Musicians were born for times like these!

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by Jennene Estes, The Catoctin School of Music Improvisation is the act of accessing creativity in the moment and under pressure, to resolve or direct the resolution of a situation to meet objectives. It is the ability to converge composition, creativity and execution to achieve success. And the benefits of learning improvisation have been proven… Read more »

The Gift of Practice as Self-Care

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Give Yourself the Gift of Regularly Scheduled Practice Time by Alyssa Cowell, The Catoctin School of Music Self-care awareness is currently at an all-time high. It seems like every other article floating across my dashboard pertains to developing strategies to give your mind a rest, to practice personal-care rituals geared toward stress relief, or to… Read more »

Fearless Sight-reading: Do It Often!

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by Robert Fisher: The Catoctin School of Music I will never forget one terrifying Sunday morning as I began accompanying the church choir in a hymn on the piano. I was in high school at the time and through some fortunate circumstances was given the opportunity to serve as a part-time pianist and musician at… Read more »

Analytical Listening vs. Emotional Comparison

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Students have asked me on multiple occasions what it means to listen analytically/critically. Students often equate this idea with comparing one’s ability to that of another. Have you ever watched a video of someone playing a piece on your program and thought that person played it better? That’s a comparison based on an emotional response… Read more »

Why I Disagree With David Grohl

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by Jamey Mann, Catoctin School of Music “David Grohl Proves You Don’t Need Lessons to Rock” While surfing YouTube for new music and educational videos for my students I was dismayed to find the titled video above. I was hoping that the title sarcasm and the video would offer some insight in the work it… Read more »