Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sight Reading Bears Fruit!

One of Alison's biggest dreams is to play her violin in an orchestra.  So far she has not had that opportunity, but we might be getting closer! 

Oh, how I wish I could play an orchestra instrument.  I felt completely left out last night, as we made music with a new group.  You'll have to excuse me for including myself in the pronoun "we" -- if it wasn't for me, the girls wouldn't have been there, so I get to say "we", don't I?  Our German flutist friend went to a lot of work coordinating schedules, finding suitable music that has suitable parts (Albinoni, Vivaldi, Pergolesi, Mozart and Pleyel), and making copies for everyone.  We had ten musicians of varying skill levels: flutists, violinists, a violist, trombonists and a flugelhornist.  (Is that a word?  Flugelhornist?) The two men who participated were dads of three of the other musicians.  Hey, that gives me an idea... my DH used to play the clarinet... Honey, why don't you take the girls to music on Mondays, and you can play with them, too...?

If you read any music pedagogy blogs (such as here or here), you can't miss their stress on the importance of sight reading. I am certain that sight reading is one of two activities that have really contributed  to my mostly untrained girls' musical skills.  Each week for the past eight months or so, they have been playing unfamiliar music with some older ladies to whom the music has NOT been unfamiliar.  And that is the second contributing activity -- playing with other people.  Both Alison and Amy have made incredible improvement in a very short time.  Without that experience, last night's group would not have been a delight for either of them.

But in Amy's own words, we had SO MUCH FUN!!!  Who knows?  Maybe one of these days we'll have a real family orchestra in town.    (Keep praying, Alie.)

Praise ye the LORD.
Praise God in his sanctuary:
praise him in the firmament of his power.
Praise him for his mighty acts:
praise him according to his excellent greatness.
Praise him with the sound of the trumpet:
praise him with the psaltery and harp.
Praise him with the timbrel and dance:
praise him with stringed instruments and organs.
Praise him upon the loud cymbals:
praise him upon the high sounding cymbals.
Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD.
Praise ye the LORD.

Psalm 150


  1. Fantastic!!!

    Yes sight reading is super important! (Says the one who struggled horribly through her Ear Training & Sight Reading class as a freshman music major...because I hadn't had a speck of it up until that point!) :p

    Also - when I used to play with the youth orchestra they would pass out new music, and if you couldn't sight read - those first few rehearsals were VERY uncomfortable!

    GOOD for your girls! (And yes - your hubby should definitely pick up his clarinet again...and teach you!) ;-)



  2. WooHoo! Praise the Lord! I am so happy for you all! Great photo and what a nice place - I like the big white piller :).

  3. Looks like she did play in an orchestra! That's awesome. Where there is a will there is a way!


  4. Have you thought about one of the summer music camps at a Christian college. I am not familiar with the west coast's Christian colleges, but I know many of them have a week in the summer where 12-18 year olds go to study their instrument and play together in a band/orchestra. I know Pensacola, Bob Jones, and Maranatha all do it. One of my friends used to go to the Pensacola camp every year and she enjoyed it.

  5. Sally, I wish I could hear them play. I'm sure it was beautiful. Betsy told Aubrey that she is going to be learning how to play the clarinet. I'm sure she'll enjoy that.

    I understand blogging breaks, I tend to have one between each post as of lately. Honestly, I just don't enjoy posting like I used to. I'm not going to give it up as there are too many of you that I want to keep in touch with, so I'll keep hanging around and post when it's convenient for me.

    Did you get the acorn tops and did they work? I'll be checking in to see when you return :-).

    Blessings, Julie


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