Monday, June 18, 2012

Thanks for another great year in music!

Hi Wonderland Kids and Families -- just wanted to thank you all for another amazing year at our little school in the canyon. I want especially thank the fifth graders for their wonderful performance at culmination (check out the video) and everybody for the thoughtful gifts I received this week. Have a great summer everybody!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Ukulele Lesson 4 - Em Chord & "Forever Young"

5th Grade Uke Players -- here is the last chord we will need for our performance - Em - and the first part of the Bob Dylan song, "Forever Young." If you know the Bob Dylan version, you will notice it has been adapted to be a better partner for "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."

Friday, June 1, 2012

Wonderland Ensemble Concert - Finale

One of my favorite parts of this process is to get the three ensembles, who have been working independently all year, to perform at least one song together. This piece, a folk tune from Trinidad made famous by Harry Belafonte, had exactly one rehearsal with all the groups together. They did a great job with it! It's been a good year for ensemble -- we'll miss our bandmates who are moving on to middle school, but hopefully many of the third and fourth graders will try ensemble again next year!

Wonderland Ensemble Concert - Orff

As I have told the kids Orff-Schulwerk is the approach to instruction that use most often at Wonderland, but Orff also refers to a really cool set of percussion instruments. Here's the Orff Ensemble performing a challenging piece by Bela Bartok. Very nice stuff!

Wonderland Ensemble Concert -- Recorders

Some of the material we played was from the Renaissance Faire a few weeks ago, including this 3 part recorder piece, "Pastime With Good Company" by Henry VIII of England. Video recordings of Recorder tend to be the least flattering -- every squeak is preserved -- which is why this excellent performance is even more impressive. Well done recorders!

Wonderland Ensemble Performance - Chorus

Yesterday our three ensembles had the big performance -- three shows for their peers and teachers. Tonight is the evening show, if you missed. I am so proud of the job they did -- really excellent work as the video reveals. This first clip is from the choral performance of a song based on a Maori proverb, "Tama Tu."