teaches note values, rhythm, tempo, melody, harmony . . . but it touches the emotions, heart and soul of a person. In our world of communication through technology instead of oral conversation, it becomes ever more important to communicate artistically through music. There is an unspoken bond formed between humans when they have worked hard, perform well and are proud of their accomplishments. I have found the most meaningful times with my classes and choir are when students tell me, "I love that song. It makes me feel happy!"
I hope during this busy and stressful holiday season you create and experience heart-felt music and it makes you feel happy!
University of Wisconsin choirs perform at Vatican
To sing in the Vatican and hope for a glimpse of the pope is a rare opportunity, but members of the University of Wisconsin-Superior Acappella Choir and Chamber Choir will have that experience in January.
About 60 students who perform with the choirs will travel through Italy Jan. 11-19.
Choral group books 2015 conference in Salt Lake City
The Salt Lake Tribune
The American Choral Directors Association has announced its 2015 biennial conference will be coming to Salt Lake City.
The conference is expected to attract 10,000 visitors, and those attending will utilize downtown venues that include the Salt Palace, Abravanel Hall, the Capitol Theater, the Cathedral of Madeleine, the First Presbyterian Church, Assembly Hall and the Mormon Tabernacle.
Kingsman's choir scores a double victory
King's College — Cambridge
A choir directed by former Choral Scholar Simon Phipps has just won two major European prizes.
On Oct. 16, The Swedish Chamber Choir, founded by Phipps in 1997, won the European Broadcasting Union's "Let the Peoples Sing" competition for amateur choirs. The competition was held in Manchester, U.K., and broadcast by 16 radio stations. Over 2.9 million people listened to the final.
Marianna Sablina: Music should be good, interesting and simply genuine
The National Philharmonic Society of Ukraine hosts a concert dedicated to the 40th anniversary of the Shchedryk Children's Choir, which has no analogues in Ukraine, and maybe in the whole world.
The choir may be called children's only according to the age of its members, because the rest of the indices – repertoire, level of performance, numerous victories in choir competitions, international music status – prove that it is an absolutely adult and serious ensemble.
Perfect harmony: How Gareth Malone is marching army wives choir to the top
At a reception in a London hotel, a fresh-faced cadet is wandering through a smiling platoon of military wives, many of them dressed up smartly for a day on the town. Surely he is too young to be sent to war? "He has not ironed the creases on that uniform right," says Donna Sutcliffe, wife of a corporal, with an indulgent smile at the cadet. "To us Gareth is a completely ordinary bloke."
Interkultur extends deadline for World Choir Games registration
Interkultur, the Germany-based owner and producer of the World Choir Games, has extended the registration deadline for the 7th World Choir Games to Jan. 15, 2012, giving choirs more than another month to send in the necessary paperwork for participation in the event, which will take place July 4-14, 2012, in Cincinnati. Already 239 choirs from 38 countries have signed up for The Open Competition and The Champions Competition. So many registrations are coming in daily to U.S. and international offices that Interkultur recruitment staff is working tirelessly to process the paperwork.