By Camilla Sanders, Piano and Voice Instructor
Hi there! This particular subject means so much to me as a music teacher. My daughter is devoted to gymnastics and my son is devoted to Tae Kwon Do, so I'm seeing the process of those arts and weighing that experience with Music. Music is meant to be performed in a community, just like dance, visual art and sports. I'll elaborate below, but if you only read this far, I want to encourage each and every student to sign up for the recital.
Why is it so important to participate in the recitals?
We have been teaching music for decades now and we know for a fact that the students who choose not to participate are the students who fall behind and quit music lessons. Recitals are so rewarding for students! Not only is it a great accomplishment, it is FUN and INSPIRING to see other students perform. It is an opportunity for them to encourage other students who might be nervous. Music is a Performing Art and requires a village. It is about community and self-expression in that community. It is about the family declaring to the student that this is so important to us that we will be there and focused on what you have learned the past six months. Lastly, it is the final step of learning a piece of music. If we miss out on taking that step, we have no idea how to memorize and polish the music we learn.
What are Ponier Music recitals like?
Just plain fun. Really! If a child is nervous, then the teachers play with them. Every style of music is represented from blues to classical to modern rock. There’s food and prizes and students are smiling. The majority of students go back to the teacher immediately following the recital and have their song picked out for the next recital. They realize that this is the reward for all those hours of sitting by themselves in their room practicing.
Why are there two recitals a year?
While performing is rewarding, it is also hard work. It is not something you learn the first time getting up there. It is a skill that takes repetition and the more you do it, the easier it becomes. We have to work on reducing anxiety and building confidence in our students and this is part of our “workshop”.
My child just started music lessons. Should they even bother playing this first recital?
We encourage the beginning students here at Cherokee Music Center to perform right from the start. Even if it is just a few measures, we have a lot of Twinkle Twinkle at the recitals. We can get them into the habit of performing, BEFORE they know to be self conscious and nervous about it. By the time those nerves kick in, they might have two or three recitals under their belt.
My child is extremely nervous about the upcoming recital. How do I handle this?
It’s a tough thing when your see your child nervous, but we are part of your team and we know exactly how to handle it. First of all, they need to prepare the piece no matter what. Then, they need to GO no matter what. After they walk in the door, the rest is up to them. They will not be pressured in any way. If they refuse to play, then they will enjoy performances of other students and experience what it’s like. They may just need to see it first! The instructors know not to push, but will also offer the option of playing with them or just sitting next to them. That is a great start as well!
Is there a fee for the recital?
Yes, the fee is $12.00, which goes into making the recital fantastic. In this case, the location and food. Anything left over will be donated to the Powers Ferry United Methodist Music Ministry.
I hope this answers any questions you may have! If you need any additional information, please feel free to contact David Suddeth at email@example.com or 770-928-8807. Thank you and I look forward to a beautiful May 1st recital!